Caffeine withdrawals can cause some of the worst headaches imaginable. Shockingly, caffeine withdrawal is not exclusive to those who consume high amounts daily. John Hopkins University has found that drinking one cup of coffee per day – with around 100mg of caffeine – can cause dependency, and therefore withdrawal symptoms.
Caffeine is a stimulant that has many effects on our bodies. Once consumed, caffeine narrows blood vessels in the brain. Because of the habitual use of caffeine, the blood vessels remain narrow, and when they widen due to a lack of caffeine, the excessive blood flow triggers a headache.
Don’t rush to your doctor asking for a prescription pain killer, that would certainly be overkill. Rather head to your local pharmacy and ask for an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as aspirin or ibuprofen.
These pills can be taken throughout the day, usually once every six hours. The dosage you will take will depend on the medication’s strength and type.
You should also consider getting a painkiller that contains small amounts of caffeine, which will help your body absorb the medication faster, and makes it more effective. However, this may prolong the side effects, as your body will still be somewhat dependent on caffeine.
Make sure to go cold-turkey on the caffeine if you take pain killers, as many pain killers can trigger side effects of their one, including headaches!
Increasing the amount of water, you drink can reduce the chances of headaches. Caffeine can increase the rate of urination, which means that you’ll be losing more fluids in your body.
Dehydration causes the brain to shrink inn volume, moving away from the skull. This can trigger pain receptors in the membranes surrounding the brain, which results in a headache.
Everyone will require different amounts of water per day, depending on what job you work and what climate you live in. A good guideline is to consume at least 2l of water per day!
Research has suggested that topical menthol may help relieve headaches and help relax tight muscles. Some studies even suggest that it can be as effective as acetaminophen!
Try rub a few drops of peppermint essential oil into your forehead and temples.
While coffee withdrawal headaches are certainly painful, they are also avoidable and treatable. These are some of the best ways to treat a caffeine withdrawal headache.