Does Dehydration Cause Headaches
If you or a family member are experiencing a headache after spending time outdoors or being too busy to remember to drink liquids throughout the day, you may be wondering whether or not youre dehydrated to the point that you need to search for an ER near me for pain control. If so, the following information will be useful to answer your question and provide some tips for future hydration management to avoid emergency care in Abilene.
Causes Of Dehydration Headaches
Dehydration can happen easily and for simple reasons. If you forget to drink enough water on a hot day, while exercising or during a hike, you could end up dehydrated. In some places, there may be no access to safe drinking water which can exacerbate the situation.
Other times, dehydration can occur because youre sick. Even a relatively mild cold or sore throat can make you more susceptible to dehydration if you dont feel like eating or drinking. Being sick with a fever can also worsen a situation where you are losing fluids and electrolytes through diarrhea and vomiting.
We lose fluid and electrolytes through four main ways:
- Diarrhea: When you are sick and have severe acute diarrhea, this can cause a huge loss of water and electrolytes in a short amount of time.
- Vomiting: Being sick and vomiting is also a way to lose fluid and electrolytes.
- Sweating: When you are very active or are outside in hot weather, you sweat more and in turn lose more fluid. If the weather is humid, sweat cant evaporate and cool you as quickly as normal, which causes your body to heat up and need even more fluids.
- Urinating: Some conditions, such as undiagnosed or uncontrolled diabetes, can cause you to urinate more than normal. Similarly, certain medications, such as diuretics and some blood pressure medications, can also cause increased urination.
This loss of fluids and electrolytes can result in a dehydration headache.
What Are The Signs Of Dehydration
Dehydration in one person won’t look the same as in another, and it can be from mild to severe. It all depends on how much of your body weight has been lost through the water. There are two undeniable and early signs of dehydration , and that’s the triggering of thirst and your urine darkening in color. Your body does this to try and increase your water intake while at the same time, trying to slow down the loss of water.
There are other symptoms of dehydration that you need to be aware of if you hope to catch those symptoms as they happen. These include:
- Headaches that start lightly and build
- Muscle cramps
- Loss of strength or stamina
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First All Know Who The Real Enemy Is
Were looking at you, added sugar. Sugar is a carbohydrateyour bodys main source of energythat occurs naturally in many foods that are part of a healthy diet, including fruit, vegetables, milk and whole grains. Added sugar generally refers to sugar thats added when foods or beverages are processed or packaged, such as sugar from syrups, honey and concentrated fruit or vegetable juices. It also refers to sugar that you add yourself, like what you sprinkle on your oatmeal or into your morning coffee.
The problem with added sugar is that it adds calories without providing any essential nutritive value. The American Heart Association recommends that women consume no more than 100 calories per day from added sugar . Thats about 25 grams or 6 teaspoons. Keep in mind, one 12-oz can of cola contains nearly 40 grams of added sugar!
While Hensrud doesnt quite view sugar as addictive, he believes it exhibits some of the traits and it can become a habit. So part of cutting down on sugar is breaking the habit. He suggests easing into the process by cutting down on any added sugar or using healthier sugars like pureed fruit. As for sugar substitutes, there really isnt a free pass. Some of the substitutes might trick the brain into consuming more sugar at other times.
Signs You Are Experiencing A Dehydration Headache
“I love headaches!” – said no one ever. If you’ve experienced a headache, which chances are you have seeing nearly 2 out of 3 children will have had one at least once by age 15, then you know they are a pain – literally. In fact, headaches are one of the most common causes of pain and reasons for missed days of work.
There are many different reasons why people get headaches, but one of the most common reasons is simply due to a lack of H2O. It’s true, when people don’t drink enough water, they can get a dehydration headache – but what exactly is it, and what are the signs?
Keep reading to find out!
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When To See A Doctor
If your dehydration is severe, you cant keep fluids down, or your headache does not subside, home remedies may not be enough and you will need to seek medical help.
You or your companions will know your dehydration is severe if you are experiencing further symptoms, such as:
- Lack of sweating
- Shriveled skin
These symptoms can lead to serious complications.
You should also talk to a doctor if you have dehydration headaches occurring more than occasionally, just to rule out other underlying causes.
Take The Medication Recommended By Your Doctor
The best medication varies between migraine patients and may be either over-the-counter or prescription. As soon as you notice your early migraine symptoms, such as yawning or irritability, take your medication. This can prevent the onset of the migraine attack, or minimize the attacks intensity or length.
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Treating And Preventing A Headache From Water Loss
Claudia Chaves, MD, is board-certified in cerebrovascular disease and neurology with a subspecialty certification in vascular neurology. She is an associate professor of neurology at Tufts Medical School and medical director of the Lahey Clinic Multiple Sclerosis Center in Lexington, Massachusetts.
While most of us know the adage about drinking six to eight glasses of water each day, the truth of the matter is that many of us dont follow through on it.
