9 strange reasons why I get a headache

A man's head wrapped in aluminum foil so that the face is not visible, only blond hair and two hands holding the head - the portrait is illuminated with multi-colored lights as an illustration of strange reasons of headaches.

The headache often is unusual – what provokes it

The head hurts for many reasons and doctors have an explanation for many of them: because of high/low blood pressure or another disease, for example sinusitis; from overtiring; when the weather changes; because of prolonged staring; premenstrual syndrome; in the first months of pregnancy; after sex; during prolonged use of contraceptive drugs; with a hangover. But often headaches appear for unusual reasons, and sometimes for no reason at all.

1. Headache for no reason

This is the so-called “cluster” – an acute headache that occurs on the side of the head or face. It comes and goes suddenly and may not manifest itself for a long time, but scientists have not yet discovered what causes this phenomenon.

A man in a sports outfit sits on the ground on a tree-lined terrace over water, holding his forehead with one hand and his glasses with the other, surrounded by tall buildings and a woman looking at him.
Photo: Unsplash

2. Various scents

It is provoked by various scents: particularly sharp and strong perfume or air freshener, the smell of cooking, of certain types of food, for example onions, the suffocating smell of cigarette smoke.

Perfume bottle surrounded by pale yellow flowers.
Photo: Unsplash

3. Smoking

Smoking leads to many health problems, including headaches, most often the so-called “tension” where we feel as if our head is held in a vise.

A lit cigarette placed on a railing.
Photo: Unsplash

4. Living in the fresh air

It is incredible, but it turns out that even healthy practices such as living in the fresh air in nature can lead to headaches – tension or migraine-type, when the pain “pulsates” behind the eyes. This conclusion is reached by several scientific studies in different countries that focus on women living in rural and urban areas. Female residents of homes in nature complained of headaches more often than female residents of the city.

A man in a white shirt and blue jeans sits on a forest stump among trees, holding his head in his hand.
Photo: Unsplash

5. A question of (self)suggestion

A placebo experiment proves it. 40% of people who were given a medicine containing glucose, but accompanied by the statement that it was likely to give them a headache, confirmed the occurrence of a headache after taking the pill.

Blonde woman wearing black and white winter sweater sitting on stairs with disheveled hair holding her head with one hand.
Photo: Unsplash

6. The change of seasons

The change of seasons and electromagnetic natural waves can cause headaches, American scientists find and explain that the presence of electromagnetic waves and the increase of ozone in the atmosphere provoke migraines. It is important to know that dirty urban smog can contain a high concentration of this gas.

Seven leaves of a tree strung side by side, their colors flowing from green, yellow green, yellow, yellow orange, orange and red.
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7. Chocolate

The caffeine and phenylethylamine in it make it risky. It has been proven that in over 20% of people who complain of chronic headaches, it is caused by regular consumption of chocolate.

Many different square and round chocolates arranged like a mosaic.
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8. Foods with nitrate-based preservatives

E252 is the most famous preservative, it contains potassium nitrate and causes headaches and a number of other health problems. Try to avoid products with it: smoked and cooked meats, sausages, some types of cheese and canned goods.

A beige shopping bag full of canned goods.
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9. Citrus fruits and blue cheese

The tyramine in them is responsible for the appearance of severe headaches. Among the foods it contains are citrus fruits and some dried fruits, bananas, avocados, olives and “moldy” blue cheese.

Seven lemons arranged on a white surface side by side, two of them cut through the middle.
Photo: Unsplash


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