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Menopause and Migraines

Have you seen an increase in migraines as you enter perimenopause or menopause years? I am hearing that frequency can increase and just trying to find out what everyone is doing and what's been helpful during this time. Thanks...Jen

  1. Hi, Jen! You are certainly not alone in dealing with migraine and (peri)menopause -- it is a huge topic of conversation here. Some women see improvement as they progress into menopause, but others see no change or worsening symptoms. Here is a link to an extensive search for menopause discussions from our archives ... take your time looking through them, I'm sure something will be of interest. I'm sure others will weigh in here as well. Can you tell us more about your migraine history and what you've tried? We're not experts, but it could help guide this conversation better. Take care and glad to have you here with us! -Melissa, migraine.com team

    1. Hey - thanks so much! As for history - I started getting migraines about 35 years ago in my teens. I've taken about 15 different medications over the years to both stop migraines after they start and preventative medications as well. As I'm hitting perimenopause, I'm finding frequency is increasing. I almost always get a migraine the 1-2 days prior to my cycle and then again after my cycle. They are predictable and consistent which is no fun!

      1. Hi Jen- looks as if 's link got lost in the mix. I wanted to be sure to include it as we do have a treasure trove on the topic in our archives here: https://migraine.com/search?s=menopause. Thank you for helping us understand more about how your frequency is on the uptick now as you are closing in on menopause. I will say this happens to many (as you'll see in the articles we have) and it would likely be a good idea to take some time to either visit a migraine specialist or an OBGYN. I, like you, have had migraine since my early years, exacerbated by hormones. There are ways to handle types of migraine because they are predictable and consistent, actually. Depending on where you are in your process, some doctors may suggest putting you on a continuous birth control pill to regulate your hormonal levels until you reach menopause. There are various approaches worth trying, for sure but it may be a bumpy ride. The point is, that having a good partnership with a specialist (migraine or hormonal) will be key in helping you navigate this window of time. Please do take a look at our resources, though, as many of our community members have a lot of wisdom to share and are years ahead of us in the process. Let us know what other questions you have as you move along. We are here for you! Warmly- Holly -migraine.com team.

      2. Why do I moderate late at night? 😁 Thanks so much!

    2. I know this post is older, but my migraines have decreased dramatically since going through menopause. I’ve had migraines since my early teens. As I got older I would literally get them 20 days a month. My cycles completely stopped around 5 years ago, at the age of 45. I don’t take anything for hot flashes, or any other medications. The only thing I get now are sinus type headaches that come and go over a 3-4 day period, but those are so much easier to deal with than what I had before. Not sure what caused them to subside, but I’m so thankful they have


      1. Thank you for sharing this with us! We've heard from other women who see improvement in migraine attack frequency after menopause. What a relief for you!
        How are you doing today? Nancy Harris Bonk, Patient Leader/Moderator Migraine.com Team

    3. Lately I’ve been getting them again. Had one that kept me up most of the night. Trying to figure out what’s causing them.

      1. Oh my goodness, I'm so sorry you've had such a tough increase in your migraine frequency. It's hard to tell given that there are so many potential triggers at play. When you had them so frequently before, what were your other triggers besides hormones? Things like changes in sleep, weather, stress, bright lights, loud sounds, strong smells, are among a huge list of potential triggers: https://migraine.com/migraine-triggers. Sometimes keeping a diary can help discern what's causing them. It may be time to be re-evaluated by a neurologist with this recent uptick in attack frequency. Did you once see a neurologist/migraine specialist when your attacks were so constant? We can send you a link to help you find a doctor in your area if that would be of help to you. Thinking of you- Holly (migraine.com team).

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