Quality CareFind out why Mayo Clinic is the right place for your health care. Make an appointment.
Meet the StaffFind a directory of doctors and departments at all Mayo Clinic campuses. Visit now.
Research and Clinical TrialsSee how Mayo Clinic research and clinical trials advance the science of medicine and improve patient care. Explore now.
Visit Our SchoolsEducators at Mayo Clinic train tomorrow’s leaders to deliver compassionate, high-value, safe patient care. Choose a degree.
Professional ServicesExplore Mayo Clinic’s many resources and see jobs available for medical professionals. Get updates.
Give to Mayo ClinicHelp set a new world standard in care for people everywhere. Give now.
Mayo Clinic offers appointments in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota and at Mayo Clinic Health System locations.
Subscribe to Housecall
Our general interest e-newsletter keeps you up to date on a wide variety of health topics.
If you have nighttime headaches or headaches that awaken you from sleep, see your doctor for an accurate diagnosis. Treatment for nighttime headaches varies, depending on the type of headache and any underlying causes.
Common headache types such as cluster headaches and migraines may occur during sleep or at night in some people. Treatment for these headaches depends on their frequency and severity and may include medications to treat the headache itself as well as prevent future episodes.
Other people may experience "alarm clock" (hypnic) headaches, which solely begin during sleep. Hypnic headaches are rare and occur most commonly after age 50.
Hypnic headaches usually awaken a person at the same time every night, but it's also possible to have daytime naps interrupted by hypnic headaches.
The exact cause of hypnic headaches isn't known, but treatments that may provide relief for some individuals include:
There are reports of small numbers of people whose headaches respond to other agents.
Jerry W. Swanson, M.D.
Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products. Advertising revenue supports our not-for-profit mission.
Check out these best-sellers and special offers on books and newsletters from Mayo Clinic.
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization and proceeds from Web advertising help support our mission. Mayo Clinic does not endorse any of the third party products and services advertised.
A single copy of these materials may be reprinted for noncommercial personal use only. "Mayo," "Mayo Clinic," "MayoClinic.org," "Mayo Clinic Healthy Living," and the triple-shield Mayo Clinic logo are trademarks of Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research.