Can thinking too hard cause a migraine or a headache, and if so, why?

For example when you've a math problem and you're concentrating hard on a task to solve it.

  • Sometimes I feel like I think too hard and get nose bleeds. Hmm hoping this gets answered in this question too, else I'll have to ask my own.
    – Dave Liu
    Commented Dec 6, 2015 at 6:47
  • @kenorb "thinking too hard" as in you have a math problem and you think to solve it. No stress. Commented Dec 27, 2015 at 16:31
  • @kenorb Medical researchers can ask patient questions, and it doesn't imply a small sample size. Commented Dec 27, 2015 at 20:12
  • 1
    Please do not answer in comments, as they are intended only for clarifying questions/answers.
    – JohnP
    Commented Dec 30, 2015 at 2:35
  • I don't have an answer, but I do have a sort-of joke: Thinking too hard can cause headaches, because if you think hard, you've probably been thinking a while and might be getting dehydrated.
    – anon
    Commented Dec 30, 2015 at 20:37

1 Answer 1


The exact cause of migraines is unknownNHS, although they are thought to be the result of temporary changes, or abnormal brain activity which can affect nerve signals, chemicals and blood vessels in the brain.

It could also relate to your health conditions (e.g. chronic headache), vital energy or specific hormone balance at the given time. Such as levels of sodium2006 or blood sugar (glucose).

Therefore it's not possible to indicate whether concentrating hard on a task can cause migraines or headaches, unless it's caused by emotional (anxiety, tension, stress, etc.) or physical trigger (tiredness, low blood sugar, etc.)NHS.

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