Strange reason you might have a headache right now – and how to treat it

By Staff

If you’ve found yourself getting a headache leading up to this weekend, there could be a scientific reason behind it – and it’s all to do with how pressure impacts your nerves

If you’ve found yourself suffering from a headache recently, there’s a good reason for it – and there are things you can do to help.

It’s been a wet start to Sunday as Brits across several parts of the country, including central and eastern England, have seen a cold front bring heavy rain. And if you’re found yourself with a blaring headache over the last couple of days, it turns out this could be the cause.

When you’re someone who comes down with a bad headache, just before impending weather changes such as a heavy rain downpour or a storm, you might have had family members or friends joke that you’re psychic – or that you’re putting it on to be dramatic.

But it turns out headaches caused by weather changes are a real thing, so you can tell them you’re not bad – and that it’s all to do with the pressure in the atmosphere.

The NHS lists “bad weather” as one of 10 possible triggers for headaches, and states on their website that pressure changes can “irritate” your nerves and cause a headache.

The website reads: “If you’re prone to getting headaches, you could find that grey skies, high humidity, rising temperatures and storms can all bring on head pain. Pressure changes that cause weather changes are thought to trigger chemical and electrical changes in the brain. This irritates nerves, leading to a headache.”

However, the NHS isn’t hugely helpful when it comes to a solution for this type of headache, as it suggests you simply check the weather forecast so that you can be prepared for any potential head pain. They added: “There’s not much you can do to change the weather. However, by looking at the forecast, you can predict when you’re likely to have a headache and make sure you have some painkillers ready for when you might need them.”

Meanwhile, a group of scientists who looked into thunderstorm headaches previously studied more than 7,000 patients diagnosed with headaches in one medical centre in Boston between the years 2000 and 2007, according to Scientific American.

At the same time, they also scoured National Weather Service data to monitor fluctuations in temperature, humidity and barometric pressure within 72 hours of each patient’s visit. As well as finding that an increase in temperature increased the chances of getting a headache, they also discovered that headache risk increased by an average of 6% with every 5-millimetre drop in barometric pressure that occurred.

Low barometric pressure can cause headaches by creating a difference in pressure between your sinuses – which are filled with air – and the surrounding atmosphere.

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