Eye health

Eyebrow pain: 12 Causes, Symptoms, Treatments

Eyebrow pain is troublesome. Why Does My Eyebrow Hurt? Have you ever had this question in mind? Then this article is for you.

You’ve probably heard grandmother complain about pain in the eye area while tracing her eyebrows with her fingers. You have also gotten home after a long day at work and wondered, “Why does eyebrow hurt?”

Unfortunately, a lot of people go through eyebrow pain and think nothing of it. Over time this pain festers and eventually morphs into a serious condition.

Causes of Eyebrow pain:

eyebrow pain
Image source: healthtap.com

Nothing can be more unsettling than eyebrow pain when you are trying to study or focus on that work assignment. So “why does my eyebrow hurt” may be the question on your mind right now. Here are 12 possible causes of that perturbing eyebrow pain.

Going down with a Cold/Allergy:

That persistent cough and runny nose you’ve been ignoring could be the cause of all your problems. Exposure to dust or pollen can also cause allergies that trouble your sinuses.

When sinuses are not clear, pressure builds in the head causing eyebrow bone pain when pressed. A cold can be treated by waiting it out while allergies can be treated with antihistamines.

Having Sinusitis:

Sinusitis is a disorder in which the sinuses are inflamed, also known as a sinus infection. This point is related to the one preceding it in that the former is mainly caused by a common cold or allergy while sinusitis can be caused by a whole host of reasons including;

  • Nasal Polyps:                                                                                                          This is tissue growth that blocks your sinuses
  • Crooked Septum:                                                                                                  When the wall that separated the nostrils blocks the nasal passage
  • Immune Diseases:                                                                                                  Immune-related diseases such as HIV can lead to inflammation of sinuses causing pain behind eyebrow
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Symptoms of Sinusitis:
  • High fever
  • A pressure in the eyes and sinuses, leading to eyebrow pain
  • A sore throat
  • Facial swelling
Treatments for Sinusitis:
  • Over the counter medication such as Tylenol
  • Sinus decongesting drugs like pseudoephedrine
Cranial Arteritis:

Cranial arteritis, also known as giant cell arteritis or temporal arteritis is a serious condition that manifests itself through symptoms such as general body weakness, fatigue, double vision, decreased appetite among others.

This condition happens as a result of inflammation or damage to blood vessels that deliver blood to the head. Insufficient supply of blood to the head could bring about eyebrow pain.

Symptoms of Cranial Arteritis:
  • Jaw pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • A sore throat
  • Vision issues such as blurred vision
Treatments for Cranial Arteritis:
  • High steroid doses
  • Reduce inflammation by administering drugs like prednisone
  • Vitamin D and calcium supplements
An Increase in Intracranial Pressure:

Increased pressure in the skull can cause a lot of eyebrow pain. High pressure in the skull is extremely serious since it not only causes pain behind eyebrow, it may lead to a damaged spinal cord. An increase in intracranial pressure can be brought about by a medical condition such as a brain tumour or bleeding in the brain.

Symptoms of Increased Intracranial Pressure:
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Double and blood vision
  • Loss of consciousness
Treatments for Intracranial Pressure:
  • Doctors draining intracranial pressure through shunts in the skull
  • Inducing hypothermia and cooling the body
  • Removing part of the skull to ease the pressure
Physical Injury:

The eye area is very sensitive any physical injury around there can have serious implications. It is important to ensure that this area is protected to avoid conditions such as constant eyebrow pain when pressed.

So if you are one those guys who are always spoiling for a bar brawl, you may want to rethink that; your vision could depend on it. An eye injury can also be caused by accidents which are hard to prevent.

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The answer to “why does my eyebrow hurt” sadly could be due to a preexisting condition is known as Glaucoma. This is a condition that causes injury to the optic nerve that conveys information from the brain to the eye.

Damage to the optic nerve causes increased pressure in the eye leading to acute eyebrow pain. This condition is particularly menacing because the symptoms only manifest when the damage is almost irreversible.

Symptoms of Glaucoma:
  • Hazy eyes
  • Sharp pain in the eyes
  • Eyebrow pain
  • Discoloured eyes
  • Loss of vision
  • Getting nauseous or eventual vomiting
Treatments for Glaucoma:
  • Applying eye drops
  • Laser surgery to increase fluid in the eyes
  • Microsurgery causes eye pressure
Eye Twitching:

You may want to go easy on the coffee from now on since the caffeine could be contributing to your eyebrow pain.

These spasms in the eye muscles are not only caused by caffeine though, but other factors such as tobacco, alcohol, stress, eyelid strain and a lack of enough sleep also play a role too. Eye spasms should be taken seriously since they might be indicative of a more serious problem.

