Thursday, 24 December 2009

Causes of Migraine Headache (Migraine Factors or Triggers)

Although much about the causes of migraines are not well understood, Genetics factors and Environmental factors seem to play major roles to cause migraine.

One of the first steps in managing migraines is to identify your migraine factors or triggers and trying to avoid them. By identifying migraine triggers, you will be able to spot the warning signs and therefore control the migraine attack more effectively.

Whatever the exact mechanism of the headaches, a number of things may trigger them. The triggers are different for different patients of migraine. Some potential migraine triggers include:

• Hormonal changes:
A Fluctuation in estrogen seems to trigger migraine headaches. Women having migraines often report headaches immediately before or during their menstrual periods, when they have a major drop in estrogen. Others have an increased tendency to develop migraines during pregnancy or menopause. Hormonal medications such as oral birth control pills and hormone replacement therapy also may worsen migraines. On the other hand, some women find it's beneficial to take them to reduce migraine pain.

• Foods:
Often, migraines appear to be triggered by certain foods. Common foods that usually trigger migraine include caffeine rich drinks, cheeses, chocolate, some beans, aspartame, monosodium glutamate, nuts, peanut butters, salty foods, and processed foods. Irregular or skipping meals and fasting also can trigger migraines.

• Physical and Mental Stress:
Excess physical works and mental stress at work or home usually trigger migraines.

• Sensations:

Bright and flashing lights and sun glare can produce migraines, as can loud sounds. Unusual smells and odours including pleasant scents, such as perfume, and unpleasant odors, such as paint thinner and secondhand smoke sometimes trigger migraines.

• Irregular Sleep:
Missing sleep or getting too much sleep may serve as a trigger for migraine attacks. Irregular sleep for a long time and going to bed at late night also causes migraine pains.

• Allergic Reactions:
Different allergies and allergic reactions such as, Cold Allergy, Dust Allergy, and Food Allergy etc. often provoke migraine.

• Exposure to Smoke and Alcohol:
Smoking and taking alcohol (especially red wine and beer) often works as triggers to migraine.

• Physical factors:
Intense physical exertion, including sexual activity and others may aggravate migraines.

• Changes in the environment:
A change of weather or barometric pressure can prompt a migraine. Besides environmental changes (due to shifting from one place to another) sometimes do not suit people and results in migraine.

• Medications:
Certain medications and oral vitamins can worsen migraines.
Finding out the triggers that cause migraine to an individual and avoiding them bring good result to control and prevent the migraine attacks.


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