Dehydration can sneak up on you quite quickly. In fact, by the time you’re thirsty, you may already be dehydrated, which can lead to a host of ailments, including headaches.
Drinks That Can Cause Dehydration
Water is regarded as the best drink to ensure good hydration. Other drinks, such as alcohol and coffee, are diuretics, which means that they can dehydrate you rather than hydrate.
Coffee and other caffeinated drinks have been linked as a trigger for headaches and migraines. If you are a regular coffee or tea drinker, its best to cut down on your caffeine consumption slowly, as abruptly cutting out caffeine altogether may also lead to headaches.
Alcohol is a diuretic, which means that it actually removes fluids from the body and drinking too much can lead to dehydration. This is what causes many of the symptoms we associate with a hangover. If you decide to drink the best thing to do is limit how much alcohol you consume, alternate with non-alcoholic drinks and drink plenty of water the next day to rehydrate your body.
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How Electrolytes Contribute To Dehydration
The body needs to keep electrolytes like magnesium and sodium in just the right ratios. If this delicate balance gets disrupted it can cause complications like fatigue, headaches and more.
What are electrolytes exactly? Theyre compounds that conduct electricity in a solution. More importantly, your cells use them to communicate with each other, produce energy and support the organs. For example, electrolytes moderate pH balance and regulate heart rhythms. But when youre dehydrated, critical electrolytes like potassium, sodium and chloride can get thrown out of whack. Ultimately, this can trigger muscle cramps, lethargy and headaches to the high heavens. Lord have mercy!
Heres a quick overview of the roles that certain electrolytes play in hydration:
- Sodium: helps maintain fluid balance and supports muscle contractions and nerve signaling
- Chloride: maintains fluid balance
- Calcium: helps with muscle contractions, cell division, blood clotting and nerve signaling
- Potassium: regulates blood pressure, heart contractions and muscle functions
- Magnesium: maintains heart rhythms, muscle contractions, bone-building, digestion, and reduces anxiety
Now lets take a closer look at what can happen when electrolytes run amuck and dehydration sets inâ¦
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Defining The Dehydration Headache
A dehydration headache is considered a secondary headache the head pain is caused secondarily to the dehydration. Dehydration is caused by the lack of fluid in the body. Dehydration headaches can be mild, or they can be as severe and painful as a migraine.
The pain is caused when the brain shrinks away from the skull due to the lack of water or fluid loss. The contraction is temporary, and the brain returns to normal after rehydration.
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Dehydration And Headaches Risk Factors
If you experience a dehydration headache, it is because your body has lost too much fluid.2 Some common risk factors for dehydration are:
- Not drinking enough water, or eating enough food
- Excess sweating due to increased exercise or heat
- Vomiting, diarrhea or fever
Since roughly two-thirds of the adult human body is made up of water, its easy to see why losing fluids may hamper bodily functions.3 But there are certain people in the population who may be at greater risk of dehydration and dehydration headaches, including infants and children, the elderly and people with a chronic illness.4
Edible Ways To Stay Hydrated
Some foods can be hydrating as well and offer an alternative way to acquire some hydration. A personal favorite of mine is cold watermelon. Another water-rich melon is cantaloupe. A fruit that may surprise you is strawberries. There are also many vegetables that have high water content as well. These vegetables include cucumbers, zucchini, celery, and lettuce. Some of the vegetables could easily be a quick snack in case you are on the go or dealing with migraine pains.
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How To Get Rid Of Migraines Quickly: 5 Tips From A Neurologist
Migraines can cause severe pain and discomfort, and its hard to find ways to manage symptoms during a migraine attack. While not all migraines can be prevented or completely stopped, it is possible to find relief with the right methods.
As a neurologist, Dr. Maria DeCastro specializes in helping patients manage migraines and find ways to reduce pain and prevent future attacks. In this blog, Dr. DeCastro explains what patients should know about migraines and shares tips for quickly relieving pain and discomfort.
Common Signs And Symptoms Of Dehydration
Theres a lot more to dehydration than just feeling thirsty. Common signs and symptoms of dehydration can include:
- Difficulty concentrating
When ish really hits the fan you may also experience fainting, blurry vision, loss of balance, kidney damage, heart problems and even seizures. Yikes! Electrolyte imbalances may also contribute to diarrhea, constipation and cramping.
Fortunately, theres plenty you can do to cure dehydration headaches once and for all…
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Migraines Dehydration And Staying Hydrated
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Staying hydrated is important for everybody. Although hydration has extra importance for those who suffer from migraines. On one hand, dehydration can trigger migraines in some individuals. On the other hand, a migraine can cause individuals to become dehydrated. There are many ways for individuals to stay hydrated beside simply drinking a glass of water.
Tips To Get Rid Of A Dehydration Headache
A dehydration headache can have similar symptoms to those of other common headaches. It could cause a severe headache on one side of the head, nausea, thirst, dry or sticky mouth, muscle cramps, and more. However, the purpose of treating a dehydration headache remains the same addressing both the pain and the dehydration.
