What Are the Causes of a Headache during Orgasm?

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  • Written By: Meshell Powell
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 20 August 2019
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Although relatively uncommon, some people may occasionally experience a headache during orgasm. In most cases, these headaches are not medically significant, although they may be caused by serious medical conditions such as a brain aneurysm in rare situations. Some of the more common causes of a headache while orgasming include muscle tightening, increased heart rate or blood pressure, or even the use of some medications. Any questions or concerns about the development of headache during climax, especially if there are any preexisting health concerns, should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.

It is believed that the most frequent causes of the development of a headache during orgasm are blood vessel dilation or muscle contractions in the neck during sexual activity. Men seem to be more prone to developing a headache during orgasm than women, although the reason for this is not clearly understood. Many people will experience at least one headache during orgasm at some point, although a select few may be faced with this painful symptom on a regular basis. Sinus infections or the use of certain medications, especially birth control pills, may contribute to some headaches that develop during sex.


The presence of a headache during orgasm that is not associated with any underlying medical conditions is referred to as a benign coital headache. The pain associated with this type of headache usually comes on quickly and is often described as the worst headache ever experienced by the sufferer. If these headaches persist, a doctor may recommend avoiding sexual relations for a couple of weeks after making sure there are no serious medical conditions present.

In some cases, the headaches may continue, even after temporarily abstaining from sex. When this occurs, prescription medications may be helpful in preventing a recurrence of the headache. Relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, or deep breathing may also be beneficial in preventing the headaches associated with sexual activity.

A headache during orgasm that occurs suddenly and is debilitating should be treated as a medical emergency. Due to the changes in heart rate and blood pressure during sex, those with certain health risks may experience a brain bleed due to a ruptured aneurysm or stroke. A series of diagnostic tests will likely be performed in an attempt to rule out such serious complications. Once the brain bleed has been diagnosed or if no bleed is found, the doctor and patient can discuss appropriate treatment options for the individual situation.


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Post 5

I get these headaches with orgasm, but not every time. I've had maybe ten or twelve in a period of eight years. But when they do happen, I get really scared. They're beyond any pain I've ever experienced before. It actually feels like my head will explode. Thankfully they only last approximately 10-15 min. During that time, I can't even move my neck or head due to the pain. I'm going to take the breathing advice and see if that helps.

Post 4

I've had these also. They are caused by holding your breath just prior to orgasm. When I stopped the habit of holding my breath and kept breathing as much as possible before orgasm they stopped.

Post 3

I get these too and I have to take a pain reliever before intercourse to prevent them.

Post 2

@turkay1-- I'm glad you saw a doctor and had a check-up.

I had the same exact problem and I ended up seeing a homeopathy doctor about it who said that the problem is probably due to a rapid increase in blood pressure and irregular breathing. I started taking some yoga classes and practiced meditation and breathing and I haven't had an orgasm headache since.

I think my issue was breathing. I realized after these classes that I tend to hold on to my breath during intercourse and breathe normally only after orgasm which is causing the headaches. It's a combination of not getting enough oxygen and then getting too much air at once which is affecting my blood pressure.

You should try some breathing exercises and pay attention to your breathing during intercourse. If you find yourself holding your breath, try to breathe normally and see if it makes a difference.

Post 1

I started experiencing headaches during and after orgasm recently and I can't understand why it's happening.

I did speak to my doctor about it and he checked my blood pressure and even sent me for an MRI, but everything is normal. He told me not to worry about it.

I wouldn't worry about it except that the headaches are extremely painful and start right at the time of orgasm and continue for the rest of the day. It really is debilitating because I have to lock myself in my bedroom, close the curtains and try to sleep.

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