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Migraines & Headaches Health Center

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5 Important Lifestyle Changes for Migraines

Don't Sleep In

Too little sleep can trigger a migraine. So can too much.

"It's not necessarily that you're sleeping too much or too little," Newman says. "It's changes in sleep patterns. We want to get 7 to 8 hours every night." You want to get those hours in the same time frame every day. And, you want to wake up and go to bed at the same time. If you usually wake at 7, lounging until 10 on a Saturday could ruin your weekend. You might also end up with a caffeine-withdrawal headache from missing your regular morning Joe.

It's just as important to eat regular meals at the same time every day. When you skip meals, fast, or diet often, you can trigger headaches.

Visit the Dentist

Some headaches, including some migraines, stem from an overworked jaw. For example, the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) hinges your jaw to your skull. You stress it when you grind your teeth at night, clench your jaw during the day, or chew too much gum. These migraines typically show up in the morning.

During the day, you can relieve them by doing jaw-stretching exercises, taking smaller bites, and sucking on mints instead of chewing gum.

When it comes to sleep, that’s a different matter. This may require a visit to the dentist, who can fit you with a night guard.

Stress-relief techniques can help, as well.

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Reviewed on December 22, 2015

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