Breaking Down The Data
A sample of 98 adults with frequent episodic migraines completed electronic diaries each morning and evening every day for six weeks. The total servings of caffeinated coffee, tea, soda and energy drinks consumed were recorded each day, along with twice daily headache reports documenting the onset, duration, intensity and medications used for each migraine since the previous diary entry. Other common migraine triggers that each participant normally experiences was recorded as well.
A self-matched analysis was used to evaluate the linkbetween caffeinated drinks and migraines on the same or following day.Researchers compared each participants occurrence of migraines on days withand without caffeine intake, eliminating the chance of factors such as age,sex, and other behavioral and environmental factors to intrude with data. Thisstrategy also accommodated for various caffeine dosages and serving sizesconsumed by participants.
The end result? For regular caffeine consumers, one to two servings thats 8 oz. of coffee, 6 oz. of tea, 12 oz. of soda, or 2 oz. of energy drink had no effect on migraines on the same or following day. Headaches were more often onset by three or more servings of caffeinated drinks for regular consumers, and one to two servings for those who rarely consume caffeine.
Coffee Can Stop A Headache Or Cause One
Coffee contains caffeine, which is added to some types of headache medications. But you can get too much of a good thing coffee may lead to caffeine rebound or a caffeine withdrawal headache, according to the National Headache Foundation.
A cup of coffee is a quick fix for this type of headache, says Brown. Its important to remember that caffeine can stay in your system for up to five hours, she says. For some people, this may lead to an afternoon headache once their morning cup of coffee wears off, she adds.
If your caffeine consumption is causing withdrawal headaches, you might try cutting down by drinking half caff or decaffeinated coffee, suggests Brown. Even decaf coffee has some caffeine in it, she adds.
What Are The Causes Of A Migraine
Migraines arent the same as other types of headaches. Migraine is a genetic neurological disease in which there is an interplay between the pain neurons in the brain and the blood vessels.
Migraines can be set off by different stimuli, foods, and conditions. These triggers vary from person to person, with the most common including:
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How To Get Rid Of A Migraine Fast With The Chill Method
You aren’t at your best when a Migraine attack hits. The beginning of an attack brings exhaustion, difficulty thinking, and anxiety. It can be tempting to panic and give in to the fear – especially if you don’t have your abortive meds in reach.
Panicking will make only make it worse – I know from experience. Your breathing becomes more shallow when you’re stressed, kicking your nervous system into fight-or-flight mode and depriving your brain of the oxygen it needs.
You don’t have to remember how to get rid of a Migraine fast, just remember to CHILL.
Use Meds In Moderation
Pharmacy shelves are stocked with pain relievers for all kinds of headaches. To get the most benefit with the least risk, follow the directions on the label and these guidelines:
- Choose liquid over pills. Your body absorbs it faster.
- Avoid ibuprofen and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs if you have heart failure or kidney failure.
- Do not give aspirin to a child under age 18.
- Take painkillers as soon as you start to hurt. Youâll probably beat it with a smaller dose than if you wait.
- If you get sick to your stomach when you get a headache, ask your doctor what might help.
- Ask your doctor what to take to avoid a rebound headache, which is pain that sets in after a few days of pain relievers.
And be sure to talk to your doctor about what headache symptoms you should not treat at home.
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How Do I Stop Being Sensitive To Caffeine
To treat caffeine sensitivity, a person should be aware of how caffeine affects their health. For example, people who experience insomnia or anxiety may require sleeping aids or antidepressants. Instead of taking medication to treat the side effects of caffeine, they can reduce their consumption of it.
Does Putting A Glass Of Water On Your Head Help Headaches
Hydration. Dehydration can contribute to a headache, but it can be easily avoided. Grabbing a good old-fashioned glass of water can help as much as an electrolyte-containing beverage such as Pedialyte, Gatorade, or Powerade. But just as there are drinks that can reduce headaches, there are those that can trigger them.
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What Does A Dehydration Headache Feel Like
Dehydration headaches can feel different to different people, but they typically have symptoms similar to those of other common headaches. For many people, it may feel like a hangover headache, which is often described as a pulsating ache on both sides of the head thats aggravated by physical activity.
Berries May Relieve Sinus Pressure
Smaller fruits tend to have more exposure to pesticides, and so Brown recommends getting organic berries whenever possible.
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What Should You Avoid
While a 2016 study found that migraine intensity in study subjects decreased after discontinuing the use of caffeine, thereâs no reason to avoid it completely if it does not trigger your own headaches, Dr. Crystal says. In fact, consuming coffee has benefits, too.
âCoffee may help prevent neurological diseases, and a compound found in both caffeinated and decaf coffee may help prevent abnormal protein accumulation found in Alzheimerâs and Parkinsonâs patients,â Dr. Crystal says.
