Is there anything worse than feeling a headache come on? A pounding headache is an annoyance at best. But at its worst, headaches can completely interrupt your daily life with extreme light sensitivity, nausea, fatigue or dizziness.
The good news: there are plenty of ways to prevent headaches before they crop up. Here’s how to avoid getting sidelined by head pain.
Sleep deprivation is a major factor in headaches. Low levels of melatonin, the hormone that helps people fall asleep, is linked to migraines and cluster headaches.
To combat this, shoot for around eight hours of sleep every night. Don’t waste time staying up on your phone, either — the blue light actually suppresses melatonin, making you more prone to headaches. Try turning off your device around 30 minutes before you head in.
Dehydration causes headaches when the tissues in your brain contract due to a lack of water, pull away from your skull, and put pressure on your nerves.
Drinking at least half of your body weight in ounces of water per day keeps your brain cells hydrated. Plus, adding electrolytes gives your cells an additional hydrating boost.
3. Stress Management
Excess stress triggers a fight-or-flight reaction in your brain caused by an adrenaline hormone called epinephrine. This hormone increases your blood pressure and causes inflammation, which the brain processes as coming from itself. That’s why there’s a pounding in your head when you’re completely overwhelmed.
You can’t always remove yourself from a stressful situation. But, there are ways to manage. Regular exercise, yoga, mindful meditation and deep breathing, even for just short periods of time, work wonders. Taking up a hobby can even give you an outlet away from stressful situations.
Bad posture can cause tension in your upper back, neck, and shoulders, leading to a headache.
If you’re slouched at a computer for most of the day, try bringing your computer up to eye level, preferably with a standing desk. Move your shoulders down and back while working, and try to move around throughout the day if possible.
Total-body pliability is key for all-around headache prevention. On the deep-tissue front, maintaining pliable pecs, middle traps, upper traps, and suboccipital muscles help prevent rounded shoulders and tension at the base of your skull.
But additionally, by coupling this deep-tissue work with inflammation reduction, hydrating, and sleeping right, pliability can help reduce your susceptibility to most kinds of headaches.
The Bottom Line
Headaches suck. But they aren’t unmanageable. Hydrate, sleep right, manage your stress, sit up straight, and focus on pliability.
Keep it simple. Your brain will thank you.
To learn more about how pliability can regulate your body, check out the TB12 Explained guide.