I get a headache from being out in the sun - is there any solution to this?

I love to garden and work outside, but for some unknown reason, I get a headache when I come in from working in the sun. I wear a sunhat and sunglasses, and have dark-coloured eyes, but it doesn’t seem to make a difference. Am I missing something? Is there any way to avoid the splitting headache after being in the sun? Or should I just take Tylenol as soon as I come in from working outside and accept it as just the way it is?

And here I was thinking I’d be able to help, because I get headaches in the sun too. But for me, the solution was hats, so no.

Are you wearing hats that cover your whole head, or those hatless brim things? Because for me, the problem is sunlight coupled with the heat on my dark hair.

Can’t offer more than sympathy I’m afraid.

Do you drink water while you’re outside working? Even if you aren’t engaged in ‘strenuous activity’, you could still be getting dehydrated. That gives me a headache…

In any case, I’m pretty sure “accept it as just the way it is” is *not *the best way to deal with the situation.

Yeah, my hat covers my whole head - it’s sort of a Tilley hat idea. I do drink water, but maybe not enough.


Is it just the sunlight? I’ve had chronic headaches since I was in the first grade, brought on by being overheated - sunlight, exercise, etc. The only thing I’ve ever found that works is Excedrin, and that only sometimes.

I’ve always had this problem too, ever since I was little. Anytime I do any strenuous activity out in the sun my head would end up pounding. Drinking more water does seem to help.

I have the same problem, and drinking a lot of water seems to help.

The headache I get is incurable by aspirin, Tylenol or even prescription pain killers. It can make me nauseated. I have to lay down in a dark silent room for a few hours and it goes away. It’s not unlike a migraine.

Drinking water after the fact doesn’t seem to do anything to relieve the pain. I seem to be able to prevent it by drinking a lot of water while I’m spending time in the sun.

Try wearing long sleeves and pants as well.

I have a friend with a sun allergy. She gets headaches too (plus some other symptoms), but less so if she really covers up. You might try that and see if it helps.

Do you take any blood pressure medication? Some meds make you photo-sensitive, but doctors don’t always remember to tell you that.

Have you tried an opaque sun umbrella that shades your whole body?

I get a headache from being out in the sun too. So I try not to do it.

I am not even close to a doctor, but my theory is that it’s sort of related to sun poisoning. It can’t just be heat-related because then I’d get a headache from sitting in a hot house. I’m thinking that it must be related to the sun hitting my skin (even through my clothes) and causing inflammation that I may not be able to feel on my skin, but cumulatively affects my body.

Maybe sunscreen might help too. Or those clothes that don’t let as much of the ultraviolet rays on your skin.

Are your sunglasses polarized? My mom gets awful sun headaches if she wears non-polarized sunglasses, because it seems for her that reducing glaring light with dark lenses doesn’t block enough of it to not cause eyestrain.

I have sensitive eyes and without a super dark pair of glasses I still squint some on a bright day. Light leaking from the sides will also give me headaches. Try sunglasses that are very dark and wrap around. Polarizing them will probably help a lot too as they are aligned to cut the reflected light from water and vehicles.

Is it a ‘migraine’-type headache, or more of a tension/muscular headache? I sometimes get a slight headache and stiff neck when I do a lot of work involving looking and/or bending down (such as gardening, which I do a LOT of).

Do you by chance have a very stiff neck/shoulders or similar type symptoms when you have the headache(s)? Just a long-shot guess is all…but it does happen to folks. It helps me to stretch and/or roll my head/neck through range-of-motion periodically (and the snap, crackle, pop of it) now and then to keep from getting such a ‘headache’ - ymmv.

If its the Sun itself causing the HA, then… never mind :slight_smile:

My wife gets headaches in the sun…and sunglasses didn’t help.

However, I tried a super-dooper $160 pair for her (not sure what it was but bought at one of those outdoorsy stores) and she was amazed. She could be out a long time and no headache.

I am allergic to the sun - my symptoms usually start with a headache, followed by nausea, then an itchy, painful rash. I get these symptoms even if there is no sunburn, and even after a brief period of time in the sun. I’ve learned them well enough that, if I am in the sun and get the slightest bit of a headache, I find someplace dark and quiet and rest a while. The only way I have found to really combat it is to wear clothes that cover the majority of my skin whenever possible, and when not, to use strong sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher - I use the stuff they make for babies). Even then, if its hot and I sweat off the sunscreen, I can get sick. Still, the awareness of the problem and the use of sunblock for even minor forays into the sun keep me going.

I think I just found the SDMB’s vampire population.

I’m watching you people. :dubious:

The solution is simple garden at night. That way instead of a headache from the sun you’ll only get a buttache from the moon.

I have a similar problem Cat_Whisperer - you need a much wider brimmed had (I wear one like this: Hat) that covers the back of your neck completely, and you need to drink more fluids and take more breaks.

It’s very dry here - you can get really over heated and not even notice because the dryness wicks the sweat away before you even notice it’s there.

I find I get headaches outside often during the changing seasons due to dehydration as many have said above. I think my body is not used to drinking as much as it needs in the summer and then in teh fall/winter, I am not nearly as thirsty so I end up not drinking enough then either.