Nervous system

Pain in left temple of head-15 Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, 10 Treatments and Home Remedies

Pain in left temple of head is a very common condition which is experienced by many of us in our regular day to day life. Most often we get a dull ache in left temple region, but sometimes we might also suffer from severe stabbing pain in the temple region.

Most of the people suffer from pain in left temple due to excess stress and tension in this ever competitive world. Some people also suffer from pain in left temple due to sinusitis problems or due to consuming cold drinks and ice creams excessively which aggravate sinusitis or sinus problems.

But, there are times at which pain in left temple can indicate a serious underlying health ailment. We need to know all the possible causes of left temple pain to know the severity of our symptoms.

Pain in left temple Causes:

pain in left temple
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There are many causes of pain in left temple ranging from minor stress related or sinus related headaches to serious problems like the brain tumor, TMJ disorders, etc. So, let’s try to explore the causes of left temple pain.

1. Temporal Arteritis:

This condition is also known by the name of Giant Cell Arteritis. In this condition, there is inflammation or swelling of the temporal arteries which originate from the carotid artery in the neck. The exact reason behind the development of this condition is not clearly known, but scientists believe that this is caused by weak immune system or as an autoimmune condition.

In this condition, there is severe pain in the left temple, along with other symptoms like difficulty in opening the jaw or jaw claudication, fever, tiredness or fatigue, anorexia or loss of appetite, myalgia or muscle ache, muscle weakness, etc. These people can also experience blurring of vision.

It mostly occurs in people above the age of 50 years. It is associated with a condition called Polymyalgia rheumatica. There are elevated ESR levels in this condition. It can lead to permanent loss of vision if not treated promptly. High doses of corticosteroids like Prednisolone are used to treat this condition.

2. Tension headache:

A tension headache is a very common type of headache-causing pain in left temple. It is experienced by each and every one of us at least once in our lifetime. It is caused by stress and works related tensions in most of the people. It can also be caused by having an improper posture, insomnia or lack of sleep, inadequate food intake, nutritional deficiencies, etc.

Treatment of a tension headache is mainly with over the counter analgesics or painkillers like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, aceclofenac, etc. Other therapies like getting a massage done, doing regular meditation, yoga, etc also help a lot to reduce tension related pain in left temple.

Prevention is better than cure always in life. So, we need to aim at preventing the development of a tension headache in the long term. We need to eat a healthy diet, drink plenty of water, follow relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation, having a good posture during work and studies, etc.

3. Occipital Neuralgia:

It occurs when there is compression or injury to the nerves at the base of the skull or occipital nerves. It occurs due to many reasons like bad posture, cervical spondylosis, due to nature of profession in some people, etc.

The person suffering from occipital neuralgia has stabbing or severe pain in the neck, shoulder and also has pain in left temple. The affected person also feels sensitive to touch, and to the light.

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The treatment of this condition needs ample rest by the patients in a good posture. Patient needs to take over the counter analgesics or painkillers to get relief from the pain. Relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation help to some extent. You can also use a warm compress or heating pad around the neck.

Neck exercises which relax the neck muscles, when done with the guidance of physiotherapist are very useful. If there is no relief with the above measures, your physician might prescribe steroids or corticosteroids, and also muscle relaxants which help in reducing pain effectively.

4. Temporomandibular joint disorders:

It is abbreviated as TMJ disorders. These disorders involve derangement in the TMJ joint which connects the jaw or mandible with the temporal bone of the skull. It can occur due to various reasons like teeth grinding at night or bruxism, stress or tensions, arthritis, excess gum chewing, having problems with teeth on one side of the jaw making you chew on only one side of the mouth, etc.

We need to take over the counter analgesics to get pain relief. We also need to apply a cold compress or ice packs over the joint. We can also do TMJ exercises to relax the TMJ joint. Using a dental splint at night to give relaxation to the TMJ joint is very effective. In some people, Botox injections or surgical treatment might become necessary if they don’t respond to the above treatment.

5. Migraine:

Migraine is really a very troublesome type of a headache. A person suffering from Migraine usually has a one-sided headache, mostly as pain in left temple or right temple and on entire one side of the head. The pain can get aggravated even due to any sort of sound, light which makes it even more troublesome.

Once a person gets an attack of Migraine, the pain can persist for 4 hours to 3 days. There can also be other symptoms in Migraine sufferers like nausea, vomiting, blurring of vision, development of flashes of light in vision, etc.

