Headaches are among the most common nervous system disorders, impacting nearly half of the global population. Unfortunately, many individuals with chronic headaches don’t realize that much of the power to stop them is in their hands.
Dr. David Wu, our pain management and headache specialist at CurePain, is on a mission not only to bring advanced treatments to his patients but also to give them the tools they need to take control of their own health and stop headaches before they start.
Here are a few straight-from-the-expert headache hacks you can start using today.
One of the best ways to prevent a headache is to be able to know when it’s coming. How is that possible? By keeping a headache diary.
We encourage our patients to log each headache and the contributing factors, including the time of day the headache occurred, which medications you’re taking, the severity and location of your headache pain, other accompanying symptoms, and what worked to resolve your headache.
It’s also a good idea to track how and when you slept, what you’ve had to eat and drink, and the types of exercises you’ve done or not done that day.
All of this information gives you insight into what triggers your headaches and helps you get out in front of them. It also helps us better tailor your treatment plan when we can pinpoint what causes your headaches.
Once you have a better idea of when a headache starts, you can take the necessary steps to stop it in its tracks. Always have your medication on hand and take it as soon as you feel a headache coming on.
There are now prescriptions and supplements that work to prevent a headache long before it starts. If they’re right for you, Dr. Wu may prescribe them as an added protection against headaches.
Healthy sleeping and eating habits are crucial if you suffer from chronic headaches. We like to say that consistency is key. Do your best to eat and sleep at the same times and the same amounts every day.
This helps you establish patterns and prevents your body from nutrient deficiency and sleep deprivation, which are common headache triggers.
Hydration and headaches are closely linked. And if you’re dehydrated, it may be the culprit behind your headaches. Strive to drink at least one full glass of water with every meal and kick your soda habit.
Caffeine can be dangerous for those with chronic headaches, especially if you’re sensitive to caffeine. Caffeine is also a diuretic, which means it causes you to eliminate more fluid from your body, potentially leading to dehydration.
We advise our headache patients to cut caffeine from their routine or at least consume the exact same amount of caffeine every day to maintain consistency.
You don’t need to become a cross trainer or sign up for the next marathon, but we do recommend getting regular aerobic exercise. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and yoga workouts can work as a preventive medication and ward off a headache attack.
Could it be that your living and working spaces are setting off your headaches? Bright screens, harsh lighting, strong aromas, and other offensive environmental factors could be the problem.
Try removing some of these possible triggers and work in a break from your screens to help keep headaches at bay.
If you’d like more information about headaches and how you can avoid them, don’t hesitate to request an appointment online or over the phone at our Torrance, California, location.