What Causes Migraines

What Causes Migraines
What Causes Migraines


What Causes Migraines - The causes of migraines are not very clear even today. Actually, doctors and researchers still carry out studies to identify the exact causes of migraines. The current information from research and studies regarding this condition shows that the environment and genetic composition of an individual usually play an important role. Irrespective of the actual cause, it usually ends up causing an interaction between the brainstem and one of the major pain pathways. In other cases, these causes might lead to the changes in the composition of chemicals of the brain. For instance, when a chemical called serotonin reduces in its levels pain-causing substances within the head are released. Consequently, the individual suffers from some headache pain.

In order for the interactions of the brain and changes of chemical composition to occur, there is always a certain trigger. Following is a discussion of some of these triggers for migraines.

The first trigger of migraines is a change in hormonal levels especially in women. One of the hormones that usually changes in its levels in a woman is the estrogen hormone. These changes are experienced before and after a woman’s periods, during her ovulation, when she is pregnant and during her menopause. Therefore, most women usually suffer from migraine attacks during these times. In addition, when a woman takes oral contraceptives, her level of hormones is affected. Therefore, she suffers from some migraine as well.

The second cause of migraine attacks is the food that an individual consumes. Some people suffer from episodes of migraines immediately after eating certain foods. Some of the food triggers are alcoholic beverages, chocolates and chocolate flavored snacks, and caffeine. The alcoholic drinks that are likely to lead to a migraine attack are beers as well as red wines. Caffeine is found in beverages such as coffee and some energy drinks. Apart from specific foods triggering migraines, it is also possible for someone to suffer from an attack after skipping some meals.

Thirdly, the people who suffer from stress are usually highly prone to suffering from migraine attacks. Stress could be because of pressure from someone’s workplace, domestic issues, personal problems or any other reason. The thing is that some people react to their stress by suffering from migraine attacks.

The fourth category of triggers for migraines is that of stimuli to an individual’s senses. The first stimulus is that of sight. When someone who suffers from migraines sees some bright light, which could be from a bulb or the sun, he is likely to suffer from a migraine episode. Another sensory trigger could be some smell, which could be either good or bad. For instance, it could be the smell of some paint, food or perfume.

The fifth trigger for migraines is the alteration of an individual’s habits of sleeping. However, different people react differently in the way that they change these patterns. Some people usually suffer from attacks because of increasing their sleep hours whereas others suffer from migraine episodes if they sleep for a less time than they normally sleep.