Why Do I Get Migraines?

Why do I get migraines?

The exact reason why migraines happen is still unknown. However, theories of migraine being a result of an abnormal brain operation that affect nerve signals, blood vessels and chemicals in the brain have been established. Many possible triggers for migraines have also been established and these factors are either hormonal, physical, dietary, emotional and medicinal.

High Risk for Women during Periods and Menopause

Menstrual related migraines usually happen about two days before the start of a menstrual period and three days after menstruation. However, women can still experience migraine at other times not within these spans. Many women experience improvement in their migraines after menopause. However, menopause can also be the time when migraines worsen for some women. Migraines are caused by hormones in women who suffer from excruciating migraine headache.

Emotional and Physical Triggers

Emotional triggers of migraine are depression, stress, anxiety, excitement, shock and tension while physical triggers include poor posture, jet lag, low blood sugar, strenuous exercises, poor quality of sleep and tiredness.

Foods that Cause Migraines

Foods that can start a migraine attack are caffeine filled products such as tea and coffee, citrus fruits, cheese, chocolates, alcoholic beverages and foods containing the additive tyramine.

It is important to be hydrated all the times since dehydration can cause a migraine.

Skipping meals or a delay in having meals can also trigger a migraine.

Environmental Triggers

Non-food related environmental risk factors of migraine headaches are too much exposure to the television or computer screen as well as bright lights. Loud noises, a strong odor, change in weather and a stuffy atmosphere can also trigger migraines.

Smoking and being in a smoke filled room can cause migraines.


Certain medications can also cause migraines. Antihistamines, blood pressure medications, decongestants, oral contraceptives, prescription pain medications as well as a medical procedure such as hormone replacement therapy can trigger a migraine headache.

Over-the-counter pain medication can trigger migraine. When you stop taking ibuprofen, acetaminophen and aspirin, it can also trigger migraines known as a rebound.

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