Can Sitting Cause Headaches? Understanding the Link between Posture and Pain

What is a headache?

Before we discuss whether can sitting cause headaches we have to know what is a headache. Headaches are a common illness experienced by many people that causes pain and discomfort in the head or neck. These can range from mild to severe and may be accompanied by many more symptoms such as nausea, light or sound sensitivity, and dizziness. Tension headaches, migraines, and cluster headaches are all types of headaches that can be caused by a range of factors such as poor posture, eye strain, stress, and anxiety. In this article:

  1. Types of Headaches
  2. The link between sitting and headaches: Can sitting cause headaches?
  3. Preventing Headaches Caused by Sitting
  4. Treatment Options for Headaches Caused by Sitting
  5. FAQS
  6. Conclusion

Types of Headaches:

Headaches can be classified according to their symptoms and symptoms. The three types of headaches are tension headaches, migraine headaches, and cluster headaches.

Tension headaches:

Tension headaches, which affect around 80% of the population, are the most common type of headache. Tension headaches can last anywhere from 30 minutes to a few days, and they may be characterized by symptoms such as light and sound sensitivity, muscle aches, and exhaustion. Tension headaches are unknown in their specific cause, however, they are considered to be related to stress, muscle tension in the head and neck, and poor posture.

Migraine headaches:

Migraines are a type of headache that affects about 12% of the population. They are distinguished by moderate to severe pain, typically on one side of the head, and are recognized by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light and sound. Migraines can persist for several hours to many days and can affect a person’s ability to do regular tasks. The specific reason for migraines is unknown, but they are thought to be linked to genetics, hormone imbalances, and changes in the chemical activity of the brain.

Cluster headaches:

Cluster headaches are pretty uncommon, affecting fewer than 1% of the population. They are distinguished by extreme pain, which is commonly felt around one eye or temple and is frequently described as a scorching or piercing sensation. Cluster headaches occur in cycles, with each cycle lasting several weeks to several months and involving many headaches each day, frequently at the same time each day. Symptoms of cluster headaches include eye redness, drooping eyelids, and a runny or stuffy nose. The specific cause of cluster headaches is unknown, however, they are thought to be related to abnormalities in the hypothalamus of the brain.

The link between sitting and headaches: Can sitting cause headaches?

A lot of things contribute to headaches, including poor posture, decreased blood flow, and eye strain. Sitting for long periods might trigger these conditions, resulting in headaches.

Poor posture:

Poor posture is one of the most common causes of headaches when sitting. We may slump or hunch over when we sit for lengthy periods, which can cause stress in the neck and shoulder muscles.

Can Sitting Cause Headaches

Forward head posture:

When we sit to work with our heads forward, the muscles in our neck and shoulders are stiff and we feel pain. This tension can cause headaches, primarily if it is held for a long amount of time.

Hunching over a computer:

When working on a computer, we may lean forward to read the screen, which causes us to hunch over the computer. This can result in neck and shoulder muscle tightness and headaches and fatigue.

Reduced blood flow:

Sitting can also produce headaches due to decreased blood flow. Long durations of sitting can limit blood supply to the brain, causing stress in the neck and shoulder muscles, which can aggravate headaches.

Reduced blood circulation to the brain:

When we sit for lengthy periods, our bodies may be unable to properly circulate blood to the brain. Headaches, dizziness, and other symptoms may cause due to sitting for a long time

Pressure in the neck and shoulder muscles:

Low blood flow can create strain in the neck and shoulder muscles, which can lead to headaches.

Eye strain:

Long periods of looking at a computer screen or other digital gadgets like a mobile phone screen can induce eye strain, which can contribute to headaches.

Prolonged computer screen staring:

When we stare at a computer screen for an extended amount of time, our eyes might become strained, resulting in headaches. Other symptoms of this strain include dry eyes and hazy vision.

Preventing Headaches Caused by Sitting:

Headaches caused by sitting can be prevented by taking several steps like this:

Keeping a good posture:

Maintaining excellent posture is one of the most effective strategies to avoid headaches caused by sitting. Correct sitting posture can help relieve strain in the neck and shoulder muscles, which can cause headaches. Here are some pointers to help you keep proper posture:

By using a supportive chair: Choose a chair that will help you to sit in good posture and support your lower back. A chair with adjustable lumbar support can help you to keep your spine in a good shape.

