Anyone Else Find Migraine Triggers Anxiety & Depression?

Posted , 5 users are following.

Hello all,

hope somebody can relate to this.  I've been suffering from Anxiety and Depression for about 2 years, but I'm in recovery now and most days I feel OK to normal.  However, on the day I have a migraine (and also the day after to a lesser extent) my anxiety and depression come back with a bang.  It's like a sudden dark cloud has descended on me and all my progress is instantly forgotten and I feel like I'm forever going to be depressed and anxious.  I feel like my life is unbearable.

Once the migraine goes, those feelings disappear too - just as quickly as they came.

Does anyone else get this or am I the only one?

If you do get this, do you have any tips?

TIA :0)

1 like, 10 replies

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10 Replies

  • Posted


    Yes, I find that migraines trigger depression and also the other way around too.  I get Hemiplegic Migraine and Cluster Headache and I find sometimes its a viscious circle.

    Thankfully I have good meds and other treatment that controls the sittuation.

    What have you found that works for you?

    Best wishes

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    • Posted

      Wow, sorry to hear you have cluster headaches, as if migraine isn't enough to cope with!

      Thanks for your reply.  I'm not sure that I've found anything that controls the situation.  My Anxiety and Depression seem to be getting  better.  I didn't find an anti depressant drug that didn't give me horrendous side effects and the only drug I was prescribed for Anxiety (propranolol) is what gave me depression in the first place.  I only had anxiety and migraine until I started taking that.

      I've had CBT and read lots of self help books.  I use meditation and hypnosis mp3's.  I've tried St John's Wort with limited success and a few other herbal remedies.  Tincture of Oat Straw is good for Anxiety and to help with sleep and Feverfew has made my migraines much less painful. 

      I'm trying to change my way of thinking, in line with the CBT and David Burns type of therapy.  More difficult on some days than others, but I think it's having some effect on my mood.  At the moment I'm having more good days than bad ones, but it doesn't take much for my mood to crash or the Anxiety to make an appearance, however brief.  For example, my partner said "you'll never get better" the other day and it really affected my mood, much more than it should.

      I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets this (not that I'm glad you get it, but you know what I mean).  I thought it was just me.  I feel a bit less alone now, thanks. smile

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  • Posted

    The important thing to know now, you will never be alone, you can come on here anytime and talk about whatever you want.  Dont bottle things up.  Valerian might help to relax you. 

    Have you had any tests for your migraines, like an MRI scan or blood tests.  If you have low magnesium for instance this can contribute to causing migraines as can not drinking enough water.

    Always here for support.

    Take care and best wishes

    Let us know how you get on

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    • Posted

      Thankyou :0)

      I've had a CT scan of my head, and I had a few tests at a stroke clinic because one of my migraines had symptoms similar to a mini-stroke (tia).  I've tried lots of things (inc. magnesium) but nothing seems to make much difference except the Feverfew.

      Recently I had a test for food intolerance done and they said I was intolerant to wheat and tea.  I keep a food diary and I did used to eat a lot of wheat, sometimes I'd have a migraine after a day where I ate wheat at every meal (pasta, biscuits, cake, sandwiches etc), but it's also triggered by stress (or rather my over-reaction and sensitivity to stress) and eyestrain.  Had my eyes thoroughly examined and nobody can find anything wrong with them.

      Thankfully I'm only getting between 1 and 3 per month, so it could be a lot worse.  It was really the connection to anxiety and depression that prompted me to post.  

      Thanks again for your kind comments.  You take care, too!

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  • Posted

    Hi QOTH,

    I was wondering if this was just me. I have recently realised that after every migraine I seem to have a sharp spike in my anxiety/depression for the next 3/4 days and then back down to normal. Sometimes this spike then leads back round to more migraines and back into another slump.

    I am desperately trying to find something to help rather than discussing with GP about upping meds - have you found anything that works for you?

    Best wishes smile

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    • Posted

      Hi Lozoz, sorry I didn't reply sooner, I've only just seen this.

      I haven't found anything except Feverfew that helps with the migraine, but I have found my Anxiety and Depression are responding well to CBT techniques and self help.  I've learnt to relax with guided meditations and self-hypnosis mp3's and whilst in the relaxed state I use visualisation to see myself in various situations acting and feeling very confident and happy.  Sounds a bit "new-age" but it has worked for me and I'm much calmer and less Anxious now (except for the day of and day after a migraine, which is why I made this thread!)

      CBT helped me to see it was my own dysfunctional/unhelpful thoughts that were making me feel so bad.  I'm much more positive than I used to be and don't worry about stuff I can't change.  I used to worry obsessively about every little thing, but I'm learning not to do that and it takes time to change but it works (for me, anyway).

      Herbal remedies I found effective were tincture of Oat Straw and Passiflora for Anxiety and Insomnia and St John's Wort for Depression.  I found AD drugs made me almost psychotic and I wouldn't take them again.  I'm very sensitive to drugs, so maybe that's just me.

      I'm getting into Stoic philosophy at the moment, it teaches you to accept life as it is and stop worrying about outside events. 

      There are some great self help books out there, the ones that helped me the most were Claire Weekes's "Self Help for your Nerves" and DAvid Burns's "Feeling Good", but you have to find what speaks to you as we are all different.

      I hope something I've posted will help, best of luck.

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  • Posted

    hello I am new to this group but I have been getting migraine headaches for about two years now and I inherited anxiety and depression from my mother.Anyway I would drink to control the attacks./I thought that I was just nervous all of the time.I stopped drinking because i was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver and they were talking about liver transplants and i said hell no.Any way to make a long story short,I am healthy now except for migraine headaches for two years now and they are closer together now.i'll have one for three or four days  and i take nothing but advil and lots of sleep but when i wake up,the migraine is gone but now i get really bad anxiety and depression like never before oh and now a new onset,my armpits stink i don't mean to sound gross but i have never had to wear underarm deodorant ever does anyone expierience this


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