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Weather and migraine: is it really a trigger and why?

Weather and migraine

Weather is increasingly reported as a trigger for Migraine

<span style="font-weight: 400;">A migraine is a powerful headache that often happens with nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light. Migraines can last from 4 hours to 3 days, and sometimes longer.Most people start having migraine headaches between ages 10 and 40. But many women find that their migraines improve or disappear after age 50.</span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Référence : webmd.com, </span></i><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">https://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/migraines-headaches-migraines#1</span></i><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">  consulted on july 4</span></i><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">th</span></i><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">,2019.</span></i>
" >migraine [1]. 50% of people with migraine mention weather as a trigger. But what is the weather about? Heat? Cold? Barometric pressure? Pollution surges? The world of migraine triggers [2] is a jungle. The list is endless. Triggers vary from one person to the other, and they combine and add up, making them difficult to track with precision. 

If you want to use an App designed to observe triggers, we suggest N-1 Curelator [3]. To read more about triggers in general, click here [4]

Why would the weather influence migraine? 

Yes, our bodies and brains are influenced by the weather in different ways. 

What about chinooks? 

During a chinook, a hot wind blows, the temperature rises, snow may melt. One study was done in Alberta, where chinooks occur frequently during the winter.

The study found that though 80% of participants believed that their migraines were associated with Chinooks, but only 20% were reliably sensitive based on analysis of their diaries and Meteo Canada data. An overestimation of a trigger (many believe they are triggered but the association is not proven by  statistics) has been observed for others triggers such as menstrual cycles and chocolate. 

If I am truly a living barometer, how can I manage my chinook migraines? 

At present time, there is no specific action plan for weather-triggered migraines. Decreasing your trigger load, planning for some buffer time to rest, keeping acute medications ready are all typical tips for at risk periods. 

Did you know that overestimating the weather as a trigger can be harmful? 

If you suffer from frequent migraines, the trigger search is difficult as many factors can be observed every day. The weather does vary a lot… and you have no control over it.

Seeing weather changes as potential triggers that cannot be avoided can raise anxiety significantly and…trigger more migraines. Like any trigger, observe for a while, take action if feasible, but try not to engage in the vicious circle of anxiety (we know it’s not easy to do). 

REFERENCES 

Cooke LJ, Rose MS, Becker WJ. Chinook winds and migraine headache. Neurology. 2000;54(2):302-7.

Kelman L. The triggers or precipitants of the acute migraine attack. Cephalalgia. 2007;27(5):394-402.

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