The Cause of Migraine Headaches: Where Does The Pain Come From?

Migraine headaches account for extreme suffering and thousands upon thousands of lost workdays per year. Migraine headaches create a pain that throbs and often begins in one specific area and gradually takes over the rest of the head. The headaches are so strong that many people have ruined days a result. In addition to severe pain, migraine sufferers may also deal with nausea, sound sensitivity, light sensitivity, vomiting and intolerance to smells. So what are the causes of migraine headaches? Read below on some of the causes of migraine headaches as well as treatments available.

Are There Really Causes Of Migraine Headaches?

Doctors think that the condition may stem from reactions by the nervous system to bodily or environmental changes. In addition, family histories seem to play a big part in a person’s predisposition to migraines. Most members of the medical community do not claim that there are causes of migraine headaches, but rather that there are migraine triggers.

These triggers range from a variety of stimuli that enter the body on a daily bases either outwardly or inwardly. Examples of migraine triggers include alcohol, weather changes, temperature or time changes, caffeine, monosodium glutamate or MSG, sunlight or glair, hormones, hunger, lack of sleep, stress, medications or overbearing smells. The list does not stop there, but continues with cheese, oranges and citrus fruits, pork, onions, etc. Obviously, these triggers are going to be different among different people. Though they may not be “causes” of migraine headaches per se, keeping certain foods out of your diet may limit your episodes of migraine headaches.

Migraine Treatments

While the causes of migraine headaches are not specifically known, there are many treatments available to reduce the frequency and severity of migraines. One of the most common treatments in women is hormone therapy, such as placing a woman on birth control or other methods. Other medical treatments include anti-depressants, ergots, midrins, and analgesics.

If the stress of taking more medicine threatens to bring on a migraine attack of its own, there are of course more natural treatments, the first of which is stress management. Stress management can be achieved through exercise, yoga and meditation. In addition, there is strong evidence to suggest that acupuncture can also help treat migraines. Regardless of which treatment you take, staying away from the triggers or causes of your migraine headaches will help keep your number of episodes down.

Related Information and Products

A migraine is a primary headache disorder characterized by recurrent headaches that are moderate to severe. Typically, the headaches affect one half of the head, are pulsating in nature, and last from two to 72 hours. Associated symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light, sound, or smell. The pain is generally made worse by physical activity.
Migraine - Wikipedia
Causes. Though migraine causes aren't understood, genetics and environmental factors appear to play a role. Migraines may be caused by changes in the brainstem and its interactions with the trigeminal nerve, a major pain pathway.
Migraine - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic
Migraine is a neurological condition that can cause multiple symptoms. It’s frequently characterized by intense, debilitating headaches. Symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, difficulty ...