Additional Ways to Treat Your Diabetes Headache
- If you think your headache is due to hyperglycemia and your sugars are over 240 mg/dl, it would be a good idea to call your doctor and check in. You may need some adjustments in your diet or medicines.
- Exercise regularly. Regular exercise not only helps keep your blood sugars in check, but it can help cut down on stress in case that is the underlying factor of your headaches.
- Follow your diet. Following a “diet” can be scary, but I’ll bet your dietician will find a way for you to incorporate your favorite treats now and then, while still minimizing blood sugar fluctuations that cause headaches. The best thing to do to keep diabetic headaches at bay is to follow the proper diabetic diet. Your doctor and/or a dietician can help you determine the best diet for you and what to eat when you're eating out with diabetes.
Having type 2 diabetes can be overwhelming at times and that there can be a lot to remember. Once you have a good plan in place for doing that, you will find that you will have many more diabetes headache-free days.
Reduce Diabetes Headaches by Getting Your Blood Sugars on Track
A great way to reduce the fluctuations from happening in the first place is getting your blood sugars on track.
This means checking your blood sugar levels regularly and taking your insulin as prescribed. Whether you are prescribed just one dose daily (a basal insulin), just mealtime insulin, or both types of insulin, the insulin only works if you are taking it. Often the doses are incorrect if you take the doses sporadically.
For example, if you only take your doses a few days per week, we may continually increase your doses. Then when you take your doses daily, you may require less insulin, causing a low blood sugar level – and the dreaded diabetes headache.
Other Headache Causes
While diabetes itself can cause headaches, there are also many other culprits, and just because you have diabetes and a headache, doesn't mean you have a diabetes headache. Let’s take a look at a few of the other causes of headaches.
Changes in weather have long been known to cause headaches. Whether it’s a drastic temperature change or an oncoming storm, many people swear by the fact that these atmospheric changes cause them headaches.
The “weather headache” is believed to be caused by an imbalance in brain chemicals, particularly serotonin.
Hormones also play a part in headache pain. In females, this is particularly true as estrogen controls chemicals that are responsible for pain sensation in the brain.
A drop in estrogen can trigger a headache. These drops can occur due to menstrual cycles, pregnancy, perimenopause or menopause. Oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapies can play their part in headaches as well.
Lack of Sleep
Not enough sleep can cause an increased expression in the proteins that regulate chronic pain and in the facial nerves that play a role in migraines. Many people that suffer headaches have a hard time sleeping yet that lack of sleep can cause a headache. This catch-22 makes for tough times.
Too much sleep can also cause a headache, so it is suggested to keep a similar sleep pattern, even on the weekends.
Sinus Problems or Allergies
Recent studies show that true sinus headaches are rare and most people that complain of them are getting migraines. As sinus cavities swell, shrink or become inflamed by irritants, they can be the cause of headache pain when there is a bacterial infection in the sinuses.
Allergy headaches are relatively common and usually consist of pain in the front of your head along with pain in the face, ears or teeth. By finding out what the allergy is and treating it, you can help alleviate allergy-related headaches.
It’s a well-known fact that dehydration can cause headaches. Your body is made up of nearly 60 percent water, so staying hydrated is vital to keep it functioning correctly.
It is thought that when your body is lacking in water, it can cause a shrink in brain volume. This then pulls the brain away from the skull triggering pain. Dehydration is also a symptom of diabetic sugar issues, as you will see below.
Stress has long been known to be a cause of headaches. These headaches are usually physically caused by the tightening of muscles in the back of your neck and scalp, teeth clenching, skipping meals, taking certain medications and sleeping/sitting in an awkward position for too long.