If you suffer from headaches regularly, you know that it can be extremely debilitating and make it difficult to live your life normally.
There are over-the-counter pain medications that are available, but acetaminophen (Tylenol) is actually pretty dangerous and hard on your liver while NSAID pain relievers have been shown to cause infertility. Obviously, taking OTC pain medication should be done as seldom as possible so prevention is the key.
That being the case, there are five common habits that can cause headaches and if you are doing one or two of them, giving up the habit might just be the cure to your chronic headache condition.
If you have ever had too many drinks you likely know the massive headache of the morning after. This hangover effect is caused by dehydration and it is the same with caffeine.
Caffeine actually dehydrates your body even more quickly than alcohol does and having too much caffeine can cause severe headaches. However, be cautious when you are stopping caffeine because the withdrawal symptoms can also cause major headaches.
- Lack of Sleep
You probably don’t get enough sleep at night if you are like most Americans. Your headaches could be caused by this very thing.
When you don’t get the right amount of sleep, you can get headaches as well as other health problems. Most people get 6-7 hours of sleep per night when eight hours is actually what is recommended. Getting the right amount of sleep is also important for the energy that you need throughout the day.
- Skipping Meals
If you aren’t eating regular meals throughout the day, your blood sugar levels drop. This is one of the direct causes of headaches and it is easy to test for and solve.
All you have to do is, whenever you have a headache, note the time it is now and the time of your last meal. If you notice headaches when your last meal was several hours prior, you might want to take a snack with you to ensure that you are able to eat regular, small meals throughout the day.
- Being Dehydrated
People that use alcohol regularly, or people that drink coffee all day may not be aware of just how much their body needs water. If you get dehydrated you might not even feel thirsty, but you can feel a dehydration headache. Most people should be drinking 64 ounces of water per day, but it is based on your weight, so some people require a great deal more.
- Stress Headaches
You have probably heard the term “stress headache” before but weren’t really sure what it meant. A stress headache is simply a normal headache that is triggered by stress. It doesn’t necessarily have to be something that recently stressed you out, it could be a buildup of stress from working for several days in a row without a break, working too many hours or not having enough time for recreational activities and a chance to relax.