I was a child when I started experiencing migraines. I remember the auras as if they were shards of light coming from street lamps and stretching right across the night sky. While beautiful, they were the precursor to a horrible headache that would banish me to a dark room in search of relief. What causes migraines is still up for debate, but the triggers can be different for anyone who suffers from them. So, I asked 12 people to reveal the weird things that trigger their migraines. To no surprise, the results show just how different and varied everyone's experience can be.
Now that I'm an adult I've managed to control my symptoms, so I (thankfully) only suffer a migraine attack a few times every year. My own triggers include reading when in motion, like in a car or on a bus, not getting enough sleep, or being thirsty. Now that I know what can bring on a migraine, I'm diligent to avoid those triggers so I can sidestep the entire painful, often debilitating ordeal.
If you suffer from migraine headaches, it makes sense to keep a diary of your symptoms so you can attempt to correctly identify your personal triggers. After all, if you can pinpoint the foods, sights, and smells that precede an attack, you're one step closer to minimizing the frequency and severity of your migraines. With that in mind, here are some of the more bizarre triggers that give the following people those horrible things called migraines:
"Sun on snow is the worst for me, and I work at a ski resort for four months out of the year. I have to wear goggles most of the time."
"Chocolate is a trigger for me, which is a real-life tragedy."
"Unfortunately sex seems to bring on my migraines. It's like too much stimulation or something, but you know what? Sometimes it's worth it."
"My husband's cologne was a huge migraine trigger for me. I started buying him more neutral scents and hiding the heavy stuff."
"I can't listen to talk radio in the car. Music is OK, but not any sort of discussion."
"I cant bear the smell of bacon cooking. I actually used to really like eating it, but it started to cause migraines and now just the smell can bring one on. I have to avoid it like the plague."
"I have a lot of allergies, especially to pet dander, but if I am around cats for too long my symptoms morph into a full-on migraine attack. I could never own a cat."
"My wife thought I was [lying] but the smell of our baby's diapers always ended in a migraine. I can't deal. I'll do other things, but changing poop-filled diapers are a no go for me. Doctors orders!"
"Loud music is one of my migraine triggers. My friends are always inviting me to gigs and concerts but I can't go. I would last five minutes and then have to go home with a headache."
"I can't eat cheese anymore, because it always causes an attack for me. I dream about brie."
"If I don't eat for a few hours I always get a migraine. I can't let my blood sugar dip at all."
"I cannot go to a public pool. The smell of the chlorine affects me straight away. Salt water pools are fine, so it's definitely the chlorine."