The treatment required for a dehydration headache remains straightforward. However, some preventive tips can help you avoid it altogether.
So, here are a few tips for you to get rid of a dehydration headache.
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The Link Between Migraine Headache And Diarrhea
Diarrhea isnt a common symptom of migraine, but when it happens, it can put you at risk of dehydration.
If you experience diarrhea as a symptom of migraine, the abdominal cramps and dehydration that may result can make your throbbing head pain even more unbearable. Frequent trips to the bathroom can also make escaping to a dark room or sleeping off pain impossible for those unfortunate people who have diarrhea along with their headaches.
There may be ways to manage your medications and the foods you eat to help ease your symptoms and even shorten your . Here are some answers to common questions about diarrhea and migraine.
Dehydration Headache Location What Does A Dehydration Headache Feel Like
Because headaches are a common symptom of many different conditions, it can sometimes be difficult to figure out whether the pain in your head is being caused by dehydration or by something else. Pinpointing the location of your headache pain may offer some clues.
Dehydration headaches may cause pain on all sides of your head, while a migraine may only cause intense pain on one side of the head and will often be accompanied by symptoms of nausea, vomiting, or light and sound sensitivity.5 Dehydration headaches will also feel different from a sinus headache, as dehydration headaches do not cause pressure or pain in the face, while sinus pressure headaches do.6
Another simple way to identify a dehydration headache is to check for other common dehydration symptoms. If you suspect that you have a dehydration headache, you will likely also experience some or all of these symptoms in addition to your headache:2
- Increased thirst
- Dark yellow-colored urine or decreased urination
- Fatigue or lethargy
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Is Diarrhea Common With Migraine Attacks
Diarrhea isnt a common symptom of migraine, but it definitely occurs, says Roderick Spears, MD, a neurologist and at Penn Medicine in Philadelphia. A smaller percentage of people will say they have diarrhea as a compared to vomiting, he says.
Unlike diarrhea, nausea and vomiting are both symptoms listed in the International Headache Society Classification ICHD-3 for migraine.
Diarrhea can occur as a symptom of any type of migraine its not related to one specific type, says Dr. Spears.
Watermelon Provides Fluids To Keep You Hydrated
Interesting fact: Watermelon is actually considered a vegetable because of the way its grown, although some people would argue it belongs firmly in the fruit category because of its sweet flavor and higher sugar content.
Watermelon also has a lot of water in it. Its actually 92 percent water, according to the National Watermelon Promotion Board. Getting plenty of water both by drinking it and by consuming foods that contain lots of water will help you stay hydrated.
Getting enough fluids is important for all aspects of health, including migraine, says Brown. About one in three people with migraine say dehydration is a trigger, according to the American Migraine Foundation.
Many fruits and vegetables can have a hydrating effect, and the fresher it is, the higher the water content, says Brown.
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Goal Setting Is Your Friend
You may have heard about goal setting for your life and your weight loss efforts, but what about when it comes to giving up sugar?
It can be one of the most effective methods of getting you through withdrawals. There are going to be cravings now and then. When you decide to give up certain foods, your brain starts to tell you that you want more of it.
Think of it in a toddlers point of view. When a toddler is told no, thats all they want to do/eat. They will do anything they can to defy you. Our brains just dont like the word no.
So to get around this, you need to give yourself a reason to ignore your brain. Setting a goal or two will help with that. You have something to work towards. When you give in, you know youre taking yourself away from successfully reaching that goal.
Every time you struggle with a craving, its time to revisit your goals. Whats so important about them and why do you want to reach them? This is why having specific and realistic goals are important.
You may have heard that youre on the verge of diabetes and want to reduce the risk of developing it. Your doctor may have told you that the sugar intake has caused your weight to rise, or you may just want to stop putting your organs under so much pressure. Some people are just fed up of the sugar high/crash cycle that comes from eating far too much sugar.
Is Your Headache Caused By Dehydration
Headaches are often thought of occurring as the sign of a larger problem, and in most cases, this is true. Headaches frequently accompany colds, flus, chronic pain, and even food poisoning. However, sometimes headaches occur seemingly at random, but there may actually be a reason dehydration.
Believe it or not, dehydration can cause headaches. Dehydration occurs when we lose more fluids than we put in, and the body doesn’t have enough water and other fluids to carry out its normal functions. Dehydration can occur in any age group, and there are several causes. Diarrhea and vomiting can lead to dehydration, as can increased urination. However, in the hot summer months, a main cause of dehydration is not drinking enough water or fluids to replace the water lost when you sweat. If you do vigorous activity or are simply enjoying our hot summer climate and don’t replace fluids as you go, you can become dehydrated.
A variety of unpleasant symptoms occur when this happens, including headaches. Dehydration headaches may cause pain at the front, back, or on just one side of the head, or the pain may be felt throughout the entire head. Bending the head down or moving it from side to side often worsens the headache. Even simply walking can cause more head pain.