Hormone Replacement Therapy and Migraines

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Hormone Replacement Therapy and Migraines

Women suffering from migraine headaches may be curious how hormone replacement therapy can help. Though the connection between hormonal fluctuations and migraine is complex, finding relief through medication may be key.

Menstrual cycles can cause fluctuating oestrogen levels, which in turn, may be a contributing factor to migraines. This is particularly true during perimenopause – the time in a woman’s life when her periods become irregular.

Women going through perimenopause may also experience hot flashes and night sweats, which are known to be another common factor for migraines. HRT (Hypogenic Replacement Therapy), an HRT medication that replaces hormones lost during menopausal transition, may help alleviate some symptoms associated with menopause.

Hormones play an essential role in controlling the menstrual cycle and prepping the womb for pregnancy. The brain sends messages to the ovaries to produce oestrogen and progesterone. These hormones aid in prepping the lining of the womb for potential gestation while also controlling blood flow to the brain.

The menstrual cycle is a time of hormonal balance, with the highest levels of estrogen at the start and lowest at its conclusion. As such, migraine symptoms tend to be worse and more frequent during this period than usual.

Migraine can strike at any time of the month and it can be severe and debilitating, making it difficult for women to work or function normally. Signs and symptoms include intense pain, nausea and vomiting, lightheadedness, blurred vision, dizziness or difficulty concentrating.

There are various treatments for migraines, such as over-the-counter medications and prescription painkillers. Some women find success using both together, while others require only one type of medication or another.

Many women report that taking birth control pills (like the combined oral contraceptive pill, which contains both estrogen and progesterone) reduces their migraines. Speak to your doctor about which formulation of oral contraceptive is most suitable for you.

If you’re on hormonal birth control, keep a journal of when and where your migraines occur. This will help pinpoint the time of day of your cycle when they typically begin.

It is essential to take your medication as prescribed and not miss a dose. Furthermore, inform your doctor if you believe the hormones present in the pills may be causing more migraines than usual for you.

Treatment for migraines is essential and can be a challenge. Your doctor may suggest over-the-counter medications like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), triptans and calcium supplements as an initial step. Or they might suggest newer painkillers called calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP) antagonists that could provide temporary relief and prevent future attacks.

Additionally, if you’re thinking of taking hormone therapy, be sure to discuss your risk for stroke with your healthcare provider. According to a recent study, women who experienced more frequent migraines were 30% more likely to have an ischemic stroke than those without hormone replacement therapy and no history of migraines.

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- Welcome, SoundTherapy.com lowers anxiety 86%, pain 77%, and boosts memory 11-29%. Click on the brain to sign up or share with buttons below to help others: