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A Headache Disorder Guide for College Students

It’s no secret we live in stressful times. There is never enough time to accomplish everything we want to do, world news is frightening, technology is becoming more complicated, and we are finding it harder to communicate with one another even though we constantly are digitally connected. For a young person in college, these situations can lead to a physical reaction and many times a migraine. Here is a headache disorder guide for college students.

Some Facts About Headaches

Headaches are the most common form of pain, and they are a major cause for people missing work or school. While one person may only have a headache once or twice a year, other people can experience them 15 days or more out of a month.

For some people, they last for weeks at a time, and they can be on a scale from mild to almost disabling and affecting their quality of life. Some individuals may experience symptoms including nausea or increased sensitivity to light, sound, and smells.

Some additional facts about headaches include the following:

  • Certain kinds of headaches run in families.
  • Migraines can affect both children and adults.
  • Women are affected three times more than men.
  • Headache triggers can include things like stress, certain foods, odors, or medications.
  • Too little or too much sleep can make headaches worse.
  • The most common headache college students have is called a tension headache.

You can learn about the 29 types of headaches here.

Managing Headache Disorders for College Students in Tacoma, WA

Headache disorders are characterized by recurrent headaches which are painful and are disabling.

One might conclude that healthy young college students would not suffer from headaches. However, the lifestyle of college students continuingly causes triggers like stress, fatigue, and anxiety. They stress over finals, deal with late nights cramming or partying, and find themselves sitting in front of computers for hours. All this combines to make them highly susceptible to debilitating headaches.

Tips for College Students to Mitigate Headache Disorders

Anything that reduces stress can be helpful. Try to do everything in moderation. That includes studying, drinking, and caffeine. Take breaks while studying and stay hydrated if you are drinking alcohol. Don’t over-imbibe caffeine. Withdrawal from caffeine is a common trigger for headaches.

Get yourself an ergonomic chair. They can be costly, but they are well worth the money. It will reduce neck and back pain which can lead to headaches.

Stay on a regular consistent schedule when it comes to eating and sleeping. This one is important.

Try meditation, yoga, and remember to get regular exercise and proper nutrition.

Many college campuses have accommodations in place for students with headache disorders. Contact Puget Sound Neurology at (253) 284-4488 if you experience frequent headaches that affect your daily life on campus.

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