Washing hair can give you a headache | HT Tech

Washing hair can give you a headache

The world over, headaches are as common as the common cold. But there is one type of headache only Indians suffer from: a 'hair wash' migraine, reports Sanchita Sharma.

By: SANCHITA SHARMA
| Updated on: Apr 23 2007, 02:22 IST

The world over, headaches are as common as the common cold. But there is one type of headache only Indians suffer from: a "hair wash" migraine. Hair washing is a common trigger for migraines among Indian women, reports Mumbai-based neurologist Dr K Ravishankar in Cephalalgia, the Journal of the International Headache Society.

Hair wash migraine — described as headaches that start after a 'head bath' — is India's unique contribution to medical literature on migraine triggers. "Long hair washed two to three times a week and plaited while wet causes a gradual build up of pain that can lead to a migraine," says Ravishankar, who heads the headache and migraine clinics at Jaslok and Lilavati hospitals respectively. Blow-drying one's hair after washing it lowers the risk of this type of migraine.

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Ravishankar's study analysed the trigger link in 94 patients who fulfilled the International Headache Society criteria for migraine. In 11 of them, a hair wash was the only trigger; in 45, it was one of the triggers; in 38, the hair wash was a trigger concurrently and in combination with another common trigger.

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Another factor that adds to the pain, suggests Ravishankar, is genetic predisposition.

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First Published Date: 23 Apr, 02:09 IST
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