Question: I have a migraine every morning. I’ve had it for several months now. I’ve always had them, but not like this. I’ve noticed if I blow my nose in the middle of the night or right before bed then I wake up in the night with a very bad headache. Regular Tylenol does not touch them and laying back down makes them even worse. Unfortunately, the headaches are always there in the morning.
Answer: Headaches that are worse lying down can occur with a number of headache disorders. First, they could occur when there is an increase in spinal fluid pressures. This is a disorder called idiopathic intracranial hypertension. Second, you could have a sinus disease, sometimes you can have an infection of the sinuses and not even know it. Third, there could be other diseases of the brain itself that could make headaches worse when you lie down. I would recommend that you see a physician to receive further evaluation for these possibilities.
Vincent Martin, M.D.
President of the National Headache Foundation