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10 Easy Tips To Help Reduce Headaches

Aug 17, 2007
The average headache is caused more by stress than any other factor. Relieving the pain (and preventing them altogether), can be fairly easy for most patients. Some of the ways anyone can help relieve the most common headaches include:

1: Stress Management and Relaxation.
Physical and emotional stresses are proven headache inducers. Taking warm baths, practicing deep breathing exercises, and just taking the time to read a good book can all help reduce stress and prevent chronic headaches. Some other common techniques used for stress and headache reduction include: deep muscle massage, listening to soothing music, or taking 20 minutes every day to just relax quietly in a room by yourself.

2: Getting Proper Sleep.
Exhaustion and fatigue have both been linked to headaches. Getting on - and staying on -- a regular sleep routine can have a dramatic effect on the number of headaches one experiences. Insomnia too, is a major headache trigger. Sleep experts recommend practicing a regular bedtime routine to signal your body that it will soon be time to settle down for the night. Go to bed at the same time every evening, and get up at the same time too, even on weekends, holidays and during vacations.

3: Avoiding Triggers.
Every headache has a set of triggers, and every headache sufferer can learn what theirs are by paying close attention to everything that was eaten, experienced and exposed to, prior to the onset of symptoms. For some, it's the daily stress of helping children with homework, cooking dinner and cleaning up, that causes a headache, while for others it may be allergies or even specific foods that were eaten. Once you've recognized specific triggers, do everything possible to completely avoid them, or at least limit exposure to them.

4: Preventative Care.
Preventative care of headaches can be as simple as seeing your doctor for an annual exam to make sure that you're healthy, to taking preventative headache medications when symptoms become all-to-common and more severe.

5: Exercising Regularly.
Unless it has been determined that physical exertion is a headache trigger for a specific patient, engaging in a regular exercise regime is not only healthy, it can help reduce or eliminate headaches altogether.

6: Eating a Well-Balanced Diet.
An empty stomach, or drastically reducing your daily intake of important vitamins, minerals and proteins found in fruits, vegetables, meats and poultry can all spur a headache. Sudden rises and dips in glucose levels have also been attributed to some headaches. Watch fad diets carefully to ensure that you are getting the nutrients your body needs, and never skip meals. When unable to sit down and eat a regular meal, grab a healthy snack to avoid a headache.

7: Limiting Exposure to Smoke, Odors and Perfume.
Certain fumes and vapors can initiate a migraine headache, even in people who rarely, if ever, have experienced one. Perfumes can also be a culprit, as can smoke-filled and poorly ventilated areas. Avoid these when you can, or get regular intervals of fresh air when contact with these fumes is unavoidable to reduce the risk of a headache.

8: Treating Underlying Medical Conditions.
High blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity are just some of the underlying diagnosis that may cause headaches. Sufferers who experience a sudden onset of symptoms, or worsening pain, should consult a physician if their headaches either don't go away, or continue to return despite treatment.

9: Taking A Multi-Vitamin.
It is often found that people who suffer from frequent headaches, including migraines, also suffer low magnesium levels. Magnesium has a relaxing effect on smooth muscle, such as blood vessels. When levels get too low, muscles tense, causing headaches. Most experts agree that taking a 500 to 750 mg. supplement of magnesium every day may reduce the occurrence of headaches.

10: Drink In Moderation.
It's a fact, alcohol cannot only cause a headache, it can also worsen the severity during an attack. When going out for an evening of fun and drinking, remember to follow these important tips to reduce a headache:

Sip your drink slowly.
Drink mixed drinks containing fruit or vegetable juice to help lesson the negative effects of the alcohol.
Alternate drinking non-alcoholic with alcohol-containing drinks.
Avoid red wine. It contains tyramine, a proven headache inducer. Go for the white wine instead.
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