Teens with habit of smoking, obesity and not exercising enough were 3.4 times more likely to have frequent headaches than those with none of these habits.
Overweight teens were 40 percent more likely to have frequent headaches than those with no negative factors. Teens who smoked were 50 percent more likely to have frequent headaches, and teens who exercised less than twice a week were 20 percent more likely to have frequent headaches than those who exercised at least twice a week and had no other negative factors.
Approximately 6000 students were questioned by the nurses about their habits & weight. They also completed a questionnaire about physical activity and smoking. Out of the group, 36 percent of girls and 21 percent of boys reported having recurrent headaches within the last year.
A total of 16 percent of the students were overweight, 19 percent were smokers, and 31 percent exercised less than twice a week.
Study author John-Anker Zwart, MD, PhD, of the University of Oslo said the study suggests that the treatment and prevention of headaches in teens may need to include management of healthy habits such as regular exercise, healthy food choices and stopping smoking.