Types of Stress that Aggravates our Symptoms

Hi Everyone…was wondering what type of Stress can really upset & increase your Migraine like Symptoms? I went to this self-help (round table) meeting last Friday evening…about 25 people showed up and the newbies like myself was encouraged to introduce ourselves and share their story. Well…before getting to this meeting i took a bit more medication but when i arrived and sat down… the Rocking Motion intensified…i could feel the tension/squeezed like feeling in my head increase. I decided to introduce myself soon as possible …i wanted to get it out of the way. Symptoms were the worst just prior to me speaking & watching others share their story…and once i started talking things calmed down a little. Afte my share…seems like the symptoms decreased to a much more comfortable level. But talking in front of strangers in a round table like situation can really get me good! Also…if i’m really upset with someone…an intense argument…that increase the symptoms big time!

Was wondering what type of stressful situation really Rev’s up your MAV like symptoms?


Hi Joe,

First dates are a killer for me as is public speaking. Also, emotional stress will set me off (dizziness) whereas happy stress can cause more of a hangover migraine the day after (headache).


I had a dr. appointment yesterday with the primary care doctor, just an annual physical. Leading up to my appointment I got increasingly off balance, fuzzy thinking, etc. Sitting there in the waiting room I thought I was going to “jump out of my skin” but as soon as I got into the dr.'s office and sat down and started talking I was fine. After the appointment I went back to work and was much better. But today I have somewhat of a “hang over” from the MAV.
So, I would agree, anxiety does play a huge roll in this.

Hi Joe,

Nice that you have a group of some sort. Where do you live btw?

I agree with the ones listed by others above, but would definitely say work-related stress is a biggie. I don’t mean having a lot of work to do, but rather, getting yelled at by the boss, or worrying about a work review or dealing with day to day related worries is high on my list. Other things include feeling emotionally overwhelmed about something, such as a dear friend moving away and thus losing my support system. :frowning:

Best, Bonnie

Thanks Scott, Bonnie & Joan for your input.

Scott…if i’m goo goo gah gah over someone…and it’s my first date …then yes this will increase my symptoms. Public Speaking most definitely gets me nearly every time.

Bonnie…work related stress is a huge factor and i sometimes believe work stress was the Pre-Curser to MAV. But some folks tend to disagree on this. I remember when i worked for the phone company and i had dead lines and payroll to get out and i would stress out so bad and even take these negative thoughts home with me. This is not good. Now i have a job that once i’m finished with work for the day…i’m done…nothing more to worry about. I live int a suburb or California called Diamond Bar.

Joan…i could see where someone could get increasingly dizzy must minutes or hours prior to the appointment.


Stress is a big one for me, I have been really good but in the last week feel it all coming back to me.
I haven’t flown long distance for over a year , this weekend I have to fly Europe / LA and I am terrified, work is stressful , I am behind with everything , and I feel my stress crawling all over me. I am scared I will be sick like I was when I went last year.
The dizziness , wobbly legs and weird feeling all over my head and face have all turned up again after 2 months of near nothing.
Yes it is worse too if I have a fight with someone or if my adrenalin is running through me. I can feel all the MAV rushing back.
I try to control it and breath , but easier said than done. I wish I could control it.
I understand you !

Hi Joey,

As you know , stress certainly Ramps up my symptoms to an all time high.
I migraine even when I’m zen. arrrgh! :twisted:
not good.

jen from oz

Yes stress makes me feel awful as do long car journeys now. Like when Penny said you get an adrenline rush over something I feel my symptoms at their worst.
Im going to a nightclub next saturday for my friends bday I havent been out in 6 months and yes I know I will feel like crap for three days as the ligths, noise and dark play a big part in ramping up my symptoms . But I dont know how much of my life I want to dedicate to this illness anymore as if I dont go I will be really miserable but I know I will be miserable after I go too but Im tired of worrying about it every second of everyday so if I get one night of letting my hair down and be normal then Im doing it !

Good Luck Blondie !

Had nother MAV Increased Stressor today…with regarding to my job. This was the first time i had to be in a class of this type for 90 minutes (at work) and learn how to peform putting out a fire with a fire Distinguisher. Not that it was that difficult but initially i had no idea what they were going to ask us to do…so i’m sitting in the class of about 17 people and the instructor put on a video and we began going over a number of points. My mind started tensing up…motion began to increase as if inside my head was Swimming and was having difficulty paying attention so i took a bit more medication while sitting and that helped to calm me down and i could think more clearly. I got thru the class ok…the insturctor gave each of us a fire distingusher and we had to follow the steps on turning it on…as if there was a real fire. So at first glance you would think this is all Anxiety. But i soppose this is still an underlying headache of sorts and the anxiety builds and makes my Mind all fuzzy and tension builds and then i’m a train wreck.


I attribute stress as being the main trigger for kicking off the MAV in me. I’m on Effexor @ 75mg so I don’t deal with much stress…or much of anything else. Pretty much keeps me at a medium, and although I’m not really keen on this, it’s better than stressing out and unleashing symptoms. That said I’m going thru a “dip” at this time…getting some head pressure and aches. And yes, my stress level is increasing…just hope the drug hasn’t worn out its usefulness :frowning:

Mitch…do you ever have this Swimming Sensation in the head. You know what it’s like to be in a swimming pool…standing up. When the little waves are moving around…that is what it sometimes feels like in my head. The more stressful i become…the more increased swimming/wavelike feeling in my head acts up.


Stress is a HUGE trigger for me for both my migraines and my meniere’s. I lost my spouse last year so all of the firsts I’ve had to go through without him have laid me up in bed for two and three days at a time, not from depression, but from symptoms.

Having to talk to someone new on the phone is a stress trigger for me (I even hate doing things like ordering pizza)

Another one is dealing with arguments in my family (Why am I the family go to girl to straighten things out… i don’t know but I am)

And really just stupid things like having to go to wal-mart when it is crowded. I get this fear I’ll have an attack and fall or something equally dumb and get laughed at.

I’m 28, i don’t look sick so people treating me like I should be working etc stresses me too. I have a full-time job taking care of my room mate and running the household from laundry to cooking. But when I feel bad I can lie down whereas I couldn’t on a job. So yeah I’m rambling sorry.

It may sound a little perverse, but I’m glad for those of you whose experience is stable enough to make it clear that stressors have particular effects on your symptoms. I was in pretty stable shape for quite a while, but just slid off the edge, so to speak, into being symptomatic. Unfortunately, I have no way to know as yet whether this was in response to a medication change (most likely hypothesis), to work stresses (book deadline, sort of thing), or even worry about how I’d handle my eating on an out-of-town trip for a family wedding this weekend–which we had to miss, because of my flare-up.