Know Your Pain

Waking Up to a Headache Every Morning

Many people wake up to a headache every morning. This kind of headache is known as a morning headache. A morning headache is a kind of a tension headache that develops as soon as the person wakes up.

Episodic or chronic morning headache
Some people experience more frequent attacks of morning headaches. The frequency could be more than 15 days in a month. This is known as chronic headache. Sleep apnea is believed to be the primary cause of chronic morning headaches. In sleep apnea, a person stops breathing several times in the night and also experiences teeth grinding and periodic limb movements.

People suffering from hypertension or musculoskeletal diseases are also a common victim of chronic morning headaches. Chronic morning headache is also common with people who take anti anxiety drugs or consume more than six alcoholic drinks a day.

On the other hand, there are some people who suffer from morning headaches occasionally. This is known as episodic morning headache. Episodic morning headache is generally triggered by anger, stress, or anxiety.

There are several factors that can cause a morning headache. Some of them are given below.

* Lack of sleep. People who sleep less than 8 hours a day often find themselves to be victims of a morning headache.
* Tension producing sleeping positions. There are certain sleeping positions that induce stress in the body. Sleeping in these positions can also result in a headache.
* Stress. Stress- physical or emotional, anxiety or depression can also lead to a morning headache.
* Hard or an uncomfortable pillow. One should always choose pillows with great care and caution. Pillows that are hard or uncomfortable can trigger a headache.

Other than the above mentioned causes, there are several other factors as well that can trigger a headache. These triggers may vary from person to person. It is important that you know your triggers ad avoid them to stave off a headache.

* Physical over activity
* Eye strain
* Driving for long hours
* Sinusitis
* Smoking
* Working in one position for a long time
* Sexual activity
* Nasal congestion
* Over consumption of caffeine

Diagnosis and treatment
Your doctor will ask you a couple of questions about your lifestyle. Make sure you provide your doctor with as much information as possible. If sleep apnea is the cause of your morning headache then you might be treated using a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device worn at night to prevent interruptions in breathing during sleep.

Changes in your lifestyle such as healthy eating and sleeping right can help manage morning headaches. You an also seek the help of over the counter medications such as analgesics and other pain relievers.