I Always Have Premenstrual Headaches: Can You Help?

Sep 14, 2023
I Always Have Premenstrual Headaches: Can You Help?
Do you dread the days before or during your period due to headaches? Hormones could be at fault. However, there’s a fix. Read on to find out how hormones cause headaches and what can be done about it.

Not every woman experiences premenstrual headaches, but those who do may often see themselves unable to go through with their daily routine. In addition to the throbbing pain, some may experience nausea, sensitivity, fatigue, and dizziness. 

If you do suffer from premenstrual headaches, there’s hope. Below, we asked our experts at The Ashford Center to explain what’s behind these premenstrual symptoms and what treatments are available to improve life quality. 

Understanding how hormones cause headaches 

Hormones are often associated with the reproductive system, but before estrogen and progesterone are secreted in the ovaries, they must get a signal from the brain. 

Hormones are regulated by the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland, which stimulate the ovaries to produce estrogen and progesterone. 

At the end of menstruation, after the ovaries are stimulated to release eggs, estrogen and progesterone levels drop. This drop in hormones is what causes headaches in some women, and it happens in every woman of reproductive age. 

However, some women experience headaches while others do not. Some specialists suggest that women who have these headaches experience a sharper decline in estrogen than women who don’t have them.

Risk factors for developing headaches before or during your period 

Underlying hormone imbalances and conditions affecting the reproductive system are more likely to raise your risk for headaches. For example, suffering from endometriosis makes you more likely to experience headaches. 

However, hormone imbalances can happen even in the absence of an underlying condition. Any type of stressor, such as rapid weight loss or even being tired or stressed at work, can impact hormone secretion in the brain — which, in turn, is responsible for stimulating hormone production in the ovaries. 

When hormones are out of whack, a neuroactive peptide is secreted as you shed the endometrium lining during the menstruation. This peptide triggers your headaches. 

Fixing the problem of premenstrual headaches

Headaches can be routine-disturbing. You may find it hard to focus on work or simply go about your everyday life. 

Fortunately, there’s relief. Most women benefit from a one-time treatment, endometrial ablation. During endometrial ablation our experts removes the tissue lining inside your uterus which is often the cause of headaches. Endometrial ablation is also used as a way to relieve heavy, painful periods. After the procedure most women don’t have a period at all, or have very light, painless periods. Good candidates aren’t planning to get pregnant as the removal of the lining significantly reduces your chances to conceive. 

However, since every woman is different and has a unique hormone profile and medical history, it’s best to contact us to schedule an appointment and find out what could be causing your symptoms.