Pernicious Anaemia Society
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Daily headaches

As described in a pervious post, I suffer from folate deficiency and am currently 2 and half months into my 5mg folic acid treatment. One of the more annoying symptoms I seem to suffer from is a ongoing headache.

Reading some of the posts on the forum, the headaches are nowhere near as severe as some of you other poor folks suffer from (even feel guilty writing a post about mine)...It's more like a constant faint gnawing/slight pressure behind my eyes/forehead. The headaches come on everyday, and last for the majority of the day.

It is by no means debilitating and I can get on with my day fine, but I was just wondering does anybody else suffer from this? It's just getting annoying now.

10 Replies

Hi Aaron804 I can identify with you on that.

Are you taking 5mg a day? When are you due to be re-tested?

I only ask as it seems a quite high dose.


Yeah 5mg a day.....I believe 5mg a day for 4 months is the standard treatment for sympomatic folate deficiencies (i presented with tingling in hands and feet, joint pain and tiredness).

The doctor didn't book me in to get retested, but i plan to make an appointment myself sometime during my last month of treatment.

The tingling has all but nearly gone :) Though i still do have my bad days. Plus, these ongoing bloody headaches.

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I didn't know that was the norm but I think you are wise to get it checked as and when you can.




I need methylfolate to compliment my daily SI hydroxocobalamin. When I started taking it and was low I needed 4.8 mg daily plus a total of 0.4 mg daily of folic acid in my multivitamin and mineral tablets making a total of 5.2 mg of folate.

As time went on and I became less deficient I started getting headaches too. Gambit62 kindly posted a copy of the potential side effects of high level methylfolate to me and as these included headaches, I cut my dose back. I have been able to reduce it further as I have got better and now only need 4 x 0.8 mg tablets, giving me 3.2 mg methylfolate.

A couple of times I have felt I needed a boost and have increased it slightly, only to find I have got a headache again so I think this could possibly be your problem.

400 mcg folic acid tablets are readily available from pharmacies and supermarkets and aren't expensive. 400 mcg = 0.4 mg so 12 tablets = 4.8 mg. You could try multiple tablets and see how many you can take without triggering a headache.

Good luck!

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Hey, I was just wondering how long did it take your headaches to start to dissipate? I've halted the folate treatment for the time being to see if this resolves my headaches


Hi Aaron804. Just a you suffer from dry eyes - often associated with B12 deficiency (itchy, red, gritty eyes, blurred vision, sharp stabbing pains in eyes) etc.? This can also often cause low grade persistent headaches - or even migraine.

If this sounds like you, try some hypermellose eye drops or Actimist eye spray - might help,with the headaches. Or better still, pop along to an optician who will be able to examine your eyes and advise accordingly.

If th headaches persist, you should see your GP for further investigations.

Interestingly, over supplementation with folate can have a number of side effects, one being headache (check out ) might be worth asking your GP to check your folate levels sooner rather than later (as clivealive suggests)'s a high dose if you don't need it 🙃 (If you develop insomnia, that's also a sign of over supplementation with folic acid 😣).

Good luck...hope the headaches resolve soon. Let us know how you get on.



Foggyme Hmmm, i don't often get gritty/dry eyes but i do find my eyes are slightly more blurry/foggy in the mornings. I need to blink quite a bit to see normally....but besides that don't have any other eye issues

Interestingly I've read from quite a few people on here that B12/Folate over supplementation has caused them headaches and I'm wondering if that's the case with me too...however, the headaches began intermittently before I started treatment. I'm going to carry on with my folate treatment for the time being (really don't want the tingling to return) however i've already scaled back on the B12 supplements.

Thanks for all the suggestions, I'll let you all know my progress :)

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Just to update, Decided to book a doctors appt sooner rather than later.

The way my head has been feeling it doesn't feel like it's going away anytime soon. Again, it's not intense....just noticeable, annoying and a headache shouldn't be this persistent.

I'm going to ask for another blood test to check my folate/b12 levels and take it from there


My body shows deficiency symptoms very quickly if I get slightly short of anything and yet it usually takes a day or so for the headache to dissappear.

However I would strongly recommend that you got it checked out thoroughly - many things can cause headaches and it would be good to rule out other things too.


I suffer as well and also have anemia.


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