[ 2006-10-08 10:20 ]
Most people have experienced the dreaded ice cream headache at some
point. You are minding your own business, eating something like an ice cream
cone, a milk shake, a snow cone... Then, suddenly you are hit with the most
According to Dr. Joseph Hulihan of Temple University, ice cream pain, also
known as "brain freeze", is the most common form of head pain, occurring in one
third of a randomly selected population.
The condition is caused by
extremely cold foods or beverages that touch the roof of the mouth and set in
motion a chain of events. When the nerves that travel to the brain are
stimulated, the blood vessels in the front of the head expand and contract like
they do during a migraine headache.
Even though this sensation typically lasts only 10 to 20 seconds, the pain is
Studies show that the headache could be elicited only in hot weather;
attempts to reproduce the pain during the winter were unsuccessful, even with
use of a cold stimulus of the same temperature.
No treatment is usually required, and sufferers rarely seek medical
attention. Since the posterior aspect of the palate is most likely to produce the referred pain
of ice cream headache, the easy way to avoid "brain freeze" is to keep cold
things away from the roof of your mouth!
migraine headache: 偏头痛
（北京外国语大学通讯员谢丽供稿 英语点津 Annabel 编辑）