Pain In The Head

Headaches during pregnancy can be a real pain in the… you know what. What gives?

Pregnant woman with headache

Are pregnancy headaches common?

Tension headaches are quite common during pregnancy, particularly during the first trimester. There are a few things that can be attributed to these painful side effects of pregnancy: Hormone changes in your body as well as the increase in blood volume and circulation early in pregnancy.

Second trimester relief

If you can make it through the first trimester of tension headaches, you may find relief in the second trimester when hormones begin to stabilize and your body becomes used to the changes it’s going through.

How to deal

Most medication is not recommended during pregnancy, but most doctors will give the okay for you to take acetaminophen but not aspirin and ibuprofen. Check with your doctor for his specific advice.

Natural remedies

Lie down in a dimly lit room with a cool compress on your forehead.

Stay nourished

A headache can be the result of dehydration or low blood sugar. Make sure to drink plenty of water during pregnancy and eat smaller, more frequent meals. Keep snacks like almonds or an apple in your purse just in case.

Maintain your exercise routine

Keep up with your workouts during pregnancy to stave off headaches. Even if you don’t feel up for a cardio routine, a brisk walk around the block could be enough to ease your headache pain.

Relax

Try deep breathing exercises, yoga and/or meditation to relieve your headaches.

Get a prenatal massage

Get a massage that focuses on relieving tension in the neck, shoulders and back, which can help alleviate headaches.

Keep a food journal

When you start experiencing headaches, take note – literally. Write down what you’ve been eating and drinking and try to find a pattern for what might be causing the headaches. Avoid too much caffeine, chocolate, nitrates (like in hot dogs or deli meat) and sulfites found in dried fruit and processed foods.

More on pregnancy symptoms

Dealing with pregnancy heartburn
Fending off fatigue
Moms share their first pregnancy symptoms

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