Continuous throbbing headaches in pregnancy can be seriously annoying for a pregnant woman. However, migraine can be extremely discomforting and leave you feeling hopeless especially when you are pregnant and unable to take normal medicines to alleviate the problem. Read on to learn about headaches and migraines during pregnancy.
The hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy are the main cause of headaches. Pregnancy is known to trigger sinus, fatigue, tensions, hunger or headaches due to physical and emotional stress. Though you are not allowed to take any pain relievers, you could try some basic home remedies.
Although it is quite common to get tension headaches during pregnancy, migraines can be seriously affecting your daily chores. Many women who otherwise experience migraine headaches find that pregnancy has eased the problem for them. But if you are having migraine headache during pregnancy it can make you feel nauseated, fatigued, dizzy and sensitive to light and sound. However, if you are experiencing migraine during pregnancy, you should not worry because there are ways that can help you get relief from this type of pain.
What are the Causes of Migraines during Pregnancy?
Well, you can blame the pregnancy hormones for migraines also. But hormones are not the only causes behind getting migraine pain. Experts are of the opinion that changes in the nerve pathways, altered blood flow to the brain and an imbalance in the brain chemicals can be the cause for migraines during pregnancy.
Stress, glaring lights, loud noise, fatigue, excessive heat or cold, tobacco smoke can be triggers for pregnancy migraine. Some food items like artificial sweeteners, chocolate, nitrates in hot dogs and other processed meat can also be included in the list of triggers. Skipping meals or lack of sleep can also trigger your migraine during pregnancy.
Usually migraine lasts for few hours, but if it is left untreated, it can get extended for the full day or even two. The worst thing is that migraines are completely unpredictable and leave one exhausted and stressed out.
Basic Home Remedy for Headache
Firstly try to relax. Do yoga or meditate. Make sure that you are getting adequate rest. If your head aches due to low blood sugar, make sure that you are eating well. Carry some high-energy snacks with you at all times. Seek some peace and quiet and get some fresh air. For a tension headache, try an ice pack at the back of your neck for 20 minutes. Keep your eyes closed. If it is due to a sinus problem, apply hot and cold compresses alternatively for 30 seconds each for 10 minutes 4 times a day. If your headache still persists, and is accompanied by dizziness or blurred vision, consult your doctor immediately.
Tips to Help you Treat Migraine during Pregnancy
Have a quick look some tips to treat migraine during pregnancy.
Keep a migraine journal
Maintaining a diary for your headaches will help you understand your specific triggers. You can avoid those situations or food to stay away from the severe pain or talk to your doctor so that he works best to relive your pain.
What you Should Write Down Each Time you Have Headache
Symptoms - Remember symptoms vary from one person to another. So, you should write down exactly what and how intense you feel when you have the migraine. Along with describing the pain, you should also mention whether you feel nauseated or find yourself extra sensitive to light, sound or smells.
Time - Note down the time of the start and end of the pain.
Change - Analyse and write whether there was any change in the environment during last hours or so. It can be travelling to another place, trying new food or sudden change in weather.
Food and Beverages - You should note down the food items and beverages you had in last 24 hours before your migraine started.
Treatment - Mention the treatment you tried for your headache and do not forget to add whether it helped you get relief or not.
Triggers - Common triggers of migraine are caffeine, chocolate, foods with certain preservatives like nitrates and monosodium glutamate. Artificial sweetener is also seen causing headache in many cases.
Opt for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Holistic therapies like massage, acupuncture, meditation, yoga and biofeedback can help get rid of migraines. These also help reduce stress level which is a migraine trigger.
Avoid the Triggers
Once you know your triggers, avoid them as far as possible. Get enough sleep and whenever you feel like resting, listen to the requirement of your body.
There are some exercises that are recommended for pregnant women. Exercising regularly can reduce the frequency and severity of migraine.
Rest and Relax
One of the best ways to get rid of the migraine is to take rest. So, lie down quietly when you have the pain.
If you are unable to get relief from the above tips, you should consult your doctor as soon as possible.
What causes headaches and migraines during pregnancy? How to deal with headaches and migraines during pregnancy? Which home remedies are safe for treating headaches and migraines during pregnancy? Discuss here.
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- The Indiaparenting Team