AABP Integrative Pain Care

5 Common Headache Triggers to Remember

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An estimated 96% of Amercians experience headaches. For some, the headaches are frequent and triggered by things in their environment. Learn more about common headache triggers and how to avoid them.

If you’re prone to frequent headaches, it may be time to make lifestyle changes that help you avoid common headache triggers.

You can also find pain relief solutions at AABP Integrative Pain Care if you’re having trouble managing headaches on your own. Our pain management physicians specialize in minimally invasive treatments for different types of headaches, including migraines.

We can also help you identify potential headache triggers, so you can prevent headaches from developing.

5 common headache triggers

There are many things that can trigger a headache or migraine. Here are five of the most common headache triggers and some tips on how to manage them:

1.Excess stress

When you’re feeling stressed, your muscles in your neck and shoulders become tighter. When your muscles are tense for too long, it can trigger pain in your head.

You can minimize your risk for tension-related headaches by exercising daily and practicing good posture. Any time you feel tension, try rolling your neck gently from side to side to stretch your muscles. You should also explore stress reduction strategies you can use to prevent muscle tightness and head pain.

2. Alcohol use

Alcohol is a known trigger of cluster headaches and migraines. In some people, drinking only small amounts of alcohol is enough to cause pain. For others, the type of alcohol you drink may contribute to your headache.

Limit your use of alcohol and make sure to drink plenty of water to keep hydrated if you do plan to drink.

3. Poor sleep quality

If you’re not sleeping well or getting enough sleep every night, you may be susceptible to frequent headaches and migraines.

Establish a bedtime routine that involves going to bed and waking up at the same time each day. When possible, invest in a supportive pillow and mattress to keep your body and spine properly aligned during the night.

4. Strong smells

Many people experience a headache when exposed to strong smells. You may experience a headache if you often use or are around household cleaners, perfumes, or air fresheners.

Consider opting for fragrance-free soaps, cleaners, and other products if you can. If you’re bothered by strong smells at work, consider stepping outside to get fresh air or use a small fan to circulate the air around you.

5. Teeth grinding

Bruxism, or teeth grinding, causes tightness in the muscles of your jaw and can trigger frequent morning headaches. This condition can also lead to serious teeth damage.

If you’re grinding your teeth at night, schedule a visit with your dentist. They can fit you with a night guard to protect your teeth and keep your jaw relaxed.

Tips for identifying your headache triggers

One way to start identifying your headache triggers is to keep track of your circumstances when your headache starts.

When you start to feel a twinge of head pain, take note of what’s going on at the time, including:

  • Time of day
  • Where you are
  • What you ate or drank
  • Any other symptoms you have

This information can help you and our medical team pinpoint your headache triggers, so you can learn how to make the right changes to your lifestyle and diet.

Call the AABP Integrative Pain Care office near you to schedule a headache consultation or book an appointment online today.