So Many Of Our Patients Are Plagued By Headaches during their menstrual periods. These headaches can be debilitating and are usually related to changing levels of estrogens that occur each month. Let us give you some suggestions that can relieve these hormonal headaches.
Entice the endorphins
If you exercise you can reduce the risk of menstrual migraines. This can be as easy as walking, jogging, biking, or swimming. These exercises increase the release of endorphins, which are nature’s most powerful pain relievers even more powerful than morphine.
Eliminate food triggers
The most common triggers are aged cheeses, processed meats with nitrites, chocolate, excessive caffeine, alcohol (especially red wine), citrus fruits, bananas, onions, and foods containing MSG.
Have a routine
Don’t skip meals, sleeping late on weekends, or any changes in your usual schedule can lead to menstrual headaches.
Rest and relax leads to relief
Yoga, meditation, or biofeedback teaches you how to control the muscle contractions and swelling of the blood vessels around your brain.
Put a little magnesium in your diet
We suggest 400-600 mg of chelated magnesium a day.
At the first sing of a headache take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Also over the counter aspirin and acetaminophen may be helpful. If you know the day you are going to experience a headache, take a pain reliever two days before your anticipate your headache.
It may be helpful to increase your estrogen levels by taking 1mg of estrogen (17 beta-estradiol) twice a day7 2-3 days prior to your period and continue for 2-3 days during your period.
This is the latest and best medication according to headache experts. Triptans, such as Imitrex, Maxalt, Zomig, stop the pain within hours after the pain starts and you can start the medication at the first sign of a migraine.
Bottom Line: Menstrual migraines are very common and can be debilitating for women who have these monthly headaches. Most of these headaches can be controlled by without medications but if the headaches are severe, speak to your doctor and he\she can help with medication.
for more information on pelvic pain, triggers of hormonal headaches, and menopause, please see our book, What’s Going On Down There-Improve Your Pelvic Health, available from Amazon.com
Book on Pelvic Health By Drs. Siddighi and Baum