Lifestyle, Tips

10 ways to prevent waking up with a headache

If we're going to be at our brilliant best, then we need to start the day correctly. We should be alert, energized, and ready to tackle the day. Alas, if we wake up with a headache, then this won’t be possible. We’ll have to spend the first few hours in pain, trying to put it behind us. While some people are more predisposed to getting headaches than others, it’s always important to remember that there are things you can do to keep them at bay. We take a look at ten ways to prevent those morning headaches from ruining your morning.



Master Your Bedroom to prevent waking up with a headache



Master Your Bedroom to prevent waking up with a headache


One of the most common types of headaches is a tension headache.[1] These, fortunately, aren’t the most painful, but they're still best to be avoided. The good news is that this isn’t so difficult; the causes of this headache can be remedied with your control. If a bedroom is too cold, or a pillow too hard or soft, then you run the risk of waking up with a headache. As such, focus on making your bedroom as comfortable for your body and mind as possible. Once you’re sleeping in the environment that’s best for you, you should see a reduction in the number of those morning headaches.



Ditch the Tech and prevent waking up with a headache



 Ditch the Tech and prevent waking up with a headache


To avoid headaches, our mind needs to be well-rested, and that’s not going to happen if we’ve had a disturbed night’s sleep. There’s been a big rise in sleep issues in recent years [2], and much of the blame can be put on technology, and how we use it. In order to get a good night’s sleep and avoid a potential morning headache, it’s important that we’re staying away from technological screens in the run-up to hitting the hay. Sleep experts recommend that you avoid screen time in the two hours leading up to when you want to fall asleep.[3] Your iPad, iPhone, or laptop may keep you entertained, but it’s also over stimulating your mind, which means you’ll need to wait for it to calm down before you can sleep.



Consistency to prevent waking up with a headache



An interrupted night’s sleep will also increase the chance of waking up with a morning headache.[4] While most of us have a casual approach to how much sleep we're getting each night, if you're suffering from headaches—or just want to get a better night’s rest—then it’s best to take a more regimented approach to hitting the hay. As part of a healthy sleeping routine, you should aim to go to bed and rise at the same time each day. It may take some getting used to, but if you’re routinely suffering from head pain in the morning, then it’ll be one more thing you can do to stop them from happening.




Prevent waking up with a headache by Eating and Drinking



Prevent waking up with a headache by Eating and Drinking



What we’re eating and drinking before we hit the hay also has a bearing on our chances of waking up with a headache. Some food and drink, for example, lead to a poor night’s sleep. [5] Take for instance if you’re drinking coffee too late into the day. In some cases, however, it’s what we’re not eating and drinking that can cause the issue. If you’ve decided to suddenly give up caffeine, the withdrawal process may involve a few headaches first thing in the morning. If you went to bed without eating any food whatsoever, then several things could happen that may lead to a headache in the morning—muscle tension, chemical imbalances, and dilation of the blood vessels.




Prevent waking up with a headache by being socially smart



And talking of drinking, we have to think about alcohol. It’s probably the number one cause of morning headaches in the world. Even if you normally wake up with a clear mind, all it takes is one too many drinks to have you waking up with a banging headache. But why does this happen? It’s because alcohol is a natural diuretic, which means it tells the body to flush out some of the things we need to feel good, such as vitamins, minerals, and salts. It doesn’t take long for these issues to manifest into a headache. [6]

So if you’re going to drink alcohol, it’s important that you’re doing so carefully. It’s advisable to drink a glass of water in between alcoholic drinks, and also to avoid drinking too much in the first place. It’s also recommended that you take steps to bring your hydration levels up before going to bed—one of the main problems with alcohol is that most people go to sleep with all that alcohol still in their system, and, because they’re asleep, they’re not able to hydrate themselves.




Calm the Mind to prevent waking up with a headache



Depression and anxiety are increasingly common in today’s society, and they’re also leading to an increase in people suffering from insomnia, which can lead to headaches. As we’ve mentioned, a bad night’s sleep is one of the leading causes of morning headaches. The good news is that much research has been conducted into how we can better manage mental health conditions. If you’re feeling weighed down under the strain of life, then try your hand at meditating or practicing yoga. Both have been shown to help alleviate the symptoms. [7] In some cases, medication may be required, but it’s important to note that some headaches can be  caused by overmedication. [8]




Stop Grinding Your Teeth to prevent waking up with headaches

One of the more frustrating aspects of waking up with a headache is that you don’t know what caused it. You’ve been asleep, and you can’t say for sure what changed during the hours you were unconscious. If it’s becoming a routine thing, it's worthwhile visiting your dentist, and having him or her check for signs of teeth grinding. This can put tremendous pressure on the muscles in your head, which can go into a spasm. [9] There are several things that you can do to stop yourself from grinding your teeth, but the best, easiest solution is to get a mouthguard. It’ll prevent the mouth from working overtime, and may also stop you from grinding your teeth altogether if you use it for long enough.




Prevent waking up with a headache by staying hydrated



Prevent waking up with a headache by staying hydrated


Hydration is an integral part of keeping headaches at bay. It can often be the single cause of a headache, and is also sometimes mixed in with other stresses, too. As such, it’s important that you’re sufficiently maintaining your hydration levels. Many people, for various reasons, don’t maintain their body’s hydration level as well as they should do. If you’re continually waking up with a sore head, it might be that you need to get more fluid into your system. When we’re properly hydrated, our body can work as it should. Indeed, there’s even some evidence to suggest that hydration not only prevents headaches, but can also get rid of the pain, too.



Underlying Issues

Though your morning headaches are likely to be related to one of the issues mentioned, there’s always a chance that something else is going on. As such, if you are experiencing regular headaches and there’s no obvious cause, you should consider taking a trip to the doctor, as any number of medical conditions can cause headaches.


Find What Works

Finally, keep in mind that the cause of your headaches might be a combination of the factors above. A good way to keep headaches at bay is to figure out what’s causing them, and then take steps to cut them out of your life. For example, one method is to keep a sleep diary, and then look for links between different headache episodes. Over time, something will come clear.







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