Triggers from a Migraine Sufferer

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I had my first migraine at 17 years old. In and out of the hospital for 5 days, we realized that there’s nothing neurologically wrong but I was going to struggle with chronic migraines. I’ve spent seven years trying to figure out what triggers migraines and though I can’t predict them precisely – I’ve gotten pretty good at figuring out what triggers my migraines.

My Seasonal Allergies

Seasonal allergies have been killing me twice a year for most of my adult life. Usually, having a stock of sinus relief is all I need to get through those times. Having allergies, however, does trigger a lot of migraines for me. The added pressure behind my eyes and nose can spiral into a really painful migraine sometimes. 

I have a blog about how to deal with seasonal allergies that are less than glorious. For me, the biggest thing is taking care of my eyes in these moments. I use a clarifying spray on my lashes and lids (you can get it here) and I wear my glasses to make sure it doesn’t add to it!

Bright Lights (in the big city!!)

Most people that I’ve talked to with migraine issues have sensitivity to light. It’s kind of like when you’re super hungover and any amount of light hurts. That’s the closest thing I can compare to light sensitivity in the time of migraine. It’s also difficult to be in rooms with a lot of blue light. Phones, TVs, and laptops stay off.

Lack of Water/Too Much Alcohol

In my adult years, I’ve started to make a vodka water my drink of choice. It does the trick while being the most hydration you can get in a mixed drink. Call it not being able to hang or that I’m a lightweight but binge drinking definitely does a different number on me than it once did. A lot of alcohol consumption, too much caffeine, or not enough water really does a number on me. It’s not instant, but after too many days of not treating my body right… I can pretty much count on a migraine. 


I’m a busy bee and I have a really bad habit of overworking myself. My plate is always full because I thrive on it being that way. There are moments, however, where I shouldn’t have loaded my plate quite as full. Stress is definitely a trigger for migraines. I discovered it when I was in my college days and studying for a week full of finals. Let’s just say the migraines were plentiful.

Lack of Sleep

We need to deconstruct burnout culture as soon as humanly possible. The narrative that we’re all supposed to work 70 hours a week, have student loan debt, and “sleep when you’re dead” is dangerous. Adults aren’t much different than children in the fact that we need full nights of sleep to function at our highest capabilities. If I get a couple nights of really bad sleep, I can pretty much count on having at least a headache.

Migraine Sufferers: I Got You!

In the years since I got my first migraine, I’ve developed some ways to combat them when they do flare up. Please remember that I’m not a doctor and have no idea if there’s any science behind these “emyd approved” remedies. They simply help me!

Migraine helmet – My best friend, Sydney, sent me a Tik Tok raving about a cap that puts pressure in all the right spot when you’re sleeping. It’s available on Amazon and I could not recommend anything more.

Vitamin C/Multivitamin – Keep your body in tip top shape even when you’re not feeding it the best things or getting enough sleep. I’ve started doing an Emergen-C every so often that makes me feel like Superwoman!

Benadryl – When you go to the ER for a migraine, they will give you Benadryl in your migraine cocktail to ease tension and relax your muscles. Obviously, check with a doc before you take this recommendation. But, I’ve started carrying them on me everywhere I go.

Do you also suffer from migraines? I’d love to hear about your triggers and remedies you’ve found for them. Tell me on my socials below!

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