Top 10 Causes of Headaches

 By: Sandra Browne
Research reveals that tens of millions of Americans suffer from headaches every year. Of those millions, it's reported that 12% suffer from what doctors diagnose as severe migraines. Headaches are annoying and painful but the most frustrating part of having a headache is not knowing what you could have done to cause it.

Fortunately, we've put together a list of the 10 most common causes of headaches. Avoiding what causes headaches may reduce the number of incidences each year.

Here are the top 10 causes of headaches (in no particular order):

1. Stress. Stress is easily one of the most common causes of headaches. The best way to reduce headaches caused by stress is to work out or meditate to relax your nerves and keep your stress levels at a minimum.

2. Eating. Your eating habits can have a huge impact on your health. Choosing to eat unhealthy foods like chips, chocolate and processed meats and cheeses will increase the likeliness that you'll suffer from headaches. Eating fresh vegetables and fruits and drinking lots of water will help to prevent headaches.

3. Eye Strain. Eye strain is often associated with headaches. Squinting your eyes for an extended period of time (or exposing your eyes to fluorescent lighting) can impact the nerves in your head and trigger headaches. If you're working on a computer, try using an anti-glare screen or ask your doctor for an anti-glare prescription for your glasses.

4. Lack of Sleep. Getting less than 7 hours of sleep a night can trigger a headache. Your body needs at least 7 hours of sleep to function.

5. Too Much Sleep. Getting less than 7 hours of sleep a night can spark headaches but getting more than 11 hours of sleep can have the same effect. 8-10 hours of restorative sleep a night is ideal.

6. Sitting. It might be hard to believe but sitting in one place for too long can cause headaches. Make sure you stand for at least 10 minutes every hour to loosen up your muscles and keep them from tensing up. This will help eliminate your chance of headaches.

7. Smoke. Smoke is a leading cause of headaches. While this is common knowledge for most people, what some don't realize is that individuals who don't smoke can still be severely affected by it and can ultimately suffer from headaches because of second-hand smoke.

8. Loud Noise. Any type of loud noise can trigger a headache. Likewise, being around loud noise will make it extremely difficult to get rid of a headache.

9. Hangover. Many would agree that a headache caused by a hangover is self-induced. The only way to get rid of a hangover headache is aspirin, water and time.

10. Medication Side Effects. Headaches are a common side effect of most medications. If you need the medication, there's really no way of getting around the side effects.
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