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Teen Headaches Tied to Alcohol, Coffee

Too little exercise also implicated in study

MONDAY, June 7, 2010 (HealthDay News) -- A new German study links alcohol, smoking and coffee drinking to higher rates of migraine and tension headaches among teens and young adults.

An estimated 5 to 15 percent of high school students surveyed reported suffering from migraines, and 15 to 25 percent said they have tension headaches. Migraines were more common among those who drank coffee and didn't get much exercise. Smoking and alcohol also upped the risk.

Astrid Milde-Busch, a researcher at Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich, Germany, and colleagues surveyed 1,260 students aged 14 to 20 about headaches and their activities.

Of the students, 83 percent said they'd had a headache within the previous six months.

"Our study confirms that adolescents with any type of headache might benefit from regular physical activity and low consumption of alcoholic drinks," Milde-Busch said. "In teens suffering from migraine, a low coffee consumption should also be suggested."

Young adults who skipped meals weren't at higher risk of headache, the researchers found.

The study was published online June 7 in the journal Headache.

More information

For more about headaches, see the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCE: Wiley, press release, June 7, 2010
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