Are you one of those temple-rubbing, nose-bridge-pinching, constantly wincing headache people? If so, then you know the misery of having chronic headaches. And you also know the constant, epic search to find a way to cure them, once and for all.
That's because headaches are a real chore. When your head is throbbing, life suddenly becomes extra difficult. Sounds are just too much, it's tough to concentrate at work, and all you really want to do is go back to bed. And yet you power through, day after day, with your temples pounding. It's really no fun at all.
The good news is that it's totally normal to get a headache from time to time. And even the occasional chronic headache is nothing to worry about. You can chalk it up to needing a snack, or a bit more sleep, and it really doesn't feel like a big deal. That is until they stick around for a little longer than you'd like— then you really start to worry.
Occasionally, a headache can be a sign of something more serious. If your headache comes on suddenly, or is particularly excruciating, then you should go see a doctor right away. You should also get them checked out if they seem to be happening more frequently than usual, or don't improve when you take over-the-counter drugs.
As for your normal, everyday headaches, some pretty benign stuff might be to blame. If you're struggling with daily pains, then one of these simple factors may be the cause.
1. You're All Hunched Up
If you spend all day hunched over your laptop, hanging your head to see your phone, and just generally moping your way through life, then you're pretty much guaranteed to get muscle-related headaches. According to Jackie Lohrey on LiveStrong.com, "Poor posture pits muscle control against the forces of gravity ... The added strain puts pressure on the nerves in your neck and keeps upper back and neck muscles in a constant state of contraction, causing headaches." To prevent this type of headache, start paying attention to how you sit and the way you walk, and try get yourself some better posture ASAP.
2. There's Too Much Stress In Your Life
Of course everyone has stress in their life. But when a crazy, hectic schedule gets to be too much, it's normal to get something called a tension headache. These annoying, dull headaches cause aching pains, tightness in the forehead, and tenderness in the neck and shoulders. Tension headaches can even become chronic, just like your stress, so get your life under control as soon as you can.
3. Hello, You Have A Hangover
One can expect a throbbing headache after a big night of drinking, but it doesn't always require a raging party to throw your body out of sorts. Even if you only had one glass of wine, alcohol may still be to blame. That's because alcohol causes dehydration, which can lead to headache. Staying up late, and drinking a lot of coffee to compensate, are two things that go hand-in-hand with drinking, and both can make headaches worse.
4. You Have A Case Of Eye Strain
Eye strain occurs when your eyes get tired from intense use. This happens when you stare unblinkingly at your computer screen all day, or drive tirelessly through the night. Symptoms of eye strain include blurry vision, dry eyes, and you guessed it — headaches.
5. The Pollen Is Doing More Than Making You Sneeze
Everyone who has seasonal allergies knows the joy of sniffly and sneezing your way through half the year. But did you know allergies can also cause headaches? In fact, they are aptly named "allergy headaches." And they usually occur when the sinuses are so swollen that the openings into the nasal passages are obstructed, stopping normal drainage and causing pressure to build up. It's gross, but it explains why it feels like your face is going to fall off.
6. You Went Overboard With The Chanel No. 5
Bathing yourself in your favorite perfume may seem like a lovely way to start the day, but walking around all day with too much scent can trigger a headache. The same goes for household cleaners and fragranced air fresheners. For those sensitive to strong smells, it's best to stay away from anything with such a strong odor.
7. You Have A Habit Of Skipping Lunch
I know, I know, you're super busy. But there's really no reason to skip lunch, especially when doing so can lead to a headache. As Pam Murphy notes on LiveStrong.com, "When your blood sugar drops, your body releases hormones to counter low glucose levels, which can trigger a headache." Make sure you always carry a snack, so even when life gets in the way of a sit-down lunch, you'll still have something on hand to get you through.
Headaches are a real pain (pun totally intended). If you're getting them all the time, it's important to try to figure out what's triggering them, and then make some lifestyle changes so you can go on with your life, pain free.