Have you ever faced a headache, as severe as if someone is banging your head fiercely from the inside? And, this pain occurs very often when the summer season approaches. If you said yes, then this can be an inclination towards summer migraine.  

Migraine, in general, gets triggered because of multiple extrinsic factors like exposure to pollution, specific fragrances, loud noise, specific food allergens, etc., or even intrinsic stimuli like stress, anxiety, improper sleep, starvation, hormonal changes, poor posture, and more. Another common stimulus leading to migraine is ‘heat’, making summer migraine more prevalent in tropical countries.

Summer migraine is usually accompanied by the pounding headache that one may experience around the temples or in the back head area when exposed to a scorching hot environment. Let us read about summer migraine in detail…

How Does Summer Season Provokes Migraine? 

Here are a few possible reasons that experts explain:

Heat – Several research findings indicate that heat exposure instigates the vulnerability to having a throbbing headache. Hence, there is a likelihood of increased rates of migraine cases in warmer areas.

Brightness – While stepping out during the peak sun hours in summer, one may confront bright sun glares, which may act as an external stimulus to initiate migraine in migraine-prone people.

Dehydration- During hot months of the year, the human body has a tendency to get dehydrated. Dehydration is allied with increased incidences of migraine. Scientific studies suggest that dehydration may cause the narrowing of blood vessels because of the loss of body fluids and electrolytes. This may trigger headache as one of the symptoms to indicate that the body is dehydrated. 

Irregular oral food intake- Since people are more prone to poor digestion and stomach sickness in hot weather, precautionary they may eat less, and inadequate oral intake may eventually end up in migraine discomfort.

Erratic sleep cycle- Hot months of the year are generally associated with longer days and shorter nights, which may lead to a succinct sleep cycle. Relatively, insufficient sleep in summer may promote unpleasant summer migraine incidences.

Apart from the above-mentioned reasons, high humidity and sudden dips in the barometric pressure during the summer months could also instigate summer migraine incidences.  

9 Proven Steps To Circumvent ‘Summer Migraine? 

As the weather in the summer grows warmer, the graph for news reports related to heat exhaustion, or heat stroke also rises. We must adopt an ideal lifestyle especially in hot weather, to refrain from heat-induced health issues including summer migraine episodes. Let us have a look at a few simple tips to accomplish that.

Don’t skip your meals – Skipping a meal is absolutely illegitimate especially when you are stepping out in the sun. Take your diet as per your daily routine every day and include more vitamin and protein-rich food options in it to avoid unpleasant migraine headaches later.

Avoid dehydration – Follow a fixed water intake formula and make sure you are adhering to it to avoid any incidence of dehydration. Also, increase your fluid intake by supplementing your diet with water and electrolyte-rich natural fluids.

Avoid excessive use of cosmetics- If you are prone to migraines, choose your cosmetic products wisely. If possible, wear less of them, else try to incorporate fragrance-less cosmetic products. Nevertheless, you must apply sunscreen while stepping out in the sun.

Reschedule your exercise regimen- Avoid doing robust exercise in the peak sun hours. Constraint it to off-peak hours of the day or do it indoors, to abstain from the direct glare of sunlight and heat, both of these are potent stimuli for migraine.

Track your migraine cycle- Decode the frequency and time of occurrence of your migraine incidence. This will assist in unraveling the possible reasons for actuating your migraine incidences.  

Learn to distinguish between migraine pain and heat-induced headache- Heat exhaustion is a common trait associated with summer concerns, and headache may remain one of the symptoms of it. If you are experiencing a headache due to extensive heat –exposure, be cautious, as it could be an indication of a heat –stroke, treat it likely, whereas, treating summer migraine could be different.

Keep your AC temperature optimum- Optimize AC temperature in the range of 25 °– 28 ° C, as it maintains an ideal humidity level required for the human body; avoids desiccation in the eyes, and thus eradicates any prospect to experience migraine pains.

Use cold therapy to alleviate pain- Apply cold compresses to lessen the throbbing headaches. Ice packs could be quite effective as they are known to bring a comforting effect during unbearable migraine pains. 

Abide by your regular sleep cycles - Deviating from our regular sleep schedules significantly affects other metabolic processes accompanying hormonal levels, and thus could stimulate migraine pains. So, whichever may be the season make sure to stick to your fixed sleep schedule.

As the external temperature elevates, be more vigilant of how your body responds to the weather change. Having awareness of the potential reasons for summer migraine, and overcoming them with appropriate actions will keep you healthier and more energetic. 

If you suffer from headaches or migraines and have queries to ask, then consult our experts to get answers in minutes. Ask now!

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About the Author

Dr. Nidhi Hukku

Dr. Nidhi is a doctorate in Biotechnology with more than 7 years of experience in academic, scientific, and healthcare writing. She has been the recipient of CSIR/UGC JRF and has worked in both the academic and health sector to create content for various online platforms. She is an eminent writer with the potential to leave a dynamic impact on readers with her write-ups. Presently, she is working on the post of senior medical editor.

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