Medicine for Headaches during Pregnancy: Dos and Don’ts

Medicine for Headaches

Medicine for Headaches

You may reach a point in your pregnancy whereby it may be absolutely necessary to take medication- either medicine for headaches or medicine for you morning sickness, for seizures, for diabetes, for heartburn… etc. The list is almost inexhaustible considering the many problems that arise during the pregnancy period. Headaches especially seem to keep recurring during the pregnancy stage and especially during the first trimester. Some headaches may go untreated without needing medicine for headaches but in some cases, it would be advisable to consult a medical practitioner on the suitable medicine.

Remedying Pregnancy Headaches: Dos

There are preventive measures that one could take to eliminate the need to result to medicine for headaches during pregnancy, but when prevention fails, there are several measures you should follow when it comes to medication for headaches.

  • Do keep track of your headaches. Note down in a special book the patterns of your headaches in regards to their occurrence and other such details. This will aid the physician in deciding the best medicine for headaches in your case and it might also reveal the triggers for you headaches.
  • Do alert your obstetrician or physician when your notice irregularities in your headaches such as:

o   Change in location of occurrence of the headaches

o   Dizziness

o   Increased pain intensity

o   Persistence of the headache

o   Visual disturbances

o   Scotoma (blind spots)

  • Do alert your physician if your headache is accompanied by other symptoms such as:

o   Swollen hands and feet

o   Sharp upper right abdominal pain

o   Fever

o   Slurred speech

o   Sudden weight gain

The above could be indicative of the onset of preeclampsia, which essentially leads to eclampsia.

  • Do alert your doctor prior to resulting to any kind or medication be it prescribed or over the countermedicine.
  • Do try some natural home remedies such as using hot and cold packs before deciding on medicine for headaches.
  • Do keep a record of medications you may have taken even before you got pregnant. If you are expectant, this is even more beneficial.
  • Do keep abreast with the registries of pregnancy medication. This will even help you in providing feedback and asking questions you might need clarified.
  • Do steer clear of aspirin and ipobrufen. They may be the preferred medicine for headaches but not when you are pregnant.
  • Do use aromatherapy in place of medication.
  • Do know the exact type of headache you may be suffering from: is it a migraine, sinus headache, tension headache or cluster headaches? This will go a long way in determining your form of medication.

Remedying Pregnancy Headaches: Don’ts

As for the don’ts:

  • Do not self-medicate even with Tylenol, which is considered a fairly safe medicine for headaches during pregnancy. An overdose of the acetaminophen cold lead to kidney and liver damage so moderate intake is key.
  • Do not resort to using herbs as medicine for headaches unless you have discussed it with your doctor. Chamomile tea is recommended but make sure you ask your healthcare provider first. Butterbur and feverfew are herbs highly discouraged during pregnancy.
  • Do not share medicine even with a fellow expectant mother. All bodes react differently and so one woman’s cure may be another’s death trap.
  • Do not exploit aromatherapy. You should not use more than 3 drops of peppermint or lavender oil at once; and even then, you should resort to aromatherapy very occasionally and only after consulting your physician.
  • Avoid foods that are headache triggers. These are:

o   Caffeine

o   Chocolate

o   The sweetener Aspartame

o   Foods with monosodium glutamate and nitrate – both used as preservatives.

Alleviating Pregnancy Headaches without Using Medicine for Headaches

One common practice among pregnant women is to attempt treating headaches without ingesting medicine. This approach is normally advised as it is considered relatively safe, provided you are not using any herbs or other such means.

a) Heat pads placed on the temples, nose or eye area may relieve migraines and sinus headaches.

b) A gentle massage around the neck and shoulders will stop tension headaches.

c) A cold pack places at the back of the neck could also be used to fight tension headaches.

d) Retreating in a quiet room and lying down with your eyes closed will help with the migraines.

e) Closing and opening the fists continuously while the hands are soaked in cold water will help with headaches by dilating the blood vessels and easing blood congestion in the head.

f) For the same purpose of easing blood congestion in the head, soaking feet in warm water will aloe do the trick.

g) Acupuncture could also be used to alleviate headaches during pregnancy all without the use of medicine for headaches.

h) Acupressure of the neck, feet, forehead and hand could work as well; provided it is performed by a professional in that field.

i) Homeopathy is also another option eliminating the need for medicine for headaches.

Continue reading Safe Medicine for Headaches during Pregnancy