PHOENIX — Rumor has it, that after heavy rains and monsoon activity hit, the headaches do too.
We spoke to a local doctor, Natasha Bhuyan, who says that nagging pressure you feel in your head is brought on by the change in atmospheric pressure we experience this time of year.
We see plenty of rain, lightning, dust and discomfort when storms roll in—summer storms bringing several side effects that indicate a migraine.
“People have throbbing, sharp pain, stabbing pain, even pressure on the side of their head,” she said.
Dr. Bhuyan says if you're feeling the pain post-storm, that's totally normal.
“We see what we call the monsoon migraine, so whenever there's a drop in barometric pressure we see an uptick in patients with migraine headaches,” Dr. Bhuyan added.
The monsoon activity takes over and changes the pressure in the atmosphere, causing chronic headaches for some.
“About 40 million Americans suffer from migraine headaches and half of them have said they've been triggered by weather changes,” she added.
She says, there aren't many ways to avoid the Arizona storms, but you can monitor the symptoms.
“When the dust kicks up, a lot of my patients come in they say it's really dusty, they might have some nasal congestion, pressure behind their eyes, they'll have a squeezing headache, they think they have a sinus infection; they actually just have a migraine headache,” she said.
Dr. Bhuyan says you're not crazy, the increase in complaints this time of year is common.
“If you think you have a migraine or a sinus infection, if you think it's just a tension headache, it's good to see a doctor, because the treatments are different for all of them,” she said.
So, we can verify that monsoons and migraines make the summer months that much more painful, but there are some preventative steps you can take to dodge the discomfort.
Another approach is to monitor weather reports. So you know when a storm will strike, drink plenty of water and get a good night’s sleep. That way, you can take precautions and ultimately avoid those monsoon migraines.