Terrible Headaches

QUESTION

Dear Nutritionist,
Hello, I am 25 weeks pregnant and have terrible headaches usually daily. I had them in my first trimester, but they have gotten much worse. Usually they are there when I wake up in the morning and last all day, but sometimes they don't start until around noon.

I have been on bed rest for the past 6 weeks and will have to be on it until the baby arrives.

I drink plenty of water 8-10 glasses a day. I have always drank a minimum of 8 glasses a day. Could I be needing more than that because I am accustomed to drinking that much?

I eat healthy and every 2 hours minimum. I am not able to exercise much being on bed rest, but I do a few arm exercises and ankle rolls. I also work on my laptop pretty much all day and often wonder if this could be the cause?

I am normal weight with normal blood pressure. I have asked my doctor, but she just says take Tylenol, but the few times I have it does not help any way and I would prefer not to take medication.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you,
Melissa

ANSWER

There are many problems that can cause headaches during pregnancy. They could be due to hormonal issues, stress, dehydration, etc... They could be more then headaches and be of a migraine nature, which would explain why Tylenol wouldn't help. Only your doctor can pinpoint the reasons for your headaches.

You might need more water though it sounds like you are getting what you need. Your needs are a bit higher during pregnancy though. It could be from sitting in bed and maybe even the way you hold your neck and shoulders while working on your laptop. With your doctor's OK you might want to try a neck massage, heat, etc... for your neck to see if that helps. Sounds like you are eating healthy and eating on a regular basis so that doesn't seem to be the problem.

If they continue I would most definitely press your doctor to discuss this further so that you can find what the cause is and what the best treatment would be for you.

-- Kimberly, RD LD

Kimberly Tessmer

Kimberly A. Tessmer, RD LD has been a registered dietitian since 1992 and is also an Ohio licensed Dietitian. Her educational achievements include a Bachelor of Science in Technology (Dietetics) from Bowling State University in Bowling Green, OH. She currently owns and operates a consulting business called "Nutrition Focus" www.nutrifocus.net, in which she specializes and offers services in the areas of weight management, general nutrition, authoring, menu development and a variety of other services.

To date Kim has authored three books including "The Everything® Nutrition Book", "Tell Me What To Eat If I Have Celiac Disease", and "The Everything® Pregnancy Nutrition Book". In addition, Kim has written numerous articles for various health/nutrition web sites and magazines including Bally Total Fitness Magazine, Well and Healthy Women Magazine and Healthology.com, Inc as well as continuing education courses for www.care2learn.com. She is a member of the American Dietetic Association and the ADA Practice Group, Nutrition Entrepreneurs.