All pregnant women experience a whole new world of pains, aches and a general feeling of being uncomfortable in many parts of their bodies. Believe it or not, many women who have a history of migraines will experience a measure of relief from them during their pregnancy. If you do not have a history of migraines, becoming pregnant can sometimes start the cycle of migraine for a woman.
Although, no definitive cause has ever been identified as the specific reason for migraine headaches, there are many things that have been observed that seem to trigger them. In women, one of the main triggers seems to be hormonal changes. This could explain why girls entering puberty, pregnant and menopausal women tend to experience migraines with no history, or have a sudden cessation of migraine activity following a previous history of headaches. Of course, family history is also thought to play a role in whether or not you will be subject to migraine pain.
Treatments and Solutions
Unfortunately, migraine remedies for pregnant women are not plentiful. Many common treatments for migraine are not safe for the fetus when you are pregnant and some can cause birth defects. The same can be said of natural treatment for migraine relief. You should never take any kind of medication, supplement or herbal remedy except under a physician’s supervision when you are pregnant. Even some of the most common and simple pain relief choices may present unacceptable risks to a pregnancy. Likewise, most of the common prescription medications taken by migraine sufferers are not recommended for use in pregnancy, either because they are known to cause birth defects or excessive bleeding, or simply because not enough research exists to make a determination of safety in pregnant women.
All of this makes it extremely important to attempt to identify the triggers that seem to set off the migraines. Doctors recommend keeping a headache diary. You should make notes of everything that is going on at the time of the headache’s onset and for the previous 24 hours. Where were you, what time was it, how long did the headache last, what did you have to eat, how much sleep did you get the night before, what were the weather conditions and any other information that might prove to be pertinent.
Following is a list of common things that can trigger a migraine.
- MSG preservatives in food
- Aspartame artificial sweetener
Even though caffeine has proven to be a headache remedy for some, an over-abundance or caffeine combined with changes in the body brought about by pregnancy seem to trigger headaches.
When you are pregnant and suffer from migraines, there are some things that may seem very simple, but just may help to prevent the onset of the headache. There are a few medications the physician can prescribe that are judged to be relatively safe in pregnancy. However, try these suggestions before resorting to medications that may or may not cause additional symptoms or complications.
- Try to avoid the headache triggers you have identified.
- Eat your meals and snacks on a regular schedule.
- Drink lots of water.
- Rest and sleep.
- Learn a few relaxation techniques and use them.
You just might make it through your pregnancy with a minimum of additional headache pain.
This post was written By Julie Carter. Long time migraine specialist and one of the editors over at naturalmigrainerelief.org, a website dedicated at sharing various migraine solutions and natural treatments.