The headache intensity describes the severity of the pain. In headache diagnostics and in scientific studies of headaches the intensity of the pain is usually described in a verbal 4-point rating scale:
- 0=no pain
- 1=mild pain
- 2=moderate pain
- 3=severe pain
Alternatives are for example:
- The visual analogue scale (VAS) uses a line with or without gradation. The pain intensity can be marked on the line between the endpoints.
- The numeric rating scale (NRS) specifies a numerical series for example from 0 to 10.
The VAS and NRS have not proven to be very practical in headache therapy which is why the 4-point scale is favored.