8 Common Headache Triggers, and What to Do About Them

Published August 23rd, 2021 by Devteam

Did you know that half to three-quarters of people in the world have a headache every year? Headache disorders are the third-highest leading cause of disability. If you have chronic headaches, you may miss out on work, life, and more.   

There are more than 150 types of headaches, with varying triggers. If you struggle with headaches, keep reading to learn common headache triggers and what to do about them. 

One: Stress

Are you wondering what triggers tension headaches? Or what migraine headache triggers are? Stress is one of the common triggers for both of these types of headaches.

There are two types of stress that can trigger headaches, physical stress, and emotional stress. Physical stress includes things that would fall under the category of ergonomics. This could include poor posture and eye strain. 

When you are dealing with emotional stress it can trigger headaches due to chemical interactions in your body. Stress can also trigger headaches by causing tight muscles in your neck and shoulders. 

It is important to deal with stress to help relieve your headaches. This could include, reducing factors that impact physical stress, taking time for self-care, eating healthy, or talking to someone.

If you are experiencing chronic physical or emotional stress, visiting your chiropractor to deal with the tight muscles in your neck and shoulder will help.

Two: Diet

Diet is one of the common cluster headache triggers. It is also a trigger for migraines and many other types of headaches. 

Certain foods such as gluten or dairy in individuals who are intolerant can trigger headaches. However, it does not need to be just food intolerances. 

Eating a diet that is full of processed foods can also trigger headaches. These foods include things such as yellow food dyes, nitrates, nitrites, or monosodium glutamate, all of which can trigger headaches.

If you believe that diet may trigger your headaches, eating clean and avoiding processed foods may help. You could also consider testing to check for food sensitivities or an elimination diet. 

Three: Environment

Sinus headache triggers commonly include the environment. Allergies, including seasonal allergies, can cause sinus infections which in turn trigger headaches. 

However, at times you can also have migraines with sinus symptoms. However, what triggers headaches when it comes to environmental triggers, goes beyond just allergies. 

Environmental triggers can also include barometric pressure changes, air quality, odors, bright sunlight, and flickering lights. There are some environmental triggers that can be more difficult to avoid. 

However, reducing the environmental triggers that can get reduced will help. 

Four: Caffeine Withdrawal

If you regularly consume caffeine, stopping caffeine consumption suddenly can trigger headaches. Interestingly, caffeine can also be used to treat headaches. 

Caffeine causes blood vessels to narrow, thus reducing pain. When you stop consuming caffeine those blood vessels widen again. This causes headaches by increasing blood flow around the brain and putting pressure on the surrounding nerves. 

If your headaches are due to caffeine withdrawal they can last for an extended period of time. Consider reducing your caffeine intake slowly to avoid this. 

Five: Sleep

A lack of sleep can affect many parts of your life, it can also trigger headaches. Specifically, a lack of REM sleep can trigger migraines. Your body creates proteins that can be linked back to chronic pain. 

When you are not getting enough REM sleep your body creates more of these proteins. These proteins decrease your body's pain threshold. 

Increasing your REM sleep can help with this. You can do this by developing a sleep schedule, setting up a bedtime routine, getting regular exercise, and more. 

What most people do not know is that going to the chiropractor can also help with sleep. Chronic pain and migraines can be a big component in lack of sleep. Seeing a chiropractor can help with pain issues, reduced pain will help you sleep better. 

Six: Alcohol Intake

Drinking alcohol can trigger migraines and cluster headaches. What's important to note, is that just a few sips can trigger this. 

If you are a beer drinker, this can go back to diet. Beer contains gluten. Gluten can trigger headaches in individuals who are intolerant. 

Another factor is that alcohol can dehydrate you because it acts as a diuretic. Make sure that when you are drinking you remember to drink water as well. 

Monitor your headaches, if you find yourself commonly getting headaches when you drink, consider reducing your alcohol intake. 

Seven: Computer Overuse

There are several ways that spending too much time on your computer can trigger headaches. One of the common triggers is eye strain. 

As you are looking at your computer, your eyes are constantly needing to focus. Your eyes working to focus where they should versus where they want to can cause eye strain and eye fatigue.

This in turn can trigger a headache. When you spend most of your day staring at a computer screen be sure to take breaks every hour. 

Lighting in the room you are in and glare on your computer screen can also cause headaches. You can decrease this by turning down the lights in the room you are in or adjusting your monitor settings. 

A third-way computer overuse can trigger headaches is through poor posture. Make sure that when you are working on your computer you are sitting correctly with good posture. 

If you are experiencing a lot of pain from bad posture, consider visiting your chiropractor. 

Eight: Hair Tie Headaches

Ladies, did you know that your hair tie can cause headaches? If your ponytail is tied up too tightly, this pulls at the nerves in your head.

This can cause headaches. However, you are more likely to get ponytail headaches if you already experience other types of headaches.

One way to relieve ponytail headaches is by loosening the pull. You can do this by taking your down. In addition, if you need your hair up there are special hair ties made for those that struggle with ponytail headaches or you can try scrunchies.

Reduce Headache Triggers

Reducing headache triggers can help with your pain. There are also other things you can do to help with headaches, including visiting your chiropractor. 

Ocean Chiropractor is here to help you. We have a welcoming and inviting team that is ready to support you. Schedule your appointment today and get relief from your headaches.

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