A patient with continuous, all-day, every-day headaches with a history of such headaches lasting for a matter of years is likely to have a tension headache.
If the history is only a matter of months then other possible causes need to be considered:
- temporal arteritis in the elderly
- cerebral tumour - suspicious features are increasing severity, associated symptoms implying neurological dysfunction, or a change in headache in circumstances that raise intracranial pressure - straining, bending over, lying down. Note that other less sinister causes of headache may be aggravated by head jolt, a cough, or sneeze, etc.
- depression may be associated with continuous headaches.