Brain freeze, sometimes referred to as ice cream headache, is something many people dread. Yet it is something that many suffer from if they eat ice cream or drink a freezing cold drink too quickly. In fact, brain freeze is deemed a short duration headache. But do you know the causes of brain freeze or how it can be stopped?
What Causes Brain Freeze?
Essentially, brain freeze is a type of headache that results from cold stimulus. It is usually when something cold makes contact with the palate or roof of the mouth that brain freeze sets in.
While the trigeminal nerve recognizes face-related pain, the brain thinks the pain is emanating from the forehead. The term “referred pain” is used where the body interprets pain as coming from an area other than its real source.
Usually, brain freeze manifests itself around ten seconds after something cold has been placed in the mouth. It normally lasts for about twenty seconds but some patients report it lasting much longer. The pain can hit quickly and get very intense when nerve endings react suddenly.
Can You Prevent Brain Freeze?
Because it is a rapid cooling down followed by a warming up in the body that causes brain freeze, there are some ways to prevent it such as:
While it is irritating, brain freeze is not a serious condition. Some studies of the subject have shown that migraine patients are more prone to getting brain freeze. It may very well be that these findings will lead to new medicines being developed to treat the cause of this type of headache. If that happens, any new drug treatments could bring considerable relief to those who are susceptible to brain freeze. For more information, talk to a dentist like those at Centre Dentaire Benjamin Serfaty.