Experiencing a headache may be a common condition, but the discomfort, pain and nausea that manifest as a result are certainly not easy for many people to deal with.
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Headaches can range greatly in severity, from a mild, short-term throbbing sensation to an excruciatingly painful migraine that last for hours or even days. If you suffer from headaches on either an occasional or frequent basis, then you may be curious about the factors that cause the condition and the ways in which you can best prevent re-occurrences. Consider the 10 key causes of headaches described as follows, and see if you can determine the triggers that might affect your health.
1. Hormonal Imbalances
If you are a woman who is prone to headaches, then the cause may be related to your fluctuating hormone levels. A decrease in estrogen levels just prior to menstruation is a common trigger. Find relief through supplements that balance hormones and adequate hydration.
2. Ear, Nose And Throat Infections
Sudden headaches may be either an early warning sign or a resulting symptom of ear, nose and throat infections. Inflammation of these areas can cause pressure on the nerves within your head, leaving you prone to aches, throbbing and pain. Seek treatment for these ailments as early as possible.
3. Side Effect Of Medications
Although your prescription medications may be highly useful in treating various health complications, some have the potential to cause headaches as a side effect. Notify your doctor if you think that your prescription might be triggering headaches – an alternative medication without this side effect may be available.
4. Eyestrain Due To Lighting
Lighting that is harsh or glaring in nature, such as lit screens on electronic devices, direct sunlight or bright lamps, may contribute to eyestrain. This in turn can result in frontal headaches and vision problems. Limit your exposure to this type of lighting by keeping your screens at a dim setting and working in softly-lit areas.
5. Neck And Back Strain From Bad Posture
The manner in which you position your body as you sit, stand and move about can bring on headaches if your neck and back muscles are tense and strained. Strive to improve your posture and decrease headache symptoms – keeping your head and shoulders upright can help a great deal.
6. Anxiety And Stress
Stress, worry and anxiety not only have the potential to affect your mental health but also may contribute to physical health issues such as headaches. Consult a medical professional or wellness practitioner for advice on treating anxiety-related headaches through medications, supplements, breathing techniques or relaxation exercises.
7. Food-Related Sensitivities
You may be sensitive to certain foods and beverages that are linked to tension headaches. Examine your diet to see if you ingest high quantities of caffeine, dairy, aspartame, chocolate or alcohol, all of which have the ability to trigger headaches in people with innate sensitivities.
8. Poorly Regulated Sleep Cycles
Regular and restful sleep for approximately seven to eight hours per night is ideal for preventing fatigue-related chronic headaches. Consider undergoing a sleep study if you suspect that your headaches are connected to interrupted or sporadic sleep cycles, restless sleep, insomnia or oversleeping.
9. Overexertion During Exercise
Though physical activity is great for keeping your body in shape, if you push yourself too hard, you might find yourself with a headache caused by swollen blood vessels in your neck or head. Take small breaks while exercising to drink water, breathe deeply and prevent the effects of overexertion.
10. Lack Of Brain Hydration
When you fail to drink enough water to stay sufficiently hydrated, your brain tissue may actually shrink, opening the door for headaches to develop. Avoid these bothersome headaches by drinking plenty of fluids; the equivalent of eight glasses of water per day is a general guideline to follow.