What causes brain freeze?

Pretty much everyone has experienced brain freeze (also known as ice cream headache) at one point or another. And while scientists have learned a fair bit about what might cause brain freeze, there's still much we don't understand about what gives rise to this painful phenomenon.

In this installment of SciAm's Instant Egghead, Ferris Jabr runs us through a couple of competing theories behind brain freeze, offers a suggestion on how to get rid of it once it strikes, and gives some tips on how to avoid it in the first place. The first tip is obvious (quit eating your ice cream so fast, dummy), but I was definitely surprised to hear about the second one. [SciAm]


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