Migraine headaches are a common occurrence, affecting nearly 2.7 million Canadians(1). Causes for migraines can vary greatly, and can include the following:
- Hormonal changes
- Food additives
Another common cause of migraine headaches is the weather. Nearly 73% of people with migraine headaches reported weather as a trigger. Although there is no direct evidence that weather can trigger a migraine, there are a few theories about the relationship between migraine headaches and weather, such as:
- Migraines could be a defense mechanisms to encourage a person to change their location to a more suitable area
- Migraine sufferer may have a low pain threshold, making them more sensitive to pressure changes in the atmosphere
- Weather changes can cause a change in serotonin levels in the brain which could trigger a migraine.
- Low pressure and high humidity can cause blood vessels in the brain to expand or contract. This can change blood flow which could cause a migraine headache.
If you suspect your migraine headaches are a result of weather changes, the following tips may help you:
- Start a headache diary noting your symptoms and weather changes. Over time this could illustrate a connection between the two and can help you better prepare for a migraine in the future.
- Keep an eye on your symptoms; some of the most common symptoms include: frequent yawning, irritability, depression and pressure.
- Try an ionizer of humidifier or walk by a body of water to help reduce symptoms.