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Alison Beaver

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ask: Why does even 5 minutes of sun cause headache - and 10 mins cause nausea?

By GauguinFan
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My husband gets a pretty severe headache when in the sun for only 4-5 minutes, sometimes even with a baseball cap on but definitely when he is hatless. Today he was outside for about 4 minutes for a fire drill at work and his headache formed in 4 minutes of sun exposure.

20 or more minutes causes nausea and an hour, even with a baseball cap, can cause vomiting. Our summers are pretty hot and sunny (yay for me, nay for him!). I am wondering why this extreme reaction to sun happens? He did not grow up in a place with hot summers but I didn't either and I don't have this problem.

Anyone have any ideas?

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EmpowHER Guest

Earlier in my life I would take an ibuprophen before going out in the sun and don a hat as well as sunproof-clothing & it all worked quite well. Now I do the same BUT instead of the ibuprophen I notice when I begin to tighten up the muscles around my eyes (from the sun and fatique) and consciously relax. When I get home I put on a meditation CD and find that further relaxes the muscles behind my eyes which cause headaches from sun exposure. The CD I most like is: Universal Mind by Kelly Howell. The background music is soothing and Kelly's voice soon puts me into full relaxation....pain just floats away after a few hours....and yep, no ibuprophen needed. Long term ibuprophen use is not good for the body which is why I wanted to use another approach :) ps: While under relaxation-light hypnosis with Kelly's CD I repeat mantras to myself such as....."I am well, all is fine. I move into wellness and all is perfect." --over & over-- tell your body to shift into that zone of perfection. Don't say things like "My pain is going away because then you are paying attention TO the pain and the shift you wish to make is into, obviously, healing and no pain !

August 17, 2014 - 2:05am
EmpowHER Guest


I suffer this since childhood.... but a SHOWER after returning home always helps to cut down the intensity of the headache...

don't think there is any way to prevent it from occurring though...


June 3, 2014 - 3:28am
EmpowHER Guest

I'm only 1/4 Caucasian, the rest is Asian, Native American, and different types of Hispanic. So you could say I tan very easily and fast and never ever get sunburnt. Last summer I had a job at the theme park by where I live and I was running around in the direct sun all day long taking orders and filling orders. It was only till then that I realized that I get super nauseous and dizzy when I'm in the sun even for a few minutes now. I started feeling this way about 2/3 into the working season at the park and ended up having to quit because of it. Now if I try to tan with or without sunscreen (again, I've never ever had a sunburn in my life) I just feel crappy after. Could I be developing an intolerance to the sun/heat??

April 30, 2014 - 10:53pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

You may by hypothyroid. I have an under active thyroid and I am exhibiting some of your symptoms. This is how I relieve them; I use 1 TBSPN of Hemp Seed Oil in cranberry juice before exposure to the sun (2 twice a day 1 before exposure to sunlight and 1 TBSP before bed - so I will not wake up with a migraine. (Arizona Sun is different and more tropical than Midwest/NE Sun). Or, Ingest something that contains ALL High Amino Acids and high Minerals: i.e. dark/Light Bee Pollen or Comb Honey/Honey comb. As we age, our bodies are starved of true Amino acids and minerals. I have noticed that if I chew at least a small amt of honey comb, during exposure to sun, I do not suffer a migraine or fatigue.

July 17, 2014 - 2:39pm
Lena Svensson (reply to Anonymous)

It sounds like you had a heat stroke that day. Once you've had one, you will be extremely sensitive and suspensible to get it again, and it won't take much. Not sure how to delay the onset though.

July 9, 2014 - 6:58am
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

Yes, you could be changing. Our body chemistry can change and what we were ok with one year, we are not the next. Getting older could also be a factor, as could medications.



May 1, 2014 - 10:35am

Good to know you are not the only one with this or any other problem. I have had this sun exposure problem all my life. When I lay out in the sun on the boat or at home I have my head covered with a wet cloth. I found a bandana at walmart that you can wet in ice water or in a cooler, then put on your head works really well when fishing. Sunglasses and Ibuprofen helps before you go in the sun. Umbrella helps if you are in the sun for long periods and don't want to mess your hair with a bandana/rag. Drink, drink, drink lots of water, you can not drink enough in the sun. If i am cutting grass or working outside, I have a water hose close by keep my head wet and drink gatorade. Hope this helps!

April 12, 2014 - 6:59am
EmpowHER Guest

Well… i m only 19 and i love sports i love to play football nd basketball out in sun bt due to these serious headaches i cant enjoy the sun…i too have the same problem as above… i use hat and sunglases when m exposed to sun but still i have this pain whole night…i cant sleep or even think…i feel dizzy nd yes obviously nauesea too bt i have never vomited… is this a type of migraine??? Well i really dont know abt migraines…and ya can anyone explain about eyes colour issue??? i have a brown eyes and dark brown hair…please help me out with this :(

November 13, 2013 - 6:18am
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

I'm unclear as to your question about your eye and hair color. Have you heard that people with lighter eye and/or hair color are more affected by the sun? (not including those with albinism).


November 13, 2013 - 12:00pm
EmpowHER Guest

HI . I live in India . I have had this problem since I was very young. Now Im in my 40's. I think its just an allergic reaction of sorts. I suffer from severe headache and nausea after being out long in the sun .

October 17, 2013 - 8:50am
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