Ways To Deal with Chronic Headaches During Pregnancy

As a mom-to-be, you were probably warned about a lot of the pregnancy woes you’re now experiencing, such as swollen feet, a sore back, and joint pain. But one pregnancy pain people seldom talk about is headaches. Because so many doctors discourage the use of certain painkillers during pregnancy, finding ways to deal with chronic headaches during pregnancy takes a little more ingenuity.

Ways to Deal with Chronic Headaches during Pregnancy
*This is a guest post and all opinions are those of the author. This post may also contain affiliate and/or paid links. Rest assured that I only work with companies and individuals that I trust. While some of those companies and individuals may work in the medical field, this post is not intended to be a substitution for medical advice. Always speak to your doctor if you have concerns about your mental or physical health.
Ways to Deal with Chronic Headaches during Pregnancy

Identify Your Triggers

A plethora of things may trigger a headache, depending on what stage in your pregnancy you’re in. In the first trimester, headaches may be due to changes in blood pressure and hormone levels. In later stages, they may be due to changes in body weight, posture, and muscle strain. Other factors that may contribute to headaches during pregnancy include:

    • Diet
    • Stress
    • Sleep loss
    • Low blood sugar
    • Lack of physical activity
    • Sinus infections
    • Anemia
    • Heart conditions

Many of the following ways of dealing with chronic headaches during pregnancy will cover some of these triggers.

Look at Your Eating Habits

Food may be linked to your pregnancy headaches in several ways. In some instances, a specific food may trigger a headache, such as food containing dairy, caffeine, MSG, or aspartame. In other cases, it isn’t so much about what you eat but the frequency at which you eat something. If you’re not getting enough to eat or enough nutrients, this may also trigger a headache. Eating consistent, nutritious meals is key.

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Manage Stress

Life changes are naturally stressful. Couple this with changes and pains in your own body, and you’re looking at tension headaches. Be sure to take the time to be aware of your emotions and to identify things that are causing you stress. Take time to talk to loved ones about these feelings, and get enough rest. Doing light exercises such as stretching may also offer stress relief.

Get a Massage

Another great way to relieve stress is through massage. Despite common misconceptions, massage and massage chairs don’t increase pregnancy risks. In fact, massage relieves tension and muscle aches, which can trigger migraines and other headaches. Along with this, massage also helps with circulation, and it may improve hormone regulation, which may kick some of those early pregnancy headaches.

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Use Essential Oils

Although many people think of essential oils as a recent fad, the idea of aromatherapy is centuries old. Some essential oils, such as lavender or rose oil, are associated with relaxation and stress relief, which can reduce headache-causing tension. However, many women have found that peppermint oil goes the extra step to relieve headaches and the nausea that often accompanies them.


Headaches are to be expected during pregnancy, the same way you might expect swollen feet or an achy back. But just because they’re expected doesn’t mean you can’t do anything about them. If anything, this gives you the chance to equip yourself with the tools to get through them.


Author Bio

Christina Duron is a writer living in the Chicagoland area. Her passion for writing and mental health help create thought provoking and engaging pieces and hopes to use them to empower mothers and women to embrace the beauty of motherhood.

Author: Vanessa Rapisarda

Vanessa is a married, mother of three gorgeous kids. As a postpartum depression survivor, she writes about maternal mental health and wellness. She believes that speaking up about postpartum depression is one of the strongest things a mother can do to help raise awareness and end the stigma of mental illness.