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Why do I wake up with a pounding headache in the mornings?

I am a 22 year old college student who works 30 hours and goes to class. I try to exercise 3-4 times a week, I drink about 3 glasses of water a day. I generally eat healthily, but on average only get about 7 hours of sleep a night. I've been having the headache issue for a few months. I prevents me from moving as quickly as I need to in the morning. I'm not taking any medication for it right now.
Headaches can be divided into several categories. It sounds like your headaches may be associated with the pace of your life. Headaches in the morning (especially ones that come on every morning) should be looked at carefully to be sure that they are not do to a rare brain tumor. I am not suggesting that is what you have, but when a doctor has a patient with morning headaches, a brain tumor is what needs ruled out first. The most common types of headaches are tension headaches and migraines. Tension headaches are do to contractions of the muscles in the back of the head. They start in the neck and work there way around the head on both sides. Migraines are usually on one side of the head and have a throbbing nature to them. Sometimes they are preceded by and aura such as flashing lights seen in the corner of the eye. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with your primary care physician. He or she can examine you, perform a full neurological exam, and get a detailed history of your symptoms. From there your doctor can recommend additional testing (if necessary) and treatment for your pain. I hope you feel better soon.
This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.
If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.

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