Menstrual Migraines and Their Monthly Cycle

Menstrual migraines are a painful and distressing aspect of many women’s monthly menstrual cycle. Menstruation is a natural occurrence of shifting hormones and emotions that occurs cyclically for women who reach menarche in their youth and stops when women reach menopause in their older years.

Menstrual Migraines & Monthly Cycle Period

"menstrual migraines"

Sixty percent of women who suffer from migraines believe they are caused by menstruation. In addition, women are three times as likely as males to suffer from migraines. The only time women get a break from migraines is during pregnancy when menstruation stops for a while.

New research shows a link between hormone release and an increase in migraine symptoms. The journal “Headache” highlights these hormone shifts as the start of a study series into the intricate ideas surrounding menstruation, ovarian hormones, and migraines. According to the text, migraine episodes can occur both before and after the monthly cycle period. Migraines are classified as either having or not having auras.

Menstrual Migraines Headache Types

monthly cycle period

Without auras, both men and women suffer from headaches. That can be localized to a specific location of the head or widespread and can last anywhere from four hours to three days. Women are more likely to get longer-lasting headaches that aren’t necessarily related to menstruation.

Migraines accompanied by auras are more severe. When suffering from Auras migraines, many people seek medical attention. Auras are most commonly visible and might seem like brilliant colors around the outside visual field. Headaches with auras are less severe and last less time than headaches without auras.

Menstrual Migraines and Hormones


The neurological consequences of migraines, whether aura or non-aura generating, in females may be induced by the release of the hormones estrogen and progesterone during menstruation by the two female ovaries.

This discharge is the consequence of a women’s monthly cycle in response to hormones in the brain. Ovarian hormones flow through the female body’s bloodstream and can enter the brain via a physical component known as the blood-brain barrier, owing to their far-reaching effects. This is where the migraine occurs in the central nervous system and adjacent regions of the brain.

For estrogen and progesterone to impact the regions of the brain, specific “receptors” must exist, which are molecules that a hormone will connect to for it to have an action on its area of influence. Estrogen, like any medicine recommended by our doctor, has unfavorable side effects. We can reduce the severity of migraines by taking preventative medicines such as acetaminophen, aspirin, and even caffeine. There are several natural remedies for migraines during period therapies available as well. Acupuncture, hypnotherapy, and herbal treatment are examples of complementary therapies.

Menstrual Migraines Conclusion

monthly cycle of a woman

Women have a unique set of challenges when it comes to menstruation, PMS, and “menstrual migraines“. Studies are being undertaken to better understand the relationship between the menstrual cycle and migraines. Migraines are debilitating, but with the appropriate drugs, we can manage the symptoms and, perhaps, in the future, we will be able to eliminate the effects of migraines.


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