Headache

17 January 2005

Warm weather can trigger migraines

Most people welcome warmer weather, but headache sufferers sometimes find that rising temperatures can trigger headaches or debilitating migraines.

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Most people welcome warmer weather, but headache sufferers sometimes find that rising temperatures can trigger headaches or debilitating migraines.

The reason is still a mystery, although researchers in Canada documented the phenomenon last year. The science journal Nature reports that warm spring winds increased the number of headaches in almost half the 75 migraine sufferers who were studied. The elderly were particularly affected.

There are a number of dietary triggers for migraines including: alcohol (especially red wine), foods with monosodium glutamate (MSG), foods that contain tyramine (such as aged cheeses) and preserved meats with nitrates and nitrites.

Too much or too little sleep can trigger a migraine attack as well as emotional stress or response to life's daily pressure.

Here are some tips for preventing headaches and migraines associated with exercising in warm weather:

  • Warm up adequately before exercise
  • Maintain hydration throughout activity and after
  • Consult your health-care provider about your exercise regimen

Read more:
Paracetamol
Holiday hangover remedies
MSG does not cause headaches

 

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Headache expert

Dr Elliot Shevel is a South African migraine surgery pioneer and the founder and medical director of The Headache Clinic in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town, South Africa. The Headache Clinic is a multidisciplinary practice dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of Primary Headaches and Migraines. Dr Shevel is also the main author of all scientific publications generated by his team. He recently won a high level science debate in which he was able to prove that the current migraine diagnosis and classification is not based on data. Tertiary Education - Dr Shevel holds both Dental and Medical degrees, and practises as a specialist Maxillo-facial and Oral Surgeon. Follow the Headache Clinic on Twitter@HeadacheClinic . Read the Headache Clinic's latest article on headaches during the holidays.

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