All-Natural Remedies for Managing Headaches

Among the most common disorders of the nervous system, headaches affect up to 75 percent of the world’s population each year. There are many different types of headaches, such as tension headaches, cluster headaches, and migraines. In severe cases, headaches can be debilitating, affecting a sufferer’s ability to work and go to school or interact with friends and loved ones.

Treatment options for headaches often focus on pharmaceutical treatments with painkillers, but treatments can also include lifestyle modifications and patient awareness. For those looking to avoid medications, there are a number of all-natural solutions that can be integrated into your headache prevention and treatment options. We discuss a few of these natural options below.


Essential Oils

Botanical extracts like natural essential oils can play a powerful role on the well-being of the human body. Two of the most popular for headaches are peppermint and lavender oils.

With its refreshing scent, peppermint contains menthol, which helps open up clogged blood vessels and regulates blood flow in the body. Add a few drops of pure peppermint oil to a diffuser and breathe in the aroma while resting calmly.

For a topical approach, you can also mix a few drops of peppermint oil to a little water in your hands and massage the temples or the back of your neck with it. Alternatively, can apply fresh, crushed peppermint leaves on your forehead, allowing the cooling menthol to soothe your head.

Similarly, simply smelling the calming scent of lavender essential oil helps. If you don’t have an oil diffuser, add a couple drops of lavender oil to boiling water and inhale the vapors. Alternatively, you can add a few drops to a tissue and breath in for relief. You can also mix two or three drops of lavender oil in water and rub into the head and neck.

 


Ginger

Revered as an effective option for headaches, ginger is a common home remedy for fast relief. Ginger affects the blood vessels in the head, easing pressure. Because it stimulates digestion, it is also popular to lower the nausea linked to migraines. While some will simply chew on a slice of ginger root over time, for a more flavorful option, try steeping ginger root as a tea, adding lemon and honey to desired taste.

 


Cinnamon

Cinnamon is another common household spice that can effectively relieve headaches since it can act as a blood thinner, reducing pressure. Using it is simple; grind whole cinnamon sticks into a powder and add water to create a paste. Apply to forehead and temples for 30 minutes and then rinse off with warm water. You may also experience relief by adding up to half a teaspoon of cinnamon to hot coffee or tea.

 


Stretching

Simply stretching may also reduce your headache pain. A few quick exercises to stretch your head and neck is all it takes. While seated, move your chin upwards and downwards, then left and right. Next bend your neck sideways towards each shoulder as far as is comfortable. Finally, slowly rotate the neck in clockwise and counterclockwise directions and roll your shoulders forward and backward to reduce tension in the shoulder and neck muscles.

 


Basil

Basil is a strong scented herb that has traditional use as a way to reduce headache pain. The plant helps get rid of headaches caused by tension and tight muscles due to its effectiveness as a muscle relaxer. While on the go, you can simply chew some fresh basil leaves to elicit its effects. You can also add a few basil leaves to a cup of boiling water and inhale the steam or drink it as a tea, flavored slightly with honey.

 


Magnesium

People who suffer from serious headaches, like migraines, are often revealed to have low levels of magnesium, and it has been suggested that raising magnesium levels may prevent their onset. To increase your daily magnesium intake, it is suggested that you eat more fiber. Dietary sources of magnesium include beans, whole grains, seeds, nuts, and vegetables like broccoli, squash, and leafy greens. Dairy products, meats, chocolate, and coffee also include levels of magnesium. Many health and wellness shops also carry magnesium supplements.

 


Detox Bath

A detox bath doesn’t just clean your body. It also rids your body of the buildup of toxins that can lead to illness and can be a wonderful preventative for headache. To draw toxins to the surface of your skin, make the water as hot as you can tolerate. As you sit in the slowly cooling water, your body will release these toxins. Common household items like epsom salts can increase your bath’s effectiveness. Adding botanical ingredients mentioned above like lavender, ginger, cinnamon, peppermint, or basil can further enhance your detox soak and suppress pain causing tension. The detoxifying process can be dehydrating, so be sure to drink plenty of water before and after your bath.

For more all-natural ways to boost your wellness, visit our education page.

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