50% of women who experience regular migraines report that their menstrual cycle affects their intensity and frequency. It should be no wonder, then, that menopause also has an effect on headaches.
For women who experience headaches before menopause, 45% say menopause made their migraines worse. Meanwhile, only 15% of women report a reduction in migraines with menopause.
You have enough on your plate to be dealing with menopause headaches. That's why we're bringing you this guide to the top natural remedies for migraines due to menopause.
Are you ready to stop living in pain? Then keep reading to understand why you get those headaches in the first place and what you can do to stop them for good.
Why Does Menopause Cause Headaches?
Perimenopause is the stage just before you enter full-on menopause. Many women report migraines as one of the most common menopause symptoms. These headaches happen because your hormone levels are fluctuating.
Lower estrogen, in particular, is a trigger for migraines. Researchers have studied this phenomenon in women who use estrogen-containing contraception. After ceasing the use of contraceptives, women experience headaches within the first 5 days.
Some women experience these headaches for three weeks or longer. More often, estrogen withdrawal headaches disappear after three days.
Women who typically get headaches around the time of their period or during ovulation are more prone to perimenopausal headaches. These women report even more severe headaches during perimenopause that tend to abate once they hit menopause.
The good news is there are treatments for estrogen withdrawal headaches due to perimenopause. Keep reading to find out which ones are right for you.
Natural Remedies for Menopause Headaches
Does your doctor keep prescribing hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for your perimenopausal or menopausal symptoms? Then you should know that these treatments don't always work.
In fact, some scientists say that HRT sometimes triggers migraines in perimenopausal women.
Ditch the pills and discover some natural remedies for menopause symptoms like headaches. Check out our top six tips for alleviating the number and frequency of menopause headaches the all-natural way.
From chocolate to red wine, you be unknowingly triggering menopause headaches through your eating patterns. The triggers of menopause headaches are different among women. Here are some of the most common triggers:
- Aged cheese (e.g., parmesan and blue cheese
- Dairy products
If you think your diet may be worsening your menopausal headaches, it's time for a change. Increased consumption of whole foods, including vegetables (except for tomatoes in some cases) and fruits (except for citruses in some cases), is a good start for an anti-migraine diet.
The American Migraine Foundation found that the therapeutic technique of biofeedback alone can reduce migraines by 45%–60%. That's because biofeedback is a relaxation technique meant to reduce stress.
Biofeedback utilizes a monitoring device, which helps you get in-tune with your bodily responses. From muscle tensing to the temperature of your body, biofeedback encourages you to try to alter the physical aspects of your body with your mind.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is another therapeutic technique often used to treat stress, anxiety, and depression. With CBT, you will learn how to deal with stress better and relax.
Since stress is often a trigger for perimenopausal migraines, CBT can help reduce the number of episodes you experience. What's more, CBT may actually help you better tolerate the discomfort of a headache.
Exercise isn't just good for your weight— getting in a good workout may also help prevent menopausal migraines. This is because exercise is associated with the release of another hormone: endorphins. Not only do endorphins make you happy, but they also help with natural pain relief.
Keep in mind that exercise-induced migraine is also a thing. Throwing yourself into a hard exercise all at once is a good way to burn out and potentially trigger a headache.
If you don't exercise regularly already, build up your exercise routine gradually. Start with a short walk in the evenings and progressively make the walk longer. Once you're up to it, you can add short bursts of running or wrist weights to amp up your routine.
If you aren't getting enough vitamin B2 (riboflavin) or magnesium, you may be making your menopausal migraines worse. Researchers are still learning how and why vitamin B2 influences headaches. But they do know that people with migraines tend to have lower levels of endogenous magnesium than people with few to no migraines.
Other supplements that may have a positive effect on migraines include:
- Vitamin D
- Coenzyme Q10
- Lavender Oil
However, supplements may have some unwanted side effects and may not be right for women on certain medications. Make sure to speak with your primary care physician before adding a new supplement to your regimen.
The Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practice of acupuncture has shown useful in treating headaches. Acupuncture's goal is to treat pain through the use of needles.
Studies show that it may be effective against headaches in some circumstances, too. Acupuncture results in an increase of creatine in the brain. Creatine may help reduce the severity of headaches after undergoing acupuncture.
Grab 'n Go Meals for a Healthier Lifestyle During Menopause
Menopause headaches happen because of estrogen withdrawal but are exacerbated by triggers, including some foods and stress. The good news is something as simple as changing the way you eat could eliminate those pesky headaches for good.
Do you want to start eating better to prevent menopausal migraines and maybe even lose weight while you're at it? Then order now from the Dinner Dude and discover the difference healthy, whole foods can make on your health.