Those who are unsure of how caffeine affects their migraines can keep a food journal or use a migraine tracker app to log potential triggers, as well as monitor how much caffeine is a safe amount for you.
In general, Dr. Crystal suggests limiting your caffeine intake to less than 200mg total per day. Thatâs about two cups of coffee, five cups of soda, or one energy drink.
Why Do You Get Them
It turns out you can have too much of a good thing: Excessive or prolonged use of caffeine could be the culprit for your headache, says Egler. “The dose makes the poison,” he tells . “Almost all substances, even those that are thought to be good for you, can become toxic if overdosed or taken excessively. Caffeine is definitely one of those substances.” Translation? You can literally overdose coffee.
And even if you’re consuming a moderate amount of caffeine, it’s still a diuretic, which makes you urinate a lot. And all those trips to the bathroom can dehydrate you, which Egler says could be a cause of your headaches.
You can also get headaches from not ingesting enough caffeine. If you take caffeine regularly, your body starts to establish a new normal where it relies on the substance to function. The more you take it, the more tolerant your body becomes, which means you might need higher and higher doses of caffeine to achieve the desired effect, according to Egler. And this spells trouble for those days when you can’t get your hands on some coffee. When your body doesn’t get what it needs to function, it can be literally painful to find a new balance that’s why you might get a headache if you don’t pour yourself a cup of tea first thing in the morning, or why your head might frequently hurt if you’re trying to cut back on soda.
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How Do You Get Rid Of One
Unfortunately, theres no magical cure to get rid of a caffeine headache immediately. Treat these like you would another headache, says Patel. Give it time and drink plenty of water to rehydrate. Better yet, stay well-hydrated before and during caffeine consumption to prevent a headache in the first place. And though your impulse may be to take over-the-counter pain medicine to ease your discomfort, Egler recommends holding off. “Two wrongs definitely dont make a right,” he says. Taking pain medicine excessively to quell everyday headaches can lead to its own set of problems, much like caffeine. If you must take something for pain relief regularly, he recommends checking in with your doctor to find the best dose of anti-inflammatory substances like turmeric or magnesium instead.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure Egler says: Sometimes the best way to get rid of a caffeine headache is to limit your dosage or avoid it in the first place. If your headaches result from ingesting too much caffeine, he recommends limiting yourself to one or two cups of your caffeinated beverage of choice, preferably spread out over a few hours. And if youre sensitive to caffeine, take it easy on the coffee or give it up altogether to prevent pain, recommends Patel.
Preventive Medications And Treatments
A wide range of drugs may be prescribed to prevent migraine attacks from forming, and some medical treatments can help. Such approaches are considered especially in cases of chronic migraine, in which you have 15 or more headache episodes a month.
Several types of preventative migraine medications may be prescribed. The most common of these are:
- Tricyclic antidepressants: Elavil and Pamelor
- Beta-blockers: Tenormin and Inderal
- Antiepileptic drugs: Depakote and Topamax
- Calcium channel blockers: Calan
- Calcitonin gene-related monoclonal antibodies: Vyepti and Ajovy
Additionally, in cases in which medications arent yielding results, Botox injections can be considered. In this therapy, doctors target specific areas in your forehead, temples, the sides and back of the head, and the neck. Though the frequency and intensity of migraines are reduced, the effect is temporary, and appointments are needed every three months.
When the condition is associated with the menstrual cycle, hormone replacement therapy may be attempted.
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How To Reduce Caffeine Dependence
The best way to reduce caffeine dependency is gradually, ideally, by cutting down on caffeine intake by around 25% each week.
Coffee, tea, or soda drinkers may find it easier to transition to decaffeinated versions of their favorite beverages. People could also try mixing decaf with caffeinated drinks and gradually increasing the proportion of decaf to caffeinated.
Several other tricks and lifestyle habits can also help people reduce their caffeine dependence, such as:
- replacing caffeinated foods and drinks with caffeine free alternatives
- staying hydrated
How Much Caffeine Is Too Much
The effects of caffeine vary from person to person. Some people can periodically enjoy one or more sources of caffeine, and then skip out on caffeine other days, without experiencing any headaches. Others are more sensitive and susceptible to the effects of withdrawal. Its still possible to develop negative symptoms when quitting caffeine even if you only consumed it for a few days in a row.
If you know that you tend to experience headaches easily and somewhat frequently, experts recommend either avoiding all caffeine or limiting your caffeine intake to one or two beverages daily.
This amount is roughly equivalent to 200 milligrams of caffeine, or about 2 regular-size cups of coffee.
