Migraines and Pregnancy… What to be Prepared For

migraines and pregnancyMigraine headaches are a condition, typically, seen more in women than in men. Migraines are different than stress or tension headaches in that they are a form of vascular headaches. This means they stem from the dilation of blood vessels in the brain. 

When it comes to pregnancy, it’s a gamble as to whether or not your migraines will get worse, or subside during the pregnancy. Both scenarios have been seen. If your migraines continue during pregnancy or get worse, it is possible you may need migraine treatment during your pregnancy.

Another scenario is that migraines start, altogether, during pregnancy. You may never have had issues with migraines until you become pregnant. Whatever your situation, you may need migraine treatment, and you may need to learn to manage your migraines during pregnancy. 

Medications are not recommended during pregnancy, if they can be avoided. However, your doctor will know if your condition warrants needing to take any medications. Your physician will know if the risk of not taking medication will outweigh the risk of taking them. 

Migraines are not necessarily dangerous, but certain situations or conditions can be dangerous. You may need migraine treatment, so let your doctor know if your migraine is: 

  • Coupled with a fever.
  • Coupled with blurred vision.
  • Lasts for several hours, or recurs often.

One time during your pregnancy that you may notice your migraines being worse is during the first trimester. This is when morning sickness typically sets in and can make you want to eat and drink less. This can cause dehydration and low blood sugar. Both can create the perfect conditions for headaches or migraines, leaving you requiring migraine treatment.

During pregnancy, be prepared to:

  • Eat often – Eat often but in small amounts. Over eating can make you feel worse.
  • Drink often – You should also be prepared to drink small amounts of water often to avoid dehydration.

Both eating and drinking should help you combat morning sickness, as well as headaches. If it doesn’t, you should seek medical advice. 

You should always keep your doctor or health care provider up-to-date on your migraines. Let him know when and how often you are having them, along with other details. Keep a migraine diary of your headaches. Notate things like: 

  • When you get migraines: time of day, activities, etc.
  • Notate how long each migraine lasts.
  • Rate the migraines on a scale of 1-10, for how bad they are.

If you notice certain things triggering your migraines, try to stay away from these triggers. Make sure to get plenty of rest and see your doctor regularly. Keep your doctor up-to-date on your migraines, in case he wants to try a specific migraine treatment program for you during your pregnancy.

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Image credit: by nemuneko.jc

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