Adjusting the monitor’s height: Adjust the monitor’s height so that the top of the screen is at or slightly below eye level. This can help to reduce neck and eye discomfort.

Can Sitting Cause Headaches

Taking breaks and stretching:

Taking frequent breaks and stretching can help decrease sitting-related headaches. Here are some tips for stretching and taking breaks:

Every 30 minutes, stand up and move around: Taking breaks every 30 minutes might assist relieve tension in the neck and shoulder muscles. To enhance blood flow and alleviate tension, stand up, stretch, and walk about.

Neck and shoulder exercises: Basic neck and shoulder stretches can help to reduce tension and prevent a person from headaches. Roll your head from side to side, for example, or extend your arms and shoulders by stretching your arms up over your head and holding for a few seconds.

Managing stress:

Stress can be a trigger for headaches, and reducing stress can help prevent headaches induced by sitting. Here are some stress-reduction suggestions:

Deep breathing exercises: Deep breathing exercises can help in the reduction of stress and tension. Close your eyes and breathe deeply in and out through your nose and sit comfortably to do this exercise try to focus on your breath.

Meditation and mindfulness practices: These processes can help reduce stress and increase relaxation. Set aside some time each day to sit quietly and focus on your breathing, or use a guided meditation app for better understanding.

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Treatment Options for Headaches Caused by Sitting:

Headaches caused by sitting can be treated using a variety of methods, including:

Over-the-counter pain relievers:

Over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen are commonly used to treat headaches that are caused by sitting. These medicines can help relieve pain and inflammation and are useful for mild to moderate headaches. It is critical to follow the label’s recommended dosage guidelines and to avoid taking these medications too frequently, as overuse might result in severe headaches.

Prescription medications:

A healthcare physician may give harsher drugs such as triptans, ergotamines, or opioids for more severe or chronic headaches caused by sitting. These drugs are typically used to treat migraines and cluster headaches and should be taken only when prescribed by a doctor. It is important to remember that some prescription drugs have adverse effects and may not be suitable for everyone.

Alternative therapies:

Alternative therapies,  beneficial in relieving headaches caused by sitting such as:


Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese technique in which small needles are inserted into particular places on the body to reduce pain and promote healing. Acupuncture has been demonstrated to be useful in the treatment of migraines and tension headaches, as well as in the reduction of stress and promotion of relaxation.

Chiropractic treatment:
Chiropractic therapy is manipulating the spine and other joints to promote healing and alleviate pain. Chiropractors can treat headaches induced by sitting with a range of procedures, including spinal adjustments, massage, and stretching exercises. Chiropractic care has been demonstrated to be useful in reducing headache frequency and intensity, as well as improving posture and reducing tension in the neck and shoulder muscles.


Can sit in the sun cause headaches?

Yes, sitting in the sun can give some people headaches. Heat and direct sunlight can produce dehydration, which is a common source of headaches. Dehydration can induce a drop in blood pressure and low blood pressure, which can cause headaches.

Can sit in the dark cause headaches?

Some people may experience headaches after sitting in the dark for a long period. Sitting in a dark room may cause tension headaches.

Can sit too close to the tv cause headaches?

Sitting too near to the television can induce headaches in some people, especially if they watch for long periods. TVs generate blue light, which can interrupt the sleep-wake cycle and induce headaches, particularly late at night. Blue light can also cause eye strain and weariness.


In conclusion, prolonged sitting can produce headaches due to several causes such as poor posture, decreased blood flow, and eye strain. Sitting headaches can be avoided by maintaining excellent posture, taking pauses and stretching, and reducing stress. Over-the-counter pain medicines, prescription pharmaceuticals, and alternative therapies such as acupuncture and chiropractic care can all help relieve headache symptoms. To avoid headaches, it is critical to be aware of how long you are sitting and to take steps to maintain appropriate posture and limit eye strain. We can prevent headaches and improve our overall health and well-being by recognizing the relationship between posture and pain.

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