Headaches During Pregnancy? Safe Ways To Ease The Pain

Posted on: 27 October 2015

The hormonal changes you go through after you become pregnant can often lead to headaches, especially during your first trimester. This can be especially bothersome, since the discomfort can interfere with the joy and excitement you should be experiencing, having recently found out that you're expecting. Many mothers-to-be are not sure how to manage headaches during pregnancy, since many of the medications used to manage headaches may not be safe for pregnant women. Luckily, there are several safe ways to soothe the pain.

Relaxation techniques.

While hormonal changes are certainly a major contributor in most pregnancy headaches, the stress associated with this life change may be affecting you, too. Try relaxing the stress away with some yoga or meditation. Try yoga tapes or classes made specifically for pregnant women, so you'll be confident you can complete the moves. When you feel a headache coming on, take some time out to do yoga or meditate; you might be able to ward off the pain before it becomes too intense.

Keep a food diary.

Certain foods may be triggers for your headaches. Try keeping a food diary, in which you write down everything you eat and also make note of when you develop headaches. You may be able to identify certain foods that are contributing to your headaches, and then eliminate them from your diet. Make sure you're drinking plenty of water, too. Dehydration can lead to headaches even if you're not pregnant, and it's not uncommon for pregnant women to become dehydrated as their blood volume increases and they don't adapt to drinking more to support it.

Apply a cold compress.

When a headache does come on, applying a cold compress to your head can help soothe the pain. Wrap the ice or ice pack in a thin cloth, so you don't risk giving yourself frost bite. Holding the compress against your temples tend to be especially effective.

Take some acetaminophen.

While most women want to avoid taking medications during pregnancy, the general consensus in the medical community is that acetaminophen is generally safe to take while pregnant. If you cannot find relief using the other methods suggested here, taking a dose of acetaminophen when you really need it is a worthy solution. However, be sure to check with your OBGYN before taking it, and only take the amount recommended on the packaging. Do not take ibuprofen, aspirin, or any other pain relieving drugs, as these do not have the same track record of safety as acetaminophen. If you still have questions, contact your local OBGYN, as they always consider what's best for your pregnancy.