Migraine Triggers

Migraine causes and triggers

The exact cause of migraine is unknown. However, it is believed to be the result of abnormal brain activity; this affects some people more than others on account of a genetic predisposition and may be ‘triggered” by a range of environmental, emotional, physical and dietary factors 4.


Migraineurs (people who suffer with migraine) may often have specific triggers, or a combination of triggers, which can be quite variable, involving changes in the internal or external environment.

Internal triggers include 4:

  • Stress
  • Dehydration
  • A missed meal
  • Individual foodstuffs
  • Hormonal changes around menstruation

External triggers include 4:

  • A thundery day
  • Bright winter sun
  • Loud noise
  • Strong smells particularly from petrochemicals.