Migraines are a neurological disorder that occurs most often in women- three to one, according to current research. Not only does sex determine your proneness for migraine attacks- fierce pounding headaches, nausea, and light sensitivity- but also when it comes to migraine symptoms and triggers, male and female migraineurs are from two different planets.
When you look at current migraine research, it seems like it’s the woman’s lot in life to suffer from migraines.
- For example, in an American Migraine Study of 30,000 individuals, scientists found migraine disorder in 18.2% of women and 6.5% of men.
- A UK study noted migraines in 18% of women, where only 8% of men reported having ever suffered a migraine headache.
- Childhood migraine sufferers under the age of 12 are usually boys, but beginning with puberty, the likeliness to suffer from migraines slowly shifts to females, peaking at a 3 to 1 ratio between the ages of 35 and 45.
- When comparing the rate of migraine with aura (MA) versus migraine without aura, scientists note that male migraine aura sufferers are more likely to experience their first migraine from an earlier age (5 yrs.), where female migraineurs who experience migraine with aura began at the age of 12 or 13.
More migraine triggers
One reason women are most prone to migraines has to do with Mother Nature. Women get menstrual migraines; men don’t- plain and simple. Women suffer hormonal imbalances as a result of puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, birth control, and menopause- all of which trigger migraines.
About 14% of women only get migraines during their periods, because of hormonal imbalances.
Another theory is in the way women and men react to stress. Women are more likely to be introspective, to fixate on emotional issues, conflicts, and crises, which in turn trigger migraines, where men are more physical-oriented, and their stress manifests itself in backaches and aggressive behavior.
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