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The causes of headaches, whether they are the common kind of tension or migraine
headaches, or any other kind, are usually the same. During the periods of stress, muscles in
the neck, head and face are contracted so tightly that they make tremendous pressure on the
nerves; headaches, taking many forms from a continuous dull pain to an insistent hammering
result. Although at least 50 % of American adults are estimated to suffer one or more
headaches per week, it is the 20 million migraine sufferers who are in special difficulties.
Migraines, which are mostly suffered by women, can entail tremendous, unrelieved pain.

Tension : Stress, anxiety
To contract: To make or become tighter, narrower
Tightly: Firmly, strongly
Tremendous: Great, remarkable
Pressure: Weight, force
Dull pain: Pain not felt distinctly
Insistent: Persistent
To hammer: To hit, to pound
To estimate: To guess, to calculate approximately
To entail: To necessitate, to involve
Unrelieved: Constant, chronic
II. EXERCISES: Complete the sentences with a suitable form of the words? defined
1. His stomach .... so fiercely, she nearly threw up
2. Most new actors have .... optimism, as indeed they must, for without belief in
themselves training is just a huge waste of time.
3. The peace in the harbor area was undisturbed, except for the .... and mildly annoying
buzz of flies.
4. Returning from a training exercise one night, Stirling tripped over the guy ropes of his
tent and cut his eye quite badly, which .... a return to hospital.
5. In her .... way she asked Jane for the loan of a field in which to hold a charity fair.
1. It is obvious in the passage that.............
a. tension and migraine headaches are common to all people
b. headaches can have a variety of symptoms
c. tension or migraine headaches are suffered by about half of American adults
d. headaches always produce the same result
e. headaches contract the neck, hand, and face
2. In America
a. a majority of adults has at least one headache a week
b. only women suffer migraines
c. over 20 million men suffer migraines
d. a majority of the headaches suffered are migraine headaches
e. adults suffer more headaches
3. We understand from the passage that .......................
a. women suffer tremendous, unrelieved pain when they have migraines.
b. female migraine sufferers experience great pain.
c. Women have special difficulties when they have headaches.
d. Migraines are only suffered by women and cause unrelieved pain.
e. All sufferers of migraine, usually women, can experience great, continuous