Pregnant women undergo several changes during the 9 months of pregnancy. These changes in their bodies can cause many discomforts to them. One of the most common discomforts experienced during pregnancy is headaches.
Headaches during pregnancy generally occur in the 1st and 2nd trimesters. Pregnant women can experience headaches of different kinds and intensity which may also vary in duration. Headaches during pregnancy can be expected or sudden, short or lasting, and agonizing or throbbing.
Though headaches may be experienced at any time during pregnancy, they are most frequently experienced during the 1st and 3rd trimesters. During the first trimester there is an increase in the volume of blood in the circulatory system and the hormone levels also surge up. It is believed that these two changes in the expectant mother’s body lead to an increase in headaches during the first trimester.
Headaches during pregnancy can be further worsened by some factors such as stress, changes in the vision, and poor posture. If you are deprived of sleep or are dehydrated then it can also lead to headaches. Some other causes of headaches during pregnancy are low blood sugar i.e. hypoglycemia, tiredness, caffeine withdrawal and hormonal changes.
Different types of headaches experienced during pregnancy are migraine headaches and tension headaches. A severe excruciating pain is caused on one side of the head by migraine headaches. It seldom occurs on both the sides of your head. Migraine headaches may be accompanied with nausea and sensitivity to light or shrill noises. You can best treat your migraine headaches during pregnancy by avoiding the common factors that trigger them.
Tension headaches are very common during pregnancy. They cause a dull ache or a squeezing pain on both sides of your head or the back of the neck. Tension headaches usually occur due to depression, lack of sleep or caffeine withdrawal.
If you experience headaches during the first or second trimester you need not worry because these headaches do not indicate any complication with pregnancy. However, if you experience severe headaches during the third trimester you should be concerned about them. And if these headaches cause excruciating pain and cause blurred vision you should definitely inform your doctor. It could be a warning sign of preeclampsia i.e. high blood pressure which needs to be treated to avoid any complications.