does anyone have strange sensations in the head like pressure building that wakes you up

i have yet to find anyone who has the same, and i cant explain this to the doc, or consultants, a sensation like heavy pressure 'building up inside my head as if it will eventually burst' ----it is intolerable and eventually dies down but then comes back, it wakes me constantly and i have had no rest or sleep or peace for 3 years now, no one seems able to understand this or even know where to look or what to look for, to live like this for the rest of my life is going to be awful, i have constant throbbing in my spine and nerve endings are all tingling...

26 Replies

  • Just a suggestion. Have you tried a cranial osteopath? It actually makes me fill ill (not a good recommendation I realise), but I know other people who think cranial osteopathy is fantastic.

  • What you are describing sounds to me like a type of migraine. Not all migraines have pain. some have pressure. Have a look on the Migraine Trusts website and see it there is anything that rings any bells.

    Have you ever had a head injury or TIA or stroke? Pressure headaches can be a post traumatic headache that results from one of those.

  • I have these symptoms when I am hypo (have been severely so) and they are slowly resolving as my levels increase. Have you had recent blood tests?

  • yes i have and have been upped so to speak, but after 3 years and still there i wonder what damage is done to my head inside brain etc--- it is getting less at times but then returns severly...

  • Yes mine varies and is much worse if I am tired. Reading your reply further down our experiences sound very similar. Mine happened following a TT nearly 3 years ago. It seems I wasn't converting the T4 so was actually very hypo though kept being told nobody ever had problems and it must be psychological! I have since seen a private Dr who says I was seriously ill! I am therefore inclined to think my symptoms are thyroid related as I did not have them before my TT.

  • Hello Pettals

    I have been having a weird head pressure and also tingling sensation since February. It comes and goes. Also developed tinnitus a couple of weeks later which I still have.

    It sometimes feels like crawling insects on my scalp. I know it sounds mad.

    Mine seemed to start with a bad neck which I have now found out is arthritis as I had a

    neck xray a couple of weeks ago. Doc says its referred pain from the neck. I have an

    an appointment with specialist this Friday which I hope will help.It's horrible feeling and quite scary.

    By the way I am hypo and on just T3.

    Good luck


  • hi heritage mine started after being very very ill i think i had an adrenal crisis that wasnt recgonised-- as they hate the word adrenals- but i had all the symptoms plus swelling in my face and eyelid skin etec, i was given a high dose of prednisolone for 9 days-- then i had to stop= i think i was very low on cortisol prior hence i was so ill, so my theiry is that my adrenals thought hey we dont have to struggle now we are having outside help with this prednisolone, so they rested and then when i stopped i had NONE!. THEN ALL HELL broke loose, i was dysfunctional, nerev endings kicked off tingling everywhere , throbbing in my brain stem and spine, head pressures so severe it would not let me slepp at all for 2 years, i was hypoglcemic sweating, weight loss of a stone nauseous unable to eat throat like cardboard bp up down , dizzy weak fainting , all these are adrenal crisis symptoms and i felt so dreadfully dreadfully ill i thought i was dying but it took a lot of rsaerchmg an d reading and taking supplement to up my cortsiol iuntil i as given pregneneolone but so many things went wrong in my body it was left too long and now i am suffering i will get there i hope t but it wil be ages still want o know what the head pressure s are and no one has a clue..

  • OMG You poor thing. Makes mine seem like a walk in the park.

    I hope you can find answers to everything. Maybe if you could

    go private to get help.

    I wish you all the best, sorry not able to help.


  • Heritage, did you ever find the outcome to your head problems? The 'insect crawling on scalp' sensation is exactly how I feel, but I felt crazy for thinking it until you wrote it too.

  • Hello again

    I do still get that horrible head feeling now and again but nothing like

    I used to. I am not scared of it like I used to be as am sure it is my neck

    causing the problem. It usually comes back when I have the neck and shoulder pain after working too hard in garden etc.

    I did have loads of physio on it but tbh not sure it helped really.

    I also had a couple of sessions if acu puncture which again don't really think helped. Main thing which seemed to help was normal things like

    trying to relax more and be more careful of overdoing it etc.

    pretty sure mine will never go completely. I do still have the

    tinnitis too.

    That crawly feeling is very scary but knowing other people have it does

    help. Having looked on line over the year I have found a few people who have described exact same thing as us.

