Estrogen is a sex hormone produced by men and women.
However, women produce significantly more estrogen than men as it is a crucial part of women’s reproductive system. It seems that fluctuations in estrogen specifically appear to raise the risk of migraine symptoms in many women.
If you are a female, changes in your estrogen levels might lead to experiencing more frequent or more severe migraine symptoms during times estrogen fluctuates the most, like before or on your period, after childbirth, or in the years leading up to menopause.
Oral contraceptives can also alter your body’s estrogen levels and lead to hormonal migraines. 1
How Do Hormonal Migraines Differ From Normal Migraines?
A hormonal migraine is still a migraine at its core with similar symptoms to a typical migraine. However, there are a few key differences that can help you and medical professionals diagnose a hormonal headache.
Some symptoms of hormonal headaches include:
- loss of appetite
- joint pain
- decreased urination
- lack of coordination
- constipation 2
With finding relief for hormonal migraines, time is of the essence when it comes to finding migraine relief, so the earlier you begin treating your migraine, the greater your chances of relief are. These methods can try at home to find relief:
- Stay hydrated
- Take magnesium supplement
- Lie down in a dark, quiet room
- Place an ice bag on temples, eyes, or across the forehead
- Massage the area where you feel pain
- Try stress-relieving activities
- Ditch the screens 3
For women who experience frequent hormonal headaches or acute pain, Almotriptan, Rizatriptan, or Sumatriptan might be prescribed to prevent hormonal migraines.
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