March 07, 2020

Can Allergies Cause Headaches?

Allergy Headaches

The answer to the question, “Do allergies cause headaches?” is “Yes, they do.”  Allergy headaches are exactly what the name implies: headaches caused by allergies. Sinus headaches and migraines are two types of headaches associated with allergies. This article explains what causes allergy headaches, how to prevent them and how to treat allergy headaches if they occur.

Allergic Rhinitis

One common cause of allergy headaches is allergic rhinitis. Also known as hay fever, this type of seasonal allergy can produce headaches in some people.

What Does an Allergy Headache Feel Like?

What does a headache caused by allergies feel like? Typically, this type of headache produces two types of pain. The first is pain centered in the sinus area. This type of allergy headache may also cause facial pain. The second type of pain is experienced on one side of the head and may be accompanied by nausea. Exposure to sunlight may worsen this migraine-type headache.

What Allergies Cause a Headache?

In addition to allergic rhinitis, mentioned above, other types of allergies can cause allergy headaches. For example, food allergies and allergies to smoke or other toxins can trigger a headache. Other factors like stress and nasal or sinus congestion can cause an allergy headache as well.

How Can I Treat and Prevent Allergy Headaches?

The best way to prevent allergy headaches is to identify the things you’re allergic to and avoid them as much as possible. For example, if you’re allergic to pollen, you should stay inside when pollen counts are at their highest, which is typically in the midmorning and early evening. You should also wear glasses or sunglasses when outside, as allowing pollen to get into your eyes can cause your sinuses to become inflamed and trigger an allergy headache.

In addition, you should clean up after coming into contact with allergens. If you’re allergic to dogs or cats, for instance, you should wash your hands after touching them and change your clothes if you’ve held them close to your body.

Allergy treatments that can help prevent allergy headaches include allergy shots (what’s called immunotherapy) and over-the-counter medications such as antihistamines, decongestants, and pain relievers.

Suffer from allergy headaches?

Make an appointment to talk with a doctor at Baptist Health.

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