Smells and Migraines: Helpful or Hurtful? (Part 1)

September 23, 2019


There are certain smells that can increase the severity of a migraine attack and others that can even trigger migraines. Today let’s take a closer look at what these odors are.


People who have an intolerance to smells during migraine attacks are diagnosed with a phenomenon known as osmophobia. About 50% of those who suffer from migraines have osmophobia.


It is possible that any of these scents may be triggering your migraines:
- Perfume
- Cigarette smoke
- Food odors
- Nail polish
- Cleaning products
- Car exhaust
- Paint
- Detergent
- Carpeting

These smells are likely to trigger a migraine if you breathe them in for more than 15 minutes or are in an enclosed space. These are also scents that become unbearable during the times you may be experiencing a migraine.


It is a good idea to avoid these odors for a long period of time in general. They may be the underlying, hidden reason behind your migraines.


If you begin to experience any symptoms such as moodiness, dizziness, or fatigue, these are often the beginning symptoms of a migraine attack, and there is a good chance that a certain smell is triggering them.


However, there are also smells that are proven to treat migraines and calm its victims. Stay tuned for next week’s blog post to learn about scents that can ease your headache pain!



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