When it comes to coffee consumption specifically, most research suggest that adults consume no more than about 3- to 4 cups a day. This amount is considered a moderate caffeine intake and provides about 300 to 400milligrams a day of caffeine. Other research suggests that more coffee, up to 5 or 6 cups, is even okay as long as it doesnt interfere with quality of life.
Below is a list of the most common sources of caffeine that can wind up contributing to withdrawal effects, according to the National Headache Foundation:
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Dr William B Young Advises:
That’s a question with a complicated answer. The key to whether caffeine is harmful or beneficial depends on how much you ingest.
We know that caffeine can help migraines. Some people find that a cup of coffee or tea helps relieve an occasional or . Caffeine is also used as an ingredient in many commonly used prescription and over-the-counter headache medications.
However, caffeine can also cause headaches. An important study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine about ten years ago, found that people who drank more than one cup of coffee a day were at risk for getting a withdrawal headache if they went without it. This is why people who drink coffee at work on weekdays may develop headaches on the weekends
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Also, people who get occasional headaches or migraines and drink more than two cups per day of caffeinated beverages -or who take a lot of medication that contains caffeine – are at risk for developing daily headaches. If you fall into this group, you should gradually cut down on your caffeine intake until it is eliminated. Then you usually will go back to getting only occasional headaches. But you must cut down on the caffeine very gradually or your headaches may worsen.
Stimulate Those Pressure Points
Acupressure is a type of traditional Chinese medicine in which you apply pressure to certain points on your body. Its been found to sometimes relieve headaches and ease muscle tension.
A 2010 study found that one month of acupressure treatment relieved chronic headaches better than muscle relaxants did.
There are several pressure points that you can try stimulating for headache relief. More study is required to determine whether these actually work. It couldnt hurt to try, right?
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Why Coffee Can Help
Caffeine is the cheapest, easiest, most available drug to treat a migraine. It constricts blood vessels which can decrease pain. If you feel a migraine coming on, try drinking a cup or two of strong black coffee or a caffeinated soft drink, a simple treatment that works for many people.
Caffeine can be so effective that many over-the-counter migraine medications include it as an ingredient, including Anadin Extra.
Caffeine also helps you absorb other medications, which is another reason why it is included in some of these medications. And it is a brain stimulant so it can help you think better if you’re in a migraine fog.
Beneficial: The caffeine in coffee can help migraine sufferers by constricting blood vessels in the brain
Migraine Headaches: Still Mysterious After All These Years
Migraine headaches are quite common: more than a billion people reportedly suffer from migraines worldwide. Yet, the cause has long been a mystery and it still is.
Until recently, the going theory was that blood vessels around the brain go into spasm, temporarily constricting and limiting blood flow. Then, when the blood vessels open up, the rush of incoming blood flow leads to the actual headache.
That theory has fallen out of favor. Now, the thinking is that migraines are due to waves of electrical activity spreading across the outer portions of the brain, leading to inflammation and overreactive nerve cells that send inappropriate pain signals. Why this begins in the first place is unknown.
Migraines tend to run in families, so genetic factors are likely important. In addition, chemical messengers within the brain, such as serotonin, may also play a central role in the development of migraines, though the mechanisms remain uncertain.
People prone to migraines may experience more headaches after coffee consumption , but coffee itself, or the caffeine it contains, is not considered the actual cause of migraines. Certain foods or drinks like coffee are thought to trigger episodes of migraine, but the true cause is not known.
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Tips For Instant Migraine Relief
The next time you find your brain scrambling to think straight, just remember to CHILL. This acronym makes it easy to remember proven ways to get rid a Migraine:
- Lights Off.
These 5 tips for instant Migraine relief give you the best chance for keeping that baby Migraine attack from turning into a roaring beast.
Order is not as important as speed – the faster you act to reduce your controllable triggers and symptoms, the better chance you’ll have of intercepting a full-blown Migraine attack before it starts.
A New Study About Coffee And Migraines: How Much Is Too Much
In a new study published in the American Journal of Medicine, researchers asked 98 people with migraines to keep a diet diary that included how often they consumed caffeinated beverages . This information was compared with how often they had migraines. Heres what they found:
- The odds of having a migraine increased for those drinking three or more caffeinated beverages per day, but not for those consuming one to two servings per day the effect lasted through the day after caffeine consumption.
- It seemed to take less caffeine to trigger a headache in those who didnt usually have much of it. Just one or two servings increased the risk of migraine in those who usually had less than one serving per day.
- The link between caffeine consumption and migraine held up even after accounting for other relevant factors such as alcohol consumption, sleep, and physical activity.
Interestingly, the link was observed regardless of whether the study subject believed that caffeine triggered their headaches.
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