Why Do I Wake Up With A Headache Every Morning?

By Annette GallagherApril 19, 2019No Comments

When you’re a migraine or headache sufferer, waking up with a headache can seem like a cruel twist of fate. While this is never a fun way to start your day, in most instances morning headaches aren’t indicative of a serious issue. Below are some of the most common reasons why you might experience a headache when you wake up every morning and tips on how to cope.

Experiencing migraine headache? Sinus headache? Do you need immediate help and relief?  Find a location near you to get connected with our headache professionals immediately. Search National Headache Institutions

Sinus Headache

Sinus headaches caused by inflamed sinuses often start in the morning and clear up on their own by the afternoon. These sometimes occur when there are drastic changes in temperature such as when the seasons shift. They frequently occur in the morning because while you’re sleeping mucus collects and drains. Days with high pollen count are also culprits. For these headaches breathing in steam can do wonders for relieving the pain and inflammation.

Migraine Headaches


You’ve no doubt heard about the importance of sleep to maintain good health. Chronic insomnia or even just a poor night’s sleep are important factors contributing to morning headaches. Waking up with a headache after a fitful night’s sleep can greatly impact your focus, so be sure to practice good sleep hygiene. Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day. Use your evening hours to wind down by turning off your phone and other electronics. find a relaxing routine that works for you. Getting good sleep will reduce the frequency of morning headaches and improve your morning overall.

Anxiety or Depression

As if dealing with mental health issues such as anxiety and depression weren’t enough, the occurrence of these conditions can lead to headaches. Anxiety spikes your adrenaline, which in turn increases your likelihood of developing a headache. Management of these conditions can help you find headache relief. Consider seeing a doctor or therapist help get these conditions under control. Diet, exercise, and practicing proper relaxation techniques like deep breathing, yoga, and meditation can help lower the incidence of waking up with a headache.

TMJ & Jaw Clenching

You don’t have much control over teeth grinding when you are asleep; however, this issue can lead to increased morning headaches. Grinding your teeth makes your jaw clench and puts your whole head under enormous pressure which in turn leads to a headache. If this is an issue for you, consider a mouth guard and practice stress reduction strategies such as those mentioned above.

Alcohol and Medications

Drinking too much alcohol has many health risks, including a higher incidence of waking up with a headache. If you drink, try to limit the amount and drink a glass of water between each glass. Similarly, some medications can cause a headache. If this is the case, it is best to talk to your doctor about other options. You could consider trying a different medication or working with your doctor on a treatment plan for your headaches. Overusing pain medications, including over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or naproxen, can also cause rebound headaches.

Limit Caffeine

Going without your morning coffee may be hard to fathom, but too much caffeine may lead to morning headaches. If you can’t or don’t want to cut caffeine completely, limit your intake and avoid caffeine in the afternoons or evenings.

Waking Up With a Headache? Manage Sinus and Migraine Headaches with National Headache Institute

Most morning headaches have simple explanations. We have mentioned only a few here. Other conditions can be identified through a thorough history and physical exam performed at our clinic. Rarely, there are serious issues at work such as high blood pressure or other health conditions. Waking up with a headache is an unwelcome start to your day, but there is help available. National Headache Institute offers proven, comprehensive treatment plans to help you manage your headaches. Contact us, today!