Do Pillows Cause Headaches?

by Dylan Bowen July 29, 2022 3 min read

Do pillows cause headaches?

Sleeping on the wrong pillow can cause headaches and in this blog, we are going to discuss the reason and the fix for this. However, your pillow might not be the only reason you're waking up with a headache and we will go through all the other possible factors too.

Possible reasons for why you are waking up with a headache?

Sleeping with the wrong pillow- If you didn’t know pillows can cause headaches. Having your head placed in an awkward position throughout the night will cause your neck to strain and your muscles too which consequently causes tension in your head. Also if you are a stomach sleeper who has your head bent to the side during the whole night if you lie on your back with your chin facing downwards then this can also contribute to or be the cause of your headache.

To help fix this problem you want to make sure that your pillow isn’t to think it too thick, you need a nice in-between pillow that is just right. This is because the right pillow will prevent you from getting headaches from pillow pressure or getting a stiff neck. You should purchase a pillow that helps to keep your neck aligned with your spine and sleeping on your side also is beneficial as it will also keep your spine aligned.

Lack of sleep- If you do not get enough sleep then you are sure to be waking up with a headache. When you are running off limited sleep your brain isn’t able to utilise the necessary pathways that are used for healthy thinking. Your brain requires deep levels of sleep to be able to produce adequate dopamine and serotonin, these are the brain's painkillers and happy chemicals.

To fix this you will simply need to create a regular bedtime routine that includes calming activities.

Teeth grinding- If you are waking up with a stiff jaw then you probably grind your teeth whilst you are sleeping. A lot of people clench and grind their teeth whilst they sleep without even knowing. If you are waking up with tension headaches then that can be a sign of teeth grinding, the other signs are aching temples and pain in the jaw. Stress can be the cause of teeth grinding so make sure you take the necessary time to unwind after bed.

To fix this issue you must first consult with your dentist to in-fact confirm that you are a teeth grinder. Once that is confirmed your dentist may offer you recommendations such as a night guard to prevent you from grinding your teeth whilst you sleep.

Dehydration- Waking up with a headache can also be a sign of dehydration, dehydration can also cause headaches in the front, back and side of your head. This can be caused by alcohol such as having a hangover or if you are someone who sweats a lot whilst they sleep or even if your not drinking enough water you will feel the consequences in a headache the next morning.

The fix is simple you need to drink more water. Majority of people drink four to six glasses of water a day to maintain their hydration levels. Though, you might want to avoid drinking loads of water before bed unless you don’t mind the constant toilet trips, you can drink water a few hours before bed and it will make all the difference.

Dylan Bowen
Dylan Bowen


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