Why am I Waking Up with Headaches Every Morning

You’re not the only one who experiences a throbbing headache when you first wake up. 

Millions of people battle headaches every day, whether in the morning or at other times of the day, about 1 in every 13 individuals is plagued by headaches in the morning. 

People between the ages of 40 and 65 are most frequently affected by these headaches, and women are typically more likely to experience them than men.

A headache upon waking can be brought on by a number of health conditions or sleep disorders as well as individual habits. 

Common causes include lack of sleep, migraines, tension and sleep apnea. 

Why do I have a headache every morning when I wake up


 

You might awaken with a headache, though, if you grind your teeth, drink alcohol, or take certain medications. 

Sometimes a number of disorders or bad habits work together to cause your headache in the morning.

Here are a few typical reasons why people get headaches in the morning.

 

Causes of Morning Headaches

Your brain begins to “wake up” in various ways as you move from sleep to wakefulness. 

Your brain becomes more alert to changes in the way your body feels, to touch, and to sound.

You may be more sensitive to pain at this time because of your increased sensitivity.

The brain’s hypothalamus is also involved in the processes of pain and sleep. 

Your circadian rhythms and sleep cycles are naturally regulated by the hypothalamus and regulates pain and sensation. 

Your capacity to tolerate pain is impacted by hypothalamus disturbances that occur while you sleep. 

Because of this, you might not have experienced pain while you slept, but you might in the morning.

Although there are many different potential causes for waking up with a headache, sleep disorders frequently result in morning head pain.

1) Sleep Apnea 

People who have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) have interrupted or stopped breathing while they are asleep. 

Sleep apnea causes frequent pauses and starts in breathing while you sleep, which lowers your oxygen levels. 

It may give you headaches in the morning.

Adults with OSA make up 2% to 10% of the population.

Morning headaches are a typical sign of OSA. 

29% of OSA sufferers in one study who participated in it said they experienced morning headaches.

Using a CPAP machine to treat your sleep apnea may help you experience fewer or no morning headaches.

2) Insomnia

Your sleep patterns may be impacted by insomnia, which can result in sleep deprivation. 

Morning headaches are frequently brought on by lack of sleep, which can also bring on migraines.

People who have this sleep disorder have difficulty getting to sleep or staying asleep. 

Since they frequently don’t get enough sleep, they might experience daytime sleepiness or drowsiness.

The connection between headaches and sleep is complex. 

Headaches can result from or be the cause of getting little or no sleep.

3) Disordered Circadian Rhythms

Morning headaches are more common in people with circadian rhythm disorders than in people with normal sleep patterns. 

When your body is out of sync with the typical sleep-wake rhythms in a 24-hour cycle, you can develop circadian rhythm disorders. 

The lack of sleep you may experience as a result of this misalignment may awaken you with a headache.

4) Hangovers

Morning headaches are strongly associated with binge drinking, defined as consuming at least six drinks in one evening. 

However, even at lower doses, alcohol interferes with sleep and can cause headaches in the morning for a variety of reasons. 

Alcohol consumption can make it easier to fall asleep, but it also makes it more likely that your sleep will be interrupted and that you’ll wake up earlier than usual. 

In addition to increasing urination and fluid loss, alcohol also causes mild dehydration. 

Dehydration often causes headaches as a side effect. Additionally, migraines can be triggered by alcohol.

5) Migraine

Morning is a common time for migraines, which are moderate to severe recurrent headaches. 

Migraines frequently start as headaches and progress to more intense pain. 

Migraines are more prevalent in women and those who have sleep disorders. 

In fact, those who suffer from migraines are much more likely to struggle with getting enough sleep, and repeated sleep loss can cause migraines. 

Elderly patients who develop headaches suddenly should be checked for any underlying malignancy.

6) Medications

Your sleep patterns may be disrupted by medications, which could lead to morning headaches. 

If you believe your medications are the source of your morning headaches, consult your doctor.

Some headache medications have the potential to disrupt sleep. 

For instance, it is very common that taking beta blockers can sometimes result in nightmares and vivid dreams.

Additionally, some medications, including benzodiazepines used to treat sleep disorders, can cause or aggravate headaches.

MOH, or medication overuse headache, is another possibility. 