Symptoms of Eyelid Twitches:
  • Spasms continue for several weeks
  • Upper eyelid closes
  • Eyelids red and swollen
  • Twitching affects other parts of your face
Treatments for Eyelid Twitches:
  • Less caffeine by taking less coffee
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Gentle eye compress whenever spasms come around
  • Keep your eyes lubricated
 Occasional Tension Headaches:

We have all suffered the discomfort of a tension headache, where your head feels like it is being pressed. This condition can be directly linked to the eyebrow pain you are experiencing. This could be as a result of a lack of enough sleep or stress.

Symptoms of Tension Headaches:
  • Body fatigue
  • Throbbing muscles
  • Lack of sleep
  • Lack of concentration
  • Dull head pain
Treatments for Tension Headaches:
  • Pain relieving medicine such as naproxen, Advil, and aspirin
  • Triptan relieves the pain of headaches
  • Combination drugs are more efficient in action than single-ingredient pain relievers
High blood pressure:

This is an age long condition where blood pressure in the arteries is continuously high. This can cause serious injury to the blood capillaries in the retina causing pain behind eyebrow or eyebrow pain; and if the situation is left unchecked, it could lead to loss of sight. Symptoms of this may include constant headaches and problems with sight such as blurred vision.

Symptoms of High Blood Pressure:
  • Constant headaches
  • Persistent nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Lightheadedness and dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Regular nosebleeds
Treatments for High Blood Pressure:
  • Doing regular exercise
  • Losing weight
  • Relaxation practices such as yoga
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Medication such as ACE inhibitors (angiotensin-converting enzyme)
  • Changing your diet
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An Aneurysm:

An aneurysm could be another reason why your eye hurts, or you develop eyebrow pain. Aneurysms occur when artery walls weaken causing them to bulge and eventually lead to internal bleeding.

This bulge is caused by blockages in the arteries that cause pressure build up. These blockages or impediments can be occasioned by fat deposits along the blood vessels; which is one of the reasons why hitting the gym and losing that weight is so important.

Symptoms of an Aneurysm:
  • Bleeding externally could indicate weakened blood vessels
  • A faster heartbeat
  • General body pain
  • A feeling of dizziness or lightheadedness
Treatments for Aneurysms:
  • High blood pressure can be treated by drugs such as lisinopril oral and atenolol oral
  • Symptoms brought about by high cholesterol can be reduced by drugs such as Lipitor oral Crestor oral and simvastatin oral.
  • Beta-blockers to lower blood pressure
 Conjunctivitis Disease:

Another reason why your eye hurts could be due to conjunctivitis. This is the inflammation of the conjunctiva, which is the tissue that covers the white part of the eye.

This nagging inflammation that causes your eyebrows to throb or cause eyebrow pain can be brought about by allergic reactions to things like pollen and dust, bacteria, irritants and viruses such as a common cold.

Symptoms of Conjunctivitis:
  • Abnormally teary eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • High light sensitivity
  • Nagging eye itch
  • Discolouring of the eye
Treatments for Conjunctivitis:
  • Irritants such as objects stuck in the eye can be treated by washing the eye
  • Bacteria related causes can be wiped out by antibiotics in the form of pills, eye drops or eye ointments
  • Virus-related cause such as a common cold should just be left to wear off, and the symptoms will go away naturally
  • Antihistamines should clear way allergy-related causes
Cluster Headaches:

Cluster headaches are characterized by sharp pain in the head that recurs during certain periods of the year. The fact that they come and go seasonally causes most to ignore them and choke them down to allergies.

This is a big mistake since cluster headaches could be symptomatic of something more serious. Cluster headaches affect one of the nerves in your face causing intense eyebrow pain. This definitely could be one the reasons why you have eyebrow pain.

Symptoms of Cluster Headaches:
  • Cluster headaches have clear symptoms;
  • Eye discolouration and a lot of tears
  • A runny nose akin that of a cold
  • An abnormally small pupil in the eye
  • Head discomfort
  • Fever
Ways to Treat Cluster Headaches:

Doctors may prescribe medicine to counter the pain as well as lessen the period in which the pain persists. Some the prescribed medicines could be;

  • Lithium
  • Prednisone
  • Sumatriptan shots
  • Verapamil
  • Ergotamine

By now, you could have got a clear idea of your question, why does my eyebrow hurt. Just pay attention to the symptoms you are experiencing along with eyebrow pain, and visit a physician if you find that something is wrong.

  1. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/chronic-sinusitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20351661
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health/temporal-arteritis
  3. https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/000793.htm
  4. https://www.healthline.com/health/eyelid-twitch
  5. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/tension-headache/symptoms-causes/syc-20353977
  6. https://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/guide/eye-disease-high-blood-pressure
  7. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/159283.php

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