Migraine triggers

If you have migraines the number of possible triggers is inumerable. The triggers for migraine are highly individual from person to person. Identifying your triggers isnt a cure but it can be great for your quality of life. Keeping a food diary can be one excellent step towards identifying your migraine triggers, sometimes triggers can go undetected in the wide spectrum of foods we have access to.

Here is a relatively short list of the more common migraine triggers to consider and look out for.

Lifestyle triggers:

  • Poor-quality sleep 
  • Prone sleeping (face down)
  • Poor posture
  • Stressful work environment
  • Excessive screen time
  • Binge drinking 
  • Jet lag
  • Strenuous exercise
  • Neck or shoulder tension
  • Excessive tiredness
  • Dehydration

Dietary triggers:

  • Alcohol consumption
  • Missed, delayed or irregular meal times
  • Caffeinated drinks 
  • The infamous migraine foods, such as chocolate, reduced  wine, dairy and citrus.
  • Foods containing tyramine – examples include cured meats, pickled fish, smoked fish, and certain cheeses.

Environmental triggers:

  • Bright lights 
  • Smoking or smokey envirnoments
  • Loud noises 
  • Changes in temperature and humidity
  • Strong smells 
  • Flickering lights or  screens

Medicines:

  • Sleeping tablets 
  • Contraceptive pill
  • Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)

If you are able to identify your migraine triggers successfully it usually then becomes a practical question of how avoidable the triggers are for you personally. Both life-style requirements (like needing to make money sitting in front of a screen) and addictions (like alcohol and chocolate) can make trigger avoidance difficult in some cases.

The only risk in managing your migraine through trigger avoidance alone is that you end up eroding your emjoyment, freedom and choices in life. The benefit of identifying the triggers is that you can reduce your migraine attacks, hopefully while you figure out how to get a deeper resolution of your migraines underlying physical imbalances. Many people find that their triggers are no longer triggers once their biomechanical, postural and emotional issues are in check.