Headaches aren’t typically considered to be major health problems, but in some cases, they can have a significantly negative impact on quality of life and general happiness. Looking for ways to reduce toe prevalence of headaches naturally involves exploring their causes, and a range of triggers for headaches have been identified in numerous studies. In the case of children, however, research is still uncovering new sources of head pain and related issues. Recently, a study performed in Germany investigated the impact of family conflicts and free time to oneself on the occurrence of headaches in children. The results, as might be expected, indicate that frequent arguments and other stressful situations in the home can lead to more frequent headaches.
The study worked with a number of youths and their families, and focused on discovering at least in part why nearly thirty percent of the world’s children report at least once weekly symptoms of headaches. Gathering data from the participants, the researchers found that those families in which young boys experienced fights or other conflicts more than once per week were greatly more conducive to headaches among children; such boys were approximately 1.8 times more likely to report issues with headaches. Boys who reported experiencing occasional rather than frequent free time to themselves were over two times as likely to experience headaches.
While the resolution and prevention of familial conflicts is likely to be on the agenda of most families participating in therapy, addressing such issues and helping children develop coping strategies and secure more alone time may be of great importance not only for mental well-being, but for the potential to reduce regular physical pain and interference with daily life as well.
© Copyright 2009 by By Noah Rubinstein, LMFT, LMHC, therapist in Olympia, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to GoodTherapy.org.
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