Menstruation-Related Headaches

What Causes Headaches During Period?

Headaches during period can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'worrying' to 'very serious'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose headaches during period, we could:
  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "headaches during period" as a symptom.  Here are eight of many possibilities (more below):
  • Low Female Testosterone
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Allergic Tension
  • Lupus (SLE)
  • Magnesium Need
  • Low Serotonin
  • Dehydration
  • Sarcoidosis

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
frequent 'chills'
slight tongue swelling
hypoglycemia
poor mental clarity
severe fatigue after slight exertion
refined sugar consumption
being a lethargic person
current birth control pill use
caffeinated soft drink consumption
recent breastfeeding
slightly tight muscles
unexplained fevers that hit hard
... and more than 120 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of headaches during period:
Cause Probability Status
Hypoglycemia 91% Confirm
Lupus (SLE) 19% Unlikely
Dehydration 13% Unlikely
Low Serotonin 5% Ruled out
Sarcoidosis 1% Ruled out
Magnesium Need 1% Ruled out
Allergic Tension 1% Ruled out
Low Female Testosterone 1% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate having headaches, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
Do you regularly have headaches that occur in association with your menstrual cycle?
Possible responses:
→ Not Applicable / don't know
→ No
→ Only before menstruation begins
→ Only during menstruation
→ Both before and during menstruation
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate no menstruation-related headaches, premenstrual headaches or menstrual headaches, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Liver Detoxification / Support Requirement
A 'sluggish liver' often contributes to headaches.
Magnesium Requirement
Migraines sufferers often are found to have reduced blood levels of magnesium.
Lupus, SLE (Systemic Lupus Erythromatosis)
Vascular or migraine headaches occur in 10% of lupus patients.
Aspartame/Neotame Side-Effects
Double-blind studies have demonstrated that aspartame causes headaches.  [Headache 1988:28(1) pp.10-14, Biological Psychiatry 1993:34(1) pp.13-17, Neurology 1994:44 pp.1787-93.]
Environmental Illness / MCS
Central nervous system dysfunction is common, resulting in headaches, chronic fatigue, poor short term memory, hyperactivity, and increased appetite leading to food cravings and overeating.
Low Melatonin Level
Migraines sufferers often are found to have reduced blood levels of melatonin.
Estrogens Low
Women must first be exposed to elevated estrogen levels before low estrogen levels will trigger headache activity.  Constant low levels of estrogen, as in menopause, are less likely to be associated with increased headache pattern.
Low Female Testosterone Level
Migraines are more common among women who have very low testosterone levels.

Related Questions

Metabolic Symptoms