Menstrual Migraine Treatment, Period and Headache!

Of the individuals who suffer migraine, about seventy percent are females. And of these females, about 60 to 70 percent of them are experiencing migraine while having their menstrual cycle or during pre-menstrual periods. Migraines that are associated with the females’ menstrual cycle are referred to as menstrual migraine. Women do not necessarily need to suffer and endure such as there are methods for menstrual migraine headache treatment.

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Headaches and Hormones

First, one should understand the connection between reoccurring headaches in women and their menstrual period. The headaches that women feel, specifically menstrual migraines, are related to the hormonal level changes in the body during their menstrual cycle. The levels of estrogen drop dramatically before the beginning of menstrual flow. The premenstrual migraines commonly happen right after when the hormonal levels of progesterone and estrogen drops to its lowest levels.

The attack of migraines sometimes disappears when one is pregnant. In one of the studies conducted, about 64 percent of women who related their migraine to their menstrual flow attested that the migraines disappeared when they got pregnant. Although some of the women noted the first onset of migraines during first 3 months of their pregnancy, and then followed by its disappearance during the 3rd month.

The triggers of hormonal migraines

Therapy by hormonal replacement at menopausal stages and birth control pills are recognized as triggers for migraine with some women. In the early studies in year 1966, investigations noted migraines become harsher with women who are taking birth control pills, particularly those that contain estrogen at high doses. The frequency is lowered when women have taken birth control pills that contain estrogen at lower doses. Headaches do not occur with women taking birth control pills that contain progesterone.


One of the choices women make when stopping menstrual migraine is by taking medications of NSAIDs or known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications. These medications include:

* Relafen

* Motrin and Advil

* Orudis

* Naprosyn

* Nalfon

The menstrual migraine treatment using NSAID should start 2 – 3 days right before menstrual flow and the medication should continue until the menstrual flow is completed. The therapy is of short duration, and it also limits the risks of the side effects of gastroenteritis.

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To women who have severe migraines but want to continue on taking birth control pills, doctors recommend them to take NSAID which should begin at the 19th day of the cycle then continue to the 2nd day of the next cycle.

Here are some prescription-only medications that are used in menstrual migraine treatment:

* Anticonvulsants like valproate or depakote

* Blockers of calcium channel like verapamil

* Drugs for beta-blocker like propranolol

* Small doses of drugs ergotamine which includes Migranal, Cafergot and Bellergal-S

The drugs aforementioned should also start between 2 – 3 days before menstrual flow then continued until the menstrual flow is completed.

Since some cases associate fluid retention to the menstruation of women, they use diuretics in order to prevent migraines. Some doctors recommend limiting salt consumption right before the beginning of menstrual flow.

The drug Lupron affects the hormonal levels of women and only used when other attempts of menstrual migraine treatment proves unsuccessful.


There are other menstrual migraine treatment options which do not involve any drugs. Here are some things that which women can do for menstrual migraine treatment.

* Skipping meals should be avoided. This is because low sugar levels and hunger trigger menstrual migraine.

* Eat meals at the right time and make sure they are well-balanced and nutritious.

* To keep you hydrated, drink lots of fluid. The norm is at least ten glasses of water. The more fluid intake, the better.

* Avoid eating foods with too much carbohydrates and sweets. As this could lead to carbohydrate crash, wherein the sugar level drops abruptly two to three hours after consumption of the carbohydrate-rich foods.

* Try learning alternate techniques of relaxation as they have no side effects like headache and they have shown good results in different clinical studies.

* Keep a good regulated sleep. Keep out things or other factors that will interrupt your sleep in the middle of the night. Avoid at all costs erratic sleeping schedule or sleeping late.

* Exercise has many benefits for the body. It is not just an activity for those who want to target a certain body shape, but to keep the body healthy inside. When you have not done any exercises or have not engaged in it for a while, do not attempt heavy exercises. Discuss with a health instructor or your doctor which exercises are best suited for your condition.

* Foods containing high salt levels can trigger menstrual migraines as well. Alcoholic drinks such as beer and wine, aged cheeses such as cheddar and chocolates can also trigger menstrual migraine. Avoid especially during the menstrual period.

Menstrual migraine is quite common among women. There is no need to suffer, though, as there are menstrual migraine treatment methods you can do to prevent debilitating headaches especially during that time of the month.  Read more about migraine symptoms and treatment

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