Menstrual migraine isn’t your average headache or migraine. In a 2015 study, women with menstrual migraines reported prolonged migraines and more severe symptoms of nausea than women with non-menstrual migraines.
Insider spoke with Vincent Martin, MD, co-director of the UC Headache and Facial Pain Center and professor of internal medicine, about migraines and menstruation in women. Martin, also a UC Health physician, said that following menopause, “female hormones are falling and this can either drastically improve or sometimes worsen migraine attacks.”
“Birth control pills can worsen headaches in some girls or women because estrogen levels plummet during the placebo week of the birth control pills, which can trigger migraine attacks. One strategy to manage this is to use extended duration birth control pills that only give a placebo week every 3 months instead of monthly,” Martin tells Insider.
Specific triggers, notably stress, can also bring on migraines, according to Martin.