Migraine is treated with analgesics as the first line treatment by the physicians. If there is no relief with the over the counter analgesics, then the Migraine patients are treated with other drugs like Ergotamine, etc. Some people might also need prophylactic drugs to prevent Migraine attacks like Propranolol. Lifestyle modifications like a healthy diet, relaxation techniques also help to get relief from Migraine. Magnesium deficiency is associated with Migraine as per research studies. So, get checked for magnesium deficiency, and take those supplements if you have Migraine.

6. Sinusitis:

The sinuses like frontal sinus, maxillary sinus, sphenoidal sinus or ethmoidal sinus are air-filled cavities in the skull. They can become inflamed or swollen due to allergies or infections with viruses or bacteria. Due to this, there is a pain in left temple, right temple, over the cheeks, pain over the eyes, etc. The patient also has a runny nose and heavy feeling in the head.

Sinusitis is mostly treated with anti-allergic drugs like antihistaminics. These people also benefit from steam inhalation and placing air humidifier in their bedroom. If the sinuses are infected with bacteria, and there is fever along with a headache, and runny nose, these people might also require antibiotics.

7. Stroke:

Stroke can manifest as weakness, numbness in the arms or legs, along with facial asymmetry and slurring of speech. Along with this, there can be a pain in left temple or right temple. Stroke can occur due to obstruction of blood vessels supplying the brain due to a blood clot or due to bleeding within the brain leading to hemorrhagic stroke.

The stroke needs timely treatment with various drugs depending on when the patient is taken to the physician after the onset of symptoms. If the patient is taken within 4 hours of onset of symptoms, he might be given thrombolytic drugs if it is an ischemic stroke diagnosed after looking at the CT scan. A healthy lifestyle is essential to prevent the stroke.

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8. Brain tumor:

Many people think they have a brain tumor if they have a severe headache. A severe headache has many other causes which occur more commonly, and not brain tumor. People who have brain tumor have a different pattern of a headache.

These people get a headache more commonly in the early morning, and they also have other symptoms like the blurring of vision, hearing problems, speech defects, excess nausea or vomiting, etc. Brain tumors are treated with various modalities of treatment like radiotherapy, chemotherapy, surgical removal based on the type of brain tumor.

9. Ice pick headache:

This type of a headache is associated with Migraine, and cluster headaches. In Ice headache, there can be a sudden stabbing pain in left temple or right temple and eye depending on the side of the head affected. They can be really very troublesome and need advice from a physician if they occur regularly or frequently.

10. Cluster headache:

It is a type of headache which is very common amongst the men in comparison to the women. In this condition also, only one side of the face is affected. People having this headache have headache several times as a cluster, each time headache lasting for several minutes.

The affected person also has a runny nose, and redness of eyes and lacrimation from the eyes. These attacks most commonly occur at night. These people are treated with analgesics, oxygen, and several other medications.

11. Nummular headache:

It is a rare type of headache-causing pain in left temple. This left temple pain can cover a distance of about 5 to 6 centimeters in the temple region. The pain is severe and stabbing like, It is also associated with tenderness or pain on touching the left temple area. There are also numbness and tingling sensations in the left temple region.

12. Cervicogenic headache:

In this type of headache, there is a pain in left temple or head, along with stiffness in the neck. This type of a headache develops due to abnormal neck posture, due to cervical spondylosis, etc. The affected person also has other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, photophobia or sensitivity to light, etc.

This type of headache can last for several hours to days. It is relieved by the use of analgesic tablets along with analgesic ointment application over the neck. Muscle relaxant tablets and neck exercises also help a lot.

13. Food-related headache:

Some people are allergic to certain ingredients in certain foods like sulfites, nitrates, MSG or Ajinomoto or monosodium glutamate. These ingredients might be present in certain Chinese foods, restaurants, etc.

If you are allergic to these types of ingredients, you might develop pain in left temple within first 30 minutes to 1 hour after eating the food. You might also experience other symptoms like skin rashes, breathing difficulties, sweating, etc.

You need to avoid eating these foods in the future. You will need to take antiallergic medications or even injections if the attack is severe to combat these allergic symptoms. So, you need to consult your physician for the treatment.

14. Medication side effect:

You can develop pain in left temple as a side effect of certain drugs. You might find this surprising, but drugs have many side effects. Some drugs can also cause pain in left temple as their side effect.

