“All of us at anxietycentre.com have experienced debilitating anxiety. But we’ve also overcome it and returned to normal and lasting health. Because we know the hardship anxiety unwellness can cause, we are committed to helping others, with over 30 years of service.” - Jim Folk, President, anxietycentre.com

Headaches, Sore Scalp, Tight Neck, Head Tension Anxiety Symptoms

Headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, head tension:

Your scalp feels sore, has shooting pains, or that the back of your neck and head are very tense.

You might also experience burning scalp or skin on your head, neck or any other place on your body.

It might also feel like there is a pressure in your head, or like there is a tight band around your head.

It might also feel like your scalp is sore or burning, yet there is no physical or medical reason for it.

The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms can persistently affect one area only, can shift and affect another area or areas, and can migrate all over and affect many areas of the head and neck over and over again.

The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms can come and go rarely, occur frequently, or persist indefinitely. For example, you may feel one or all of them once in a while and not that often, feel them off and on, or feel one or all of them all the time.

The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms may precede, accompany, or follow an escalation of other anxiety sensations and symptoms, or occur by themselves.

The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms can precede, accompany, or follow an episode of nervousness, anxiety, fear, and elevated stress, or occur ‘out of the blue’ and for no apparent reason.

The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms can range in intensity from slight, to moderate, to severe. They can also come in waves, where they are strong one moment and ease off the next.

The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms can change from day to day, and/or from moment to moment.

All of the above combinations and variations are common.

What causes the headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension anxiety symptom?

Anxiety causes the body to produce the stress response (also known as the fight or flight response). The stress response stresses the body. Stress causes the body's muscles to tighten. When the body becomes overly stressed, which we call stress-response hyperstimulation, the body can exhibit a wide variety of odd and unusual tension related symptoms. The headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms are an example of this.

How to get rid of the headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension anxiety symptoms?

Because this anxiety symptom is just a symptom of elevated stress, it needn't be a cause for concern. It will subside when you reduce your stress and give your body ample time to calm down. As your body's stress returns to a more normal level, symptoms of stress subside, including the headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms. Therefore, these types of symptoms needn't be a cause for concern.

Chapter 9 in the Recovery Support area of our website is our anxiety symptoms chapter. It contains detailed information about all anxiety symptoms, including what they are, why they occur, what you can do to eliminate them, and how many people experience them (the percentage of people who experience each anxiety symptom). Our anxiety symptoms chapter includes a more detailed description and explanation about the headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension anxiety symptoms.


The combination of good self-help information and working with an experienced anxiety disorder coach, counselor, or therapist is the most effective way to address anxiety disorder and its many symptoms. Until the core causes of anxiety are addressed - the underlying factors that motivate apprehensive behavior - a struggle with anxiety disorder can return again and again. Identifying and successfully addressing anxiety's underlying factors is the best way to overcome problematic anxiety.


For more information about our Anxiety Counseling option; our Available Anxiety Therapists; to Book An Appointment with one of our anxiety therapists; common Anxiety Signs and Symptoms; common Anxiety Attack Symptoms; the symptoms of panic attack disorder; anxiety Recovery Support area; information about Anxiety; and our Anxiety 101 section; or click on the appropriate link or graphic below:

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Authors: Jim Folk, Marilyn Folk, BScN. Last updated October 9, 2018.

anxietycentre.com: Information, support, and coaching/counseling/therapy for problematic anxiety and its sensations and symptoms, including the headaches, sore scalp, tight neck, and head tension symptoms.