Menstrual migraines or hormone migraines plague 60% of fertile women and occur immediately before, during or immediately after the menstrual cycle. Another peak time of occurrence is during ovulation. I was one of the unfortunate individuals that had a menstrual migraine from the onset of my cycle until one day after my cycle was complete.
My menstrual migraines were incapacitating, especially when they were complicated by severe cramps. I would literally confine myself to the bedroom, shades drawn and sleep for two full days. This was conducive with going to school or work because I missed at least one day a month. I consulted my family doctor and we tried several prescriptions but could not find the right combination that worked to alleviate the migraines or the cramps. I then went to a gynecologist and finally a neurologist before I found the right combination of medication that provided enough relief to put me back into society as a normal individual.
As I aged, I found that having children helped alleviate the intensity of the migraines and their frequency. My hormone imbalance became fairly stabilized which helped in the migraine occurrences. Other factors began to come into play after my pregnancies. I began to notice certain sounds, lights and foods would cause the onset of the menstrual migraine. My body reacted with tension in my neck, a dull throb in the back of my head and some light sensitivity. On a few occasions, I experience nausea and vomiting with the menstrual migraines.
As soon as I notice any migraine signs, I begin taking Excedrin Migraine along with drinking more water. This combination either eliminates the menstrual migraine or keeps it dull enough to not interrupt my daily activities. I continue to take prescription medication when the migraines became severe. Another remedy I found is placing a cold compress on my neck or forehead. The cooling sensation of the cold compress helps to alleviate the pain associated with the migraine. This works extremely well when taking a nap or going to bed for the evening.
The best recommendation I can give to anyone who has menstrual migraines is to eat extremely healthy just prior to your cycle and continue that pattern until your cycle is complete. Take an over-the-counter migraine medication to help with the headache. Talk to your family doctor or gynecologist about the migraines and follow their suggestions. Don’t hesitate to take the prescriptions recommended. The menstrual migraine can be tamed!