15. Trigeminal neuralgia:

Pain in left temple can also occur due to a condition called trigeminal neuralgia. In this condition, there is a sudden sharp electric shock-like pain on one side of the face. It can be triggered by chewing, while shaving, while touching the face with the hand, etc.

It can be caused due to several conditions where trigeminal nerve can be involved, like in multiple sclerosis, brain tumors, etc. It is treated with certain medications prescribed by a physician or neurologist.

Pain in left temple Symptoms and signs:

There can be many symptoms and signs that occur along with pain in left temple or left temple pain. These symptoms vary based on the exact condition you are suffering from. Not all symptoms are present in every person with left temple pain. But, some of the most common types of symptoms associated with pain in left temple are:

  • Severe pain, either dull or stabbing type in the left temple area
  • Burning in the eyes
  • Blurring of vision
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Vision disturbances
  • Shortness of breath
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The diagnosis of pain in left temple and its causes mainly depends on a detailed history and physical examination by your physician. So, you need to consult your physician if you have severe pain in left temple on a regular basis. We shall also discuss the exact symptoms when you have to consult your physician.

Your physician might also order appropriate radiological investigations or blood tests to diagnose your condition. The tests which are ordered by the doctor depending upon your symptoms and history.

When to see a doctor for pain in left temple or left temple pain:

Left temple pain should not be ignored without consulting a physician at all. You need to consult your physician if:

  • If you are over the age of 50 and have severe pain in left temple or mild pain that is not relieved with analgesics
  • If your young child is having severe pain in left temple
  • If you are having severe nausea or vomiting along with pain in left temple
  • If you are having severe left temple pain in the early morning
  • If you are having any symptoms of dizziness or lightheadedness
  • If you are having any arm weakness or leg weakness
  • If you have any asymmetry in your face
  • If you have any slurring of speech
  • If you have any hearing impairment or vision disturbances
  • If you have developed a sudden severe headache that you have never experienced in your lifetime

Pain in left temple Home Treatment and Home remedies:

There are many simple effective tips or home treatments that can help you with reducing your pain in left temple like:

1. Rest in dark room:

Resting in a dark, quiet room is very helpful in reducing the headache, as noise or sound, light can aggravate several types of headaches.

2. Cold compress:

Apply cold compress or ice pack over the head for quick relief from headache. But, don’t place ice directly over the head.

3. Take a hot shower:

Taking a hot shower or bath can be very relaxing, and can help you get relief from a headache, and it also relaxes you.

4. Relaxation techniques:

Stress or tension can cause several types of headaches, and they can aggravate them too. So, try to relax and stay calm using various relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation, pranayama, etc.

5. Healthy diet:

A healthy diet is essential for a healthy body, mind, skin. Nutritional deficiencies can also cause certain types of a headache or can aggravate them. So, try to eat a healthy balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins, and omega 3 fatty acids.

6. Massage:

You can massage your head and also scalp with any herbal oil or natural oil of your choice. This can improve blood circulation and oxygen flow to the head, and can help in reducing headache to some extent.

7. Walking in the fresh air:

Try to go out walking in fresh air early in the morning. It makes you physically fit, increases your mental agility, and also rejuvenates you. It surely reduces your headaches and prevents them in the long run.

8. Neck exercises:

Pain or stiffness in the neck can also lead to certain types of exercises. So, consult a physiotherapist and do neck exercises, and these exercises can help in reducing pain in left temple, if its caused by neck problems.

9. Ginger pepper Tulsi drink:

Ginger, pepper, and Tulsi leave or basil leaves have anti-inflammatory properties, and many beneficial effects on health. Make a decoction by boiling 5 to 6 Tulsi leaves which are crushed, 1-inch piece of ginger which is crushed, about 10 black peppercorns which are crushed, and 1 glass of water. Then filter the mixture after boiling for few minutes, and add some honey to it. It is very effective in reducing pain in left temple.

10. Reduce alcohol and caffeine:

Caffeine is found in chocolates, tea, and coffee. Caffeine can aggravate certain headaches. So, try to restrict its intake to a minimum. Also, reduce alcohol intake as it can aggravate the headaches.

You have seen all the possible causes of pain in left temple, their symptoms, how to diagnose it, and also various home remedies and treatment options for pain in left temple. Hope you find it useful.

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