Managing Seasonal Migraines
Last updated: January 2022
I discovered early in my migraine journey that I was more likely to get a migraine on the weekend than I was during the week. But I was surprised to learn that I could also be more vulnerable to migraines at the change of seasons.
What's the logic of seasonal migraine?
The logic behind weekend migraines made sense to me. There was a change in my sleep, stress levels and even eating habits. I also recognized that these factors were within my control for the most part, so that was a relief.
But I was stumped on the logic behind seasonal migraines. What exactly was the trigger? And did I have any control over it?
Before I go further, I’ll share the good news is that not everyone is affected by weather changes. But if you are one of those that do, tune in because there are somethings within your control to support you.
Weather is a relatively common trigger for migraineurs. It’s caused by the change in barometric pressure, which is atmospheric pressure. You may have experienced it during a previous a storm.
The change of the seasons is another common time for a change in barometric pressure.
What can we do?
So, what exactly can you do if this is one of your triggers?
I’ll first state the obvious, we certainly don’t have any control over Mother Nature.
Is it time to move?
That said, if it’s significantly impacting your quality of life, then you may see it as an opportunity to move. It can sound dramatic, but I know many people who have relocated for health reasons and have found great health benefits and happiness from it too! So, it’s something to consider.
Avoid other triggers
Beyond that, it can be incredibly helpful to reduce your exposure to other triggers if you know a change in seasons is coming up. Perhaps this is a time to clean up your diet a bit, prioritize sleep, boost your hydration, and stay consistent with any recommended supplements that are effective for you like magnesium or fish oil.
Be proactive about allergies
Also, if you know that Spring weather is a big trigger for your migraines, as it can cause more allergies including sinus congestion and head tension, then it may be a good thing to look into ways to proactively address allergy symptoms, so you can get/stay ahead of it.
This isn’t as widely discussed in the context of seasonal migraines but is certainly one to consider.
Certain seasons may bring on more stress than others. Fall, for example, tends to be a very busy time of year with increased activities both during the week and on the weekends. In comparison, summer is often much more relaxed.
Let-down and stress attacks
So, depending upon whether you tend to get more “letdown headaches” (migraines when your body starts to relax) or stress headaches (migraines when you’re in a heightened state of stress), you may find yourself more susceptible at one season more than another.
This is when stress management techniques and consistent sleep hygiene habits can be especially beneficial.
Pay attention to your body
As mentioned, everyone’s experience with migraines is unique. So, the most valuable step you can take is paying attention to your body and adjusting it according to its unique needs.
What’s your experience with seasonal migraines? Is there a time of year when you tend to get more migraines? If so, how do you best manage them? Share below so we can all learn from one another.
Are the family and friends you will be seeing this holiday season understanding about migraine?