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Migraines Exposed: 3 Reasons Why Women Suffer the Most

By HERWriter
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Migraines Exposed: 3 Reasons Why Women Suffer Most Tyler Olson/Fotolia

The very small study consisted of 44 men and women participants, half of whom were migraine sufferers. Both the women and men with migraines rated them as intense, but the females had a tendency to label them as much more unpleasant.

Researchers scanned the participants’ brains via MRIs looking for differences between the brains of both sexes during a migraine.

Female migraine sufferers showed slightly thicker gray matter in two regions: the posterior insula, which is a pain processing area, and the precuneus, which has been recently linked to migraines, according to Science Magazine.

The other volunteers, including the male migraine sufferers, did not show this thickening.

A third possible reason that women suffer more migraines could be sensitivity to triggers like alcohol and caffeine. HowStuffWorks.com said that men and women can consume the same amount of either, but the end results are different.

Women — typically being smaller — do not metabolize these and other chemicals and foods like men. Women could therefore be more susceptible to getting migraines in higher numbers after consuming such triggers.

Reviewed June 30, 2016
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith

Cruzan Morton, Carol. "Why Do Women Get More Migraines?" Science. N.p., 2012. Web. 10 June 2016.

Neighmond, Patti. "Why Women Suffer More Migraines Than Men." NPR. NPR, n.d. Web. 10 June 2016.

Sember, Brette. "Why Do Women Have More Migraines than Men?" HowStuffWorks. N.p., 2008. Web. 10 June 2016.

Sifferlin, Alexandra. "Here's Why Women Get Migraines More Than Men." Time. Time, n.d. Web. 10 June 2016.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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