You run the risk of making your headaches worse if you take painkillers too frequently to ease the pain of a headache.

Additionally, it’s possible that your occasional headaches progress to chronic ones. 

OTC or prescription painkillers both carry the risk of this happening.

On the other hand, a morning headache can result from overnight drug withdrawal.

7) Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorders

Your jaw may be the cause of headaches, which frequently occur in the morning. 

One of the most frequently reported symptoms of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder is a headache. 

TMJ headache is the name of the condition.

TMJ disorders (TMJD) can result in headaches, jaw pain, stiffness, and a clicking sound. 

These disorders are brought on by TMJ dysfunction, although the exact cause is unknown. 

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects your jaw to your skull.

Your symptoms may occasionally be relieved by simply resting your TMJ. 

The following additional therapies are frequently used as

Eating soft food and staying away from sticky or hard foods

The least amount of jaw movement possible

Reducing stress

Exercise routines for stretching the jaw

8) Snoring

Not all snorers experience sleep apnea. However, many morning headaches may be brought on by snoring alone. 

In one study with 268 frequent snorers, 23% frequently experienced headaches upon waking early in the day. 

The likelihood of a morning headache increased among this group if one had a history of migraines, insomnia, or psychological distress.

9) Oversleeping

Your morning headaches may also be affected by oversleeping or excessive sleep. 

When you wake up, your headaches will likely be more severe if you slept for a longer period of time or of lower quality. 

An oversleeping headache may result from getting too much sleep.

10) Dental Issues

You may awaken with a headache if you experience sleep bruxism, or teeth grinding or clenching while you are asleep. 

A jaw that is not properly aligned, stress and anxiety, interrupted sleep, alcohol use, and coffee use are all causes of sleep bruxism. 

This forceful and excessive movement also causes tooth wear, muscle pain, and gum damage.

Your dentist can determine if you brux during the night. 

A mouthguard is frequently worn at night as part of treatment. 

In addition, your dentist might suggest cognitive behavioral therapy to help you deal with stress and anxiety and write prescriptions for medications to treat your pain.

11) Strained Muscles

Muscle tension headaches can result from clenching your jaw while you sleep or tensing your neck and shoulders as a result of stress and tension. 

The way you position yourself while sleeping can cause tension, which could result in restless sleep and headaches. 

This stress can be reduced by selecting a pillow that is supportive or by switching up your sleeping position.

12) Anxiety

According to research, mood disorders and migraine attacks frequently co-occur, and those who experience one are more likely to experience the other.

For instance, a person is more likely to have mood disorders if they experience migraines more frequently, and vice versa.

According to the study, those who experience migraines are 2 to 5 times more likely to have anxiety disorders and 2 to 5 times more likely to experience depression than those who don’t.

Along with increasing your risk of morning headaches, mental health issues can cause insomnia.

13) Sinus Congestion

Headaches caused by the sinuses can result from allergies or sinus congestion, and they may be worse in the morning after a night of overnight mucus accumulation.

 

Advice for Relieving

Consult your healthcare provider about the potential causes of your frequent or daily morning headaches. 

To track your symptoms and sleeping patterns, think about keeping a sleep diary, which you can then show to your doctor. 

They can assist you in developing a treatment strategy and pinpointing the precise trigger or triggers of your morning headaches.

1) Maintain a consistent sleep schedule, go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. 

In addition to treatment tailored to your trigger, you can also improve your sleep hygiene.

2) Aim to work out at least a few hours before bedtime. If you work out too soon before bed, you might stay up later.

3) Limit your intake of alcohol and caffeine because they can keep you up late or interfere with your sleep. 

Avoid drinking coffee in the afternoon or alcohol right before bed.

4) You should modify your sleeping environment to create a quiet, cool, and dark environment. Keep your bed solely for sleeping and sex.

5) When you wind down at the end of the day, your body knows it’s time to sleep. 

Make use of a relaxing bath, read, or practice meditation.

6) Ensure you drink enough water throughout the day.

 

Final Words

You might be able to lessen or get rid of your headaches by altering your lifestyle, getting a new pillow, or sleeping more soundly.

Additionally, if your headaches are brought on by an underlying condition, you should talk to your doctor. 

The headaches should go away with the proper treatment once you and your doctor identify the cause.

 

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