It’s often difficult to pinpoint the reason for a headache because there are many triggers. Some people have food allergies that cause headaches, while others are affected by the environment, especially during spring months. Likewise, determining the cause of a menopause headache can be tricky. The same applies to menopause migraines that can become debilitating. There are many factors that will determine whether or not you experience headaches during menopause. Below is information that can help you better understand the connection between menopause and headaches.
Basic Facts About Menopause
Menopause is a natural process that all women experience later in life. The average age at which a woman becomes menopausal is about 51. The most obvious sign of entering menopause is no longer having menstrual periods. It’s common to enter the perimenopause phase before menopause is official. During both perimenopause and menopause, it’s possible to experience headaches on a regular basis. In fact, it’s even possible to have a recurrence of migraines.
Some of the most common symptoms associated with perimenopause and menopause include hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, mood changes, thinning hair, weight gain and insomnia. These are all issues associated with hormonal changes. In fact, unbalanced hormones can cause you to have periods some months and not others, especially during perimenopause.
Menopause Headaches and Hormones
You may or may not experience a menopause headache or menopause migraines for many reasons. When in menopause, your estrogen levels are typically lower than usual. How you respond to this change will depend on your body because all women are unique and respond differently. It’s possible that you will have headaches in perimenopause but not in menopause. Some women have intense migraines in perimenopause due to the initial decline in hormone levels. The headaches tend to get worse during ovulation.
Sometimes hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is used to treat a menopause headache or menopause migraines. This may or may not be an effective solution and will need to be monitored to see how your body responds.
Diet and Lifestyle Changes to Reduce Menopause Headache
One of the best ways to mitigate the issue of a menopause headache or menopause migraines is with diet and exercise. Specifically, there are some foods and beverages that trigger headaches, such as caffeine, alcohol, chocolate, cheese and many other dairy products. Either eliminating these foods from your diet or significantly reducing your consumption can help to naturally resolve headaches and migraines.
Exercise is something that should be incorporated into your lifestyle well before headaches occur because it can decrease many symptoms associated with menopause. Exercise can be quite effective at either reducing the severity of headaches, decreasing the frequency or eliminating them altogether. This doesn’t require rigorous exercise. Instead, you can go for a short walk a few times a week to reap the benefits.
Without a doubt, a headache or migraines can be caused by menopause or exasperated by it. You’ll find that communicating with your doctor regarding the symptoms you’re having is of great value when it comes to finding the best solution. There is no one-size-fits-all answer and the right protocol can take time to find. The good news is that these symptoms don’t usually persist after menopause because hormone levels are more consistent.