If you are dealing with a chronic headache issue, you may have realized that certain behaviors lead to more frequent episodes. If you are struggling to determine what activities lead to headaches, knowing some of the more common triggers can provide you with a starting point for examining your own lifestyle. With that in mind, we’re going to look at 10 things that may be contributing to your chronic headache condition and how to get them under control. Then we will focus in on a natural way to get long-term relief from headaches.
If you experience a great deal of stress or anxiety in your life, this can certainly increase the frequency with which headaches occur (not to mention a ton of other symptoms). If you suffer from a generalized anxiety disorder, you may need to seek help from a healthcare professional. If your stress is related to work, family, and other external circumstances, you may be able to reduce your anxieties by means of relaxation techniques, regular exercise, a new hobby, or taking an occasional vacation.
Bright lights and glare can both contribute to headaches. If you spend a lot of time in front of computer screens, consider turning down the brightness or getting glasses with a coating that protects your eyes from blue light. Sunglasses can help you to keep headaches away when the sun is bright.
#3 Loud or Repetitive Noises
Loud and unexpected noises can cause a headache, but so can repeating sounds. This could be related to stress as sound can grate on a person’s nerves. However, calming sounds or white noise may be able to block out the noise that leads to headaches. You may want to invest in earbuds for when you have to be in noisy surroundings.
#4 Missing a Meal
Don’t skip meals if you get headaches. It could just be a sign of low blood sugar. Another possible way to combat this type of headache is to eat smaller meals but to eat more often. This can help to provide fluctuations in blood sugar levels.
Check to see if any of your prescription or over-the-counter medications have headaches as a side effect. You also want to consider whether you are taking headache medications too often. Most of these pills cause rebound headaches if you take the medication too often, so the “cure” may be causing the next episode and perpetuating the cycle.
#6 A Sedentary Lifestyle
Yes, you can trigger a headache by overdoing it, but you can also have more headaches if you spend most of your time seated. If you sit all day at work (not to mention on your commute), you will want to speak with your physician about the right routine of moderate exercise for you.
#7 Poor Posture
Headaches and migraines are both frequently linked to neck pain. If you suffer from a chronic headache condition, you should check your posture. This is something to consider whether you are sitting in a car or at a desk, standing and walking, or even when you choose a sleep position.
#8 Food Sensitivities
If you have an allergy or a sensitivity to certain foods, a headache may be one of your symptoms. Common sensitivities that lead to headaches include gluten, MSG, artificial sweeteners, and caffeine. Alcohol can also lead to headaches because it dehydrates a person. Alcohol should be consumed in moderation, and don’t forget to drink plenty of water.
#9 Hormone Fluctuations
The majority of headache conditions are more common for women than men (with cluster headaches being the rare exception). Estrogen levels are a primary trigger for headaches, so this trend makes sense. Women may experience more frequent or severe headaches during menses, pregnancy, and menopause.
#10 Sleep Disruptions
You may feel a headache coming on any time your sleep schedule is thrown off. Whether you stay up too late, get up during the night, have to be up early, or take a trip across time zones, the end result could be a headache. Try to maintain as regular of a sleep schedule as possible in order to limit headaches from sleep disruptions.
A Better Way to Get Natural Relief from Chronic Headaches
If you are personally struggling with headaches on a regular basis, we’d like to introduce you to upper cervical chiropractic care. This subspecialty of chiropractic relies on precision and involves very gentle adjustments. The low force corrections are probably unlike anything you usually associate with chiropractic care. There is no twisting or popping of the neck, which makes this a safe form of care for every member of the family from infants to the very elderly.
As we mentioned earlier, the neck and headaches are often linked. For example, the most common form of headache – tension headaches – often starts with tension in the neck and shoulders. Migraines are also linked to neck problems with about three quarters of patients experiencing neck pain either before or during a migraine attack.
If you are suffering from a chronic headache condition, especially if you have a history of head or neck trauma, we encourage you to seek out an upper cervical chiropractor near you. You may be a few gentle corrections away from receiving significant health benefits. Some patients have even found themselves headache-free after discovering this natural form of care.