Children and Chronic Daily Headache

Research suggests that  1.5% of middle school children are affected by chronic daily headache. However, some children who suffer may outgrow the disabling condition.

“Our results suggest there is hope for children who experience these headaches and for their parents, who also deal with the frustration and considerable disability that this condition can bring,” said Shuu-Jiun Wang, MD/ “Over time…children get better, eventually having less frequent migraine headaches as young adults.”

Dr. Wang conducted a study that followed 122 children in middle school with chronic daily headache between the ages of 12 and 14 years old. Chronic daily headache was defined as experiencing 15 or more headache days per month, with each headache lasting for two or more hours per day.

The study found 60% of the children in the study no longer had chronic daily headache after 1 year. In addition, 75% no longer had symptoms after two years. After 8 years, only 12% of the 103 children in the study were still experiencing symptoms of chronic daily headache.

“Parents and children should be prepared for the possibility that while chronic daily headache may get better over time, headaches in general may never fully go away, but for most children the headaches are much less frequent when they become young adults,” said Dr. Wang.

Adapted from materials provided by American Academy of Neurology.

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