It turns out cis-hets really are too headache.
Lesbians, gays, and bisexuals are significantly more likely to experience migraine headaches than their heterosexual peers, according to a new study. Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco surveyed some 10,000 Americans ages 31–42 about their health and wellness between 2016 and 2018. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that one in six U.S. adults suffer from migraines, a whopping one in three LGB-identified respondents reported experiencing the painful, often debilitating headaches. That’s an increased likelihood of more than 50%.
“Lesbian, gay or bisexual individuals were 58% more likely to experience a migraine compared to heterosexual individuals,” lead author Dr. Jason Nagata, an assistant professor at UCSF, told MedicalXpress. “We also found that individuals who identified as mostly heterosexual but with some same-sex attractions were more likely to experience a migraine, compared to those who identified as exclusively heterosexual.”
Researchers weren’t able to identify exactly why migraine rates are higher among queer people. (The study also didn’t examine how frequently trans or gender nonconforming adults experience migraines.)
However, Nagata does suspect that the double-whammy of stress and homophobic discrimination LGB people face in their daily lives could explain the correlation, at least in part.
“There might be a higher rate of migraines in LGB people because of discrimination, stigma, or prejudice, which may lead to stress and trigger a migraine,” the professor told Reuters.
So, if being queer sometimes feels like carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders, you’re not alone. Congrats—or, uh, I’m sorry?