Jeff Reagan’s Sunday Thoughts (brain freeze edition)

The hot days of summer remind me of being a kid. 

Sweltering in the back of a church with no air conditioning.

Fidgeting in my “Sunday best” and trying not to get a side eye glance from my mom.

But there was one thing that I could look forward to after the sermon was over.

Ice cream.

On the really hot days, we’d go across town to an old-fashioned soda fountain. (Of course, it wasn’t “old fashioned” back then…)

I can remember having a hard time deciding what to get, and diving right into a cone or even a sundae if my parents were in the mood to stick around the shop for a while.

And to this day, I can remember something else… brain freeze.

I don’t eat ice cream that much now, but all I have to do is close my eyes and the feeling can come back to me.

A piercing pain in the front of my head. I’d grimace, and the whole family would know what was happening… it seemed to only happen to me. Maybe I should have slowed down a bit.

Fortunately, it didn’t last long. And considering how good the ice cream was… yeah, it was worth it.

But why does it happen?

I was wondering, so I did some digging.

Brain freeze” happens when something very cold is introduced behind the nose and palate.

There’s a bundle of nerves in this part of the mouth, and when they sense something cold, they send an instant message to thebrain.

This causes arteries and blood vessels to react. And as a result, your head starts throbbing…

It’s not dangerous, and it usually lasts only seconds. All it takes to make it go away is to let that area of your mouth warm up.

You can wait it out. You can drink a little warm water. Or try sticking your tongue on the roof of your mouth. There’s no science behind that last one, but some people say it works…

Or you could avoid ice cream entirely.

But what fun is that?

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

God Bless,

Jeff Reagan
Editor, Patriot Health Alliance

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