Can Seasonal Allergies Cause Migraine Headaches?

The Curious Connection Between Migraines and Seasonal Allergies

If you have allergies, then you know they are usually the worst during the months of the late summer and through the fall. That means allergy season is right around the corner. To make matters worse, experts are saying that Texas can expect a more severe spring allergy season than usual. This could be due to the deep freeze that the state saw in February. The extreme weather conditions pushed the release of tree pollen closer to the start of grass pollen season, which means there are more allergens in the air.

Allergic conditions are one of the most common health issues that affect individuals in the U.S., particularly children. In 2018, 7.7% of adults and 7.2% of children were diagnosed with hay fever, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Hay fever, also called allergic rhinitis, causes cold-like signs and symptoms, like a runny nose, itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing, and sinus pressure. Allergic rhinitis causes inflammation and nasal congestion, which can activate the trigeminal nerve that is responsible for providing sensation to the face.

What some people do not know is that seasonal allergies can also lead to migraines, as can dramatic changes in weather. This puts the people of Texas in a particularly tough spot this season. One study conducted by Allergy & Asthma Care PA found that 34% of migraine sufferers also had seasonal allergies, and patients with allergies were over 14 times more likely to suffer from migraines as well. Many of the symptoms of allergies and symptoms of migraines are similar. They affect the same body parts, like the forehead, nose, areas in between, and around the eyes.

Because there is an overlap in symptoms between migraines and allergies, it can be difficult to identify the exact underlying cause. In fact, a study from Scottsdale Headache Center at Arizona Neurological Institute found that the majority of patients who had self-diagnosed with sinus headaches were actually suffering with migraines. Another study from the Headache Care Center in Springfield found that 88% of patients who thought they had sinus headaches actually had a migraine. As you can see, when it comes to diagnosing migraines and allergies, the lines can be a bit blurry. However, treating your allergies can prevent migraines, and preventing your migraines can make your overall symptoms less severe.

What Are the Most Effective Treatments for Migraines?

When treating migraines, the goal will be to stop symptoms and prevent future occurrences. There are two types of approaches that can be used to treat migraines: pain-relieving medications and preventative medications. If you are using medications that relieve migraine pain when it is already there, it is best to do so at the first sign of a migraine. If your migraine is too severe to be treated with over-the-counter pain medications, or you are intolerant to those options, we recommend visiting your doctor for a customized treatment plan.

Botox Injections for Migraines

If you have a history of suffering from migraines and would like to look into preventative measures, you might consider Botox ® injections. This might not be the first treatment you think of when you think about migraine treatment, but it can be quite effective. Novopelle Med Spa is happy to offer Botox for patients who are in good health.

Botox is an effective way to treat migraine headaches because it blocks chemicals and neurotransmitters that carry pain signals from the brain. Botox is able to stop the chemicals before they reach the nerve endings around the head and neck. Botox can be injected in seven specific muscle areas around the head and neck to prevent migraines before they start. Popular places to receive Botox for migraine treatment are the forehead, bridge of the nose, temples, neck, back of the head, and above the shoulder blades in the upper back.

A new study published in the American Journal of Managed Care has shown that long-term treatment with onabotulinumtoxin A, the active ingredient in Botox, yields a response rate of 65% after three courses of treatments in patients with chronic migraines. The results of Botox generally last between three and four months, but some patients are able to see the benefits for six months or longer. The effects of Botox wear off as the neurotoxin wears off, which allows the nerves to regain their ability to send signals to the muscles that allow them to begin working.

What to Do After Botox

Tips and Best Practices for Aftercare

After you receive Botox, whether it be for migraine prevention or cosmetic purposes, there are some steps you can take to ensure its benefits last as long as possible. Some ways you can make your recovery process easier include:

  • Taking it easy for the day

After receiving Botox treatments, experts do not recommend lying down for at least four hours. Relaxing will prevent any extra swelling from occurring. It will also prevent the material from migrating to other areas of the face, which can lead to muscle weakness in those areas. While Botox is generally a noninvasive treatment, you will be slightly sore after receiving the first treatment. Therefore, it is not recommended to exercise intensely for the day following Botox.

  • Avoiding extra pressure on the injection site

We do not recommend touching the injection site with your hands or adding extra pressure to the site for at least four hours after the treatment. Even minimal amounts of pressure could encourage the material to migrate away from the site of injection. Avoiding touching the area will also prevent sensitivity and pain.

How to Make Botox Last Longer

If you want to make your Botox last longer and allow the cosmetic or preventative effects to last as long as possible, it is essential to protect your skin from the sun. Harmful UVA and UVB rays from the sun are some of the most damaging pollutants that your skin comes into contact with. UV exposure will shorten the lifespan of the neurotoxin. To protect your skin from harmful UV rays, use sunscreen every day even if it is cloudy. Experts recommend using sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, which should block 97% of the sun’s UVB rays. Apply at least one ounce of sunscreen at least 15 to 30 minutes before sun exposure and reapply every two hours.

Another way to make Botox last longer is to make sure the skin at the injection site is hydrated. Specifically, hyaluronic acid can keep inflammation down in the skin and decrease the speed at which the body breaks down proteins.  Antioxidant serums are also a helpful way to elongate the effects of Botox. Topical antioxidants like vitamin C will protect the skin from damage and pollution.

Most importantly, if you are too concerned with the effects of your Botox, it is important to stop worrying! Stress can actually cause Botox to deteriorate quicker, so it is time to kiss your worries goodbye if you want to experience the full cosmetic and migraine relieving effects. It might also relax you to know that at Novopelle Med Spa, you are in the hands of trustworthy professionals who truly care about producing the results you deserve. We bring over ten years of experience to the table, offering cutting-edge, noninvasive cosmetic procedures in a modern and welcoming environment. Our med spa is physician-supervised, which means you can trust us to deliver the experience you expect and the treatments you need.

To learn more about the benefits of Botox and other treatments at Novopelle Med Spa, give us a call at (888) 429-7055 or contact us online. Whether your needs are cosmetic or preventative, we look forward to delivering the cutting-edge treatment you deserve.