What are the Most Common Causes of Migraine Headaches?

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  • Written By: K. Gierok
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 25 August 2019
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Typically, migraines are a variety of headache that causes the affected to be highly sensitive to light and sound. Though there are a number of different causes of migraine headaches, the most common being a change in hormone levels. In addition, family history has been found to be highly linked to the development of migraine headaches, especially when the sufferers are of the same gender. Other common causes of migraine headaches include increases in stress levels, the consumption of specific types of foods, and increases in visual and auditory stimulation. In some cases, affected individuals can recognize an environment that is prone to leading to the development of a migraine, and prevent its onset.

One of the most common causes of migraine headaches is a change in hormone levels. As changes in the amount of estrogen in the body has been found to be a primary cause of migraines, women who are pregnant or who are expecting their monthly period are at an increased risk for the development of migraine headaches. In addition, certain medications that are used to regulate hormonal fluctuations can, at times, also be to blame for an increase in the rate of migraines. Those who have recently changed or started medications and experience severe, chronic migraines should consider consulting with their physician as soon as possible.


Some studies have suggested that migraines are hereditary, meaning that they are strongly linked to family history. In some cases, research suggests that individuals who have a parent who suffers from migraines face a 50% chance of developing migraines themselves. Surprisingly, gender links appear to be especially strong when it comes to a family history of migraines. Women with a mother affected by migraines are much more likely to develop the condition than if their father suffered from the condition. Similarly, men with a father affected by migraines statistically are much more prone to develop the condition than those with a mother affected by migraines.

Other common causes of migraine headaches include high amounts of stress; the consumption of foods rich in alcohol, sugar, fat, or caffeine; and high amounts of sensory stimulation, especially of the auditory or visual variety. Some research suggests that individuals who suffer from migraines may cause an onset of the condition through excessive video game use. Typically, patients who have suffered from migraines for a substantial period of time are able to recognize the conditions that trigger a migraine, and avoid these conditions as much as possible.



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Post 2

@raynbow- I had chronic migraines, and my doctor insisted that I decrease the amount of sugar I eat and eliminate caffeine. Making these two changes have definitely decreased the frequency of migraine headaches for me.

Post 1

Does anyone have any thoughts about the effects of dietary changes and frequent migraines?

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