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What kinds of sleep problems might trigger a migraine?

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Anything that keeps you from getting 7 or 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night could be a migraine trigger. These sleep problems include:

  • Obstructive sleep apnea (interrupted breathing during sleep)
  • Insomnia (trouble falling or staying asleep)
  • Restless legs syndrome ("pins and needles" feeling in legs, especially at night)
  • Jaw clenching during sleep
  • Snoring
  • Narcolepsy (too much daytime sleepiness)
  • Sleepwalking
  • Circadian rhythm or "body clock" disorders
  • Less than 6 hours of sleep a night or more than 8.5 hours
  • Shift work or jet lag
  • Night terrors (in children)

SOURCES:

Headache : "Headache and Sleep: Examination of Sleep Patterns and Complaints in a Large Clinical Sample of Migraineurs."

The Migraine Trust: "Sleep and migraine."

American Migraine Foundation: "Sleep Disorders and Headache."

National Sleep Foundation: "Sleep Diary."

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on April 2, 2019

SOURCES:

Headache : "Headache and Sleep: Examination of Sleep Patterns and Complaints in a Large Clinical Sample of Migraineurs."

The Migraine Trust: "Sleep and migraine."

American Migraine Foundation: "Sleep Disorders and Headache."

National Sleep Foundation: "Sleep Diary."

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on April 2, 2019

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