    By the way doctor and physio people all said neck related. I did read an article in Daily mail (saddo that I am I have kept it to reassure myself) with more or less same thing, person described hers a prickly feeling in head and numbness. Doc reply

    said nerve irritation to scalp caused by occipital nerve which branch off from spinal cord into neck.

    Hope above helps to reassure you. Wishing you all the best.


  • You haven't ever had a head injury, have you? One of the results can be sleep apnea which could explain your terrible nights. You could ask for a polysomnography test which would diagnose this. Another result of head injury can be tinnitus and Menieres-like symptoms. This article about Menieres and sleep apnea talks about the 'hydropic distension of the endolymphatic system" which might account for the bursting feeling, which gets worse at night.

    (Even if you haven't had a head injury, I would recommend looking into the sleep apnea possibility. Sleep apnea can have many causes, and a CPAP machine might help you.)

  • That sounds exactly like the sensation I have been experiencing over the past year. It started very seldom and has been slowly increasing. It's such an odd feeling, the pressure just builds and builds. . I worry more about what this is a sign of. For now I can handle the episodes.

    I am definitely interested in hearing who else is experiencing this

  • That sounds exactly like the sensation I have been experiencing over the past year. It started very seldom and has been slowly increasing. It's such an odd feeling, the pressure just builds and builds. . I worry more about what this is a sign of. For now I can handle the episodes.

    I am definitely interested in hearing who else is experiencing this

  • I have recently sol tarted having this happen to me. I have found anyone yet to explain it.

  • Hello Bluepettals2.

    Do you still get the head pressure or did you have any luck finding out what it was about? I have been getting unbearable head pressure like when all the blood rushes to your head and eyes feel like they popping.. this happens when i lie down or when i bend over.... accompanied by dead arm sensation when bending them for a few seconds or if bent in the night it wakes me up....

    I hope that yours is better now...

  • hi HW, no I don't know, I had a sleep study done  as it was horrendous andpainful likemy head in a crusher, or brain swelling or blood  vessels narrowing, I have no idea but I had the sleep study wired up to electrodes, and I couldn't sleep with all th etrailing wires, so no head pressure that night- I have waited 6 years fo rthat and should have that doen wheni twas horrendous, it dies down but always come back, I doubt they will ever find out, but now I a thinking that lyme hs got into my nervous system I hop eto God I am wrong!

  • Thanks for your swift reply. So bizarre it only happens when you are asleep and wakes you up.... there has got to be a reason for it. Mine is still intermittent but mostly bending / laying etc. Best wishes.

  • you too my daer..

  • Hope your condition has improved over three years! It sounds like blood pressure problems

    to me - avoidance of salt may help as this can put your blood pressure up - it might even

    affect your brain arteries, which swell.

  • hello I dontthink it is blood pressure a sitis generally low but itdoes fel likemybrain is swelling- I have theories, spinal fluid with infection, or too much Substance P, or lyme, no one has ever found out , at the moment it is in a bit of remission. but this has happened before.....

  • Another idea is to see a chiropractor - they work on the nerves whereas osteopaths work on the blood supply. Chiropractors use x rays and will probably be able to give you some idea what is going on. gadgrant

  • I couldn't afford their prices and had seen one yearsago.

  • glad you are in remission - you never know it might be some supplement or food that is

    affecting you - gingseng can make people feel odd - as you say you are better may be it is

    not lyme or infection - I head of someone who had symptoms a bit like yours, she was elderly

    but after investigations she had vascular head arteries swelling. She was given steroids after

    going to hospital, and was perfectly ok. So if you are eating anything like soya or even lentils

    you could have a food intolerance which can affect your brain - gluten might be something

    which could affect you. Certain chemists have allergy kits which you can send back for analysis.

    They test for a range of foods which can cause side effects. Keep well.

  • are you using aluminium or non stick coated cookware or foil or gadgets like george foreman grill,slow cooker,new coffee making pod machines

    heat alumi ium and it affects the food and causes havoc in the body

  • if you mean me reallyfed up no I use stainless steel, no gadgets. foil cling film etc I have lyme

  • Yes I get that sensation worse when lying down,seems mine is due to bone spurs and degeneration in cervical spine also gives thick head type head and neck ache.

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