There are a number of migraine triggers, including:
Fluctuations in estrogen, such as before or during menstrual periods, pregnancy and menopause, seem to trigger headaches in many women.
Hormonal medications, such as oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy, also can worsen migraines. Some women, however, find their migraines occurring less often when taking these medications.
These include alcohol, especially wine, and too much caffeine, such as coffee.
Stress at work or home can cause migraines.
Bright lights and sun glare can induce migraines, as can loud sounds. Strong smells — including perfume, paint thinner, secondhand smoke and others — trigger migraines in some people.
Missing sleep, getting too much sleep or jet lag can trigger migraines in some people.
Intense physical exertion, including sexual activity, might provoke migraines.
A change of weather or barometric pressure can prompt a migraine.
Oral contraceptives and vasodilators, such as nitroglycerin, can aggravate migraines.
Aged cheeses and salty and processed foods might trigger migraines. So might skipping meals or fasting.
These include the sweetener aspartame and the preservative monosodium glutamate (MSG), found in many foods.
We’ve all heard of Botox, responsible for generations of smooth foreheads in Hollywood. But Botox has also brought relief to many people who suffer from chronic medical conditions. In 2010, Botox was approved for use with chronic migraine, and many patients are reporting success. What do you need to know before considering it?
Botox is a form of botulinum toxin, a neurotoxin produced by the bacteria that causes botulism. When the Botox botulinum toxin is purified and used in tiny doses in specific areas, it temporarily reduces muscle contractions for approximately 3 months.
Botox is injected around pain fibers that are involved in headaches. Botox enters the nerve endings around where it is injected and blocks the release of chemicals involved in pain transmission. This prevents activation of pain networks in the brain.