Hormonal headaches are suffered by women and can take place during the menstrual cycle. Hormones are what induces the pain response so both men and hormones prompt womens headaches. Headaches are sometimes our body using a warning system that something serious is going on. Hormones regulate and start many of the body’s functions, so it is not surprising that they are in some way connected to headaches.

Menstrual migraines are hormonal headaches. Serotonin is one of the most common of the hormonal triggers. Women who suffer migraines may do so because of the way serotonin interacts with her female hormones. Menstrual migraines are caused by estrogen, which is the female sex hormone. They can get headaches when the estrogen and progesterone levels change in her cycle.


A woman may experience one-sided throbbing, accompanied by nausea, vomiting, or light sensitivity or sound sensitivity.

Women who suffer from Pre-Menstrual Syndrome (PMS) may also have hormonal headaches. These headaches happen before the period starts. The PMS headache may be accompanied by acne, joint pain, and fatigue.

She may also experience an increased occurrence of fear, panic attacks, a decreased sexual desire, and she may also suffer from an impaired judgment or memory problems. She may seem to be paranoid or be more sensitive to rejection. Typically these symptoms disappear as soon as the menstrual cycle begins.


You should always discuss treatment plans with your doctor. As a preventative you can take NSAIDs two days before you expect your period to start and continue taking them throughout your menstrual flow.

You can take Fenoprofen calcium, Naproxen sodium, Mefenamic acid.

Other drugs that your doctor may suggest are Ergotamines including Ergotamine tartrate, Bellergal-S, Ergonovine, Dihydroergotamine, and Methysergide.

You can also ask your doctor about diuretics such as Spironolactone.

Another hormonal time in a woman’s life is pregnancy so it is not surprising that pregnant women experience hormonal headaches.

Pregnancy and Hormone Headaches

Most women will discover a decrease in the occurrence of migraines during pregnancy because of the protective effects of estrogen and progesterone staying fairly constant (remember it is the fluctuation of estrogen and progesterone that trigger headaches). Some women will still suffer from migraines during the first trimester.

Unfortunately some pregnant women for some reason still suffer from headaches during pregnancy.

All medications should be avoided during the first trimester of pregnancy, due to the fetus being susceptible to drug-induced deformities. Your obstetrician may prescribe a medication to take if your hormonal headaches continue after the first trimester.

After delivery of the baby, new moms may suffer from headaches if they had a spinal during c-section or as an epidural. Lying flat can relieve this type of headache.

Non-drug headache remedies that you may wish to try are:

Biofeedback, relaxation exercises, eliminating all food triggers, use cold packs, avoid exercising such as running, and practice neck-relaxation exercises.

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