A headache, fatigue, and dizziness at mountainous destinations can be signs of high-altitude sickness, also known as mountain sickness. These symptoms occur because the body needs time to adapt to the lower oxygen content of air at high altitudes, usually those above 8,000 feet. As the altitude increases, if the body does not have enough time to adjust, other symptoms develop, including confusion, shortness of breath, and fatigue. In extreme cases, the brain and lungs may enlarge and be damaged. Temporary treatments such as hydration can address symptoms of high-altitude sickness, but removal to a lower altitude is often the only solution.
A headache may be the only sign of altitude sickness, and headache medication plus hydration is the simple treatment. Still, it is an important warning sign that should remind you to avoid alcohol and caffeine at least until you have spent a few days adjusting to this new height. You should also be careful about going to sleep with altitude sickness, as the condition could worsen during your sleep.
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