Suffering from Anxiety Headaches?
An anxiety headache is one of the most common types of headaches. It is also referred to as 'Tension headache'. Clearly, the cause in most cases is related to stress. It is usually a dull pain that feels like a tight band around the head or a weight on top of it. So why does stress lead to a headache? The exact co-relation is not known, but when you get stressed, the muscles around the head and eyes tighten. Some combination of hormones, body heat and muscles is likely to cause the headaches.
Anxiety Headache: Chronic or Episodic?
Anxiety or tension headaches can either be chronic or episodic, depending on their severity and time period. With an episodic headache, the pain is mild to moderate and occurs less than 15 times a month. If the headache lasts for more than 15 times a month, it is considered a chronic condition. If you are suffering from anxiety headaches regularly, it could be a warning sign that your life is going out of balance. It becomes important then to identify the sources of stress in your life and make realistic changes. Chronic stress must be addressed because it could be a contributing factor to more serious illnesses like heart disease.
Posture and Anxiety Headaches
Often the reason for the headache is stress but posture also plays a role in triggering an anxiety headache. Since the tension occurs in the neck and head muscles, wrong posture can often lead to a headache. Holding your head in a twisted position (while using the phone), bending your neck while you use a comb or leaning to read a book can all lead to the muscles tightening, thereby causing a headache.
Treating Anxiety Headaches
Since an anxiety headache is triggered by stress and tension, the solution is to reduce stress levels. This seemingly ‘simple’ solution is, however, not easy for many individuals to achieve. There are other things you can do to reduce the impact of an anxiety trigger:
- Identify the cause of stress: Try to determine what is bothering you and how best you can deal with the problem.
- Exercise regularly: Exercise is known to relieve muscle tension. Aerobics and relaxation techniques can certainly make a difference.
- Eating and sleeping on time: These are important factors in keeping stress levels low.
- Avoid dehydration: Drink enough water daily. A dehydrated body is far more prone to headaches.
- OVER THE COUNTER MEDICATIONS: FOR MILD HEADACHES THAT ARE ONLY EPISODIC, YOU COULD TAKE COMMON PAIN MEDICATION TO EASE THE HEADACHE.