Does Stress Trigger Migraines?

Stress is Not a Migraine Trigger

The general consensus is that stress is not a migraine trigger. Stress in itself is hard enough to quantify, so to label it as the trigger or even the cause of a migraine can be very dangerous.

But why do I get migraines when I'm stressed?

People will often experience the migraines more when they are stressed because the state can make them more susceptible to illness and other conditions.

Furthermore, when we are stressed we often change our environment or behavior to cope with the stress. For example, someone who is stressed about their work may work for longer at their computer without taking the regular breaks they normally do. Or they may skip a meal to try to meet a deadline.

It is these changes during times of stress that are often the real triggers for the migraines.

Common migraine triggers during stressful times include:

  • Hunger – skipping meals.
  • Eye strain – remember to take regular breaks.
  • Dehydration – water can go a long way to help avoid migraines.
  • Posture – very important especially when working long periods.

Stress Can Result in Misdiagnosis

Stress will often mask the real trigger for a migraine. If one accepts it as a migraine trigger, further diagnosis may not occur to reveal the true trigger of the migraine.

Why is Stress Reduction Recommended for Migraine Sufferers?

Stress reduction is a good thing regardless of whether or not a person sufferers from migraines. During times of low stress however, migraine sufferers are more inclined to keep track and control of their known migraine triggers, thus reducing the frequency of their migraines.

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