Know your headache triggers

Headaches are a debilitating condition that affect many individuals in North America. While pain medications are effective for some, not everyone responds well to them. Finding what triggers a headache and treating the root cause can help reduce the frequency and duration of headaches. There are several things that can trigger this pain:

 

 

  1. Food sensitivities:

Many foods can either cause inflammation in the body or lead to an immune response, which can lead to pain. Food sensitivities are different from “allergies” as they are caused due to a different immune reaction in the body. Food triggers are distinctive for every individual and can be determined through testing or tracking. Research shows that eliminating food’s that trigger headaches can reduce headache occurrences.

 

  1. Stress:

In today’s day and age, a stressful life has become then new normal. As much as we would like to be relaxing on a beach, our work, relationships and even social media add to our already stressed state. Headaches triggered by stress are termed tension headaches that affect the neck, shoulders and head. They are often a result of tight muscles that are triggered by stress.

 

  1. Dehydration:

Up to 60% of our body is made up of water. Water is essential in the functioning of many organs and many reactions in the body. Lack of water intake, excess sweating or any process that reduces bodily fluids can cause a headache. When the water content in the body is low, the brain pulls away from the skull which can cause pain. A person’s required daily water intake varies based on age, weight and other factors.

 

  1. Hormones:

For many women, experiencing headaches before they menstruate is a common occurrence. These types of headaches are often caused due to excess estrogen or a fluctuation in sex hormones.  Pre-menstural headaches can be experienced upto 1-2 days before your period or on day 1 of your period. They are often accompanied with nausea, vomiting and other hormonal concerns.

 

  1. Other:

Other triggers that have been linked to headaches are caffeine withdrawal, the weather (rain or increased pressure), tight muscles due to bad posture or poor sleep.

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