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5 Natural Headache Remedies

Updated on February 14, 2013
You don't have to live with the pain!
You don't have to live with the pain!
Apply pressure to the "Solar plexus" for a few minutes for quick relief!
Apply pressure to the "Solar plexus" for a few minutes for quick relief!
This is the "Union Valley" applying pressure and massaging this area can help!
This is the "Union Valley" applying pressure and massaging this area can help!

Looking for More All Natural Remedies?

CLICK HERE to read about hot to naturally help your child with ADD/ ADHD.


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Headache Tea Recipes

Ginger Tea

Fresh Ginger is easily found at your local grocery store. Crush up approximately 1 inch of Ginger Root and add it to a a cup or so of boiling water and boil for about 10 minutes. Strain out the Ginger and sip the soothing waters!

Plum Tea -

Boil 3.5 cups of water and add 5 Prunes, 2 tablespoons of mint, and a bag of green tea.This will relieve some of the pressure and tension!

Drink no more than 3 cups a day!

Quit collecting bottles!

It is reported that over 12 million Americans endure chronic headaches — meaning they have headaches more than 15 days out of every month. I am one of these sad people.

There is nothing more frustrating than grabbing for your bottle of over-the-counter headache medicine and finding an empty bottle. What's worse is when you are wincing in pain and you continue your search through the medicine cabinet and again come up empty handed. You are out of Excedrin, aspirin, ibuprofen, EVERYTHING! This means you must jump in the car and drive in the bright sunlight while holding your aching head. Then, you must listen to the loudspeaker, the bleeping registers, and other various noises that pierce your cranium at the grocery to simply get 1 fabulous bottle of relief. This recently happened to me. My failed search turned up 4 empty bottles of headache medicine. This prompted me to wonder "can taking this much medicine be good for me"? My vote is probably not. So, what is a person who is trying to love a more "green" / "all-natural" lifestyle to do? I went on a new hunt....A hunt for all natural headache remedies.

Knowing your Headache

The most common headache is a tension headache. This is the type of headache that makes your head feel like it is in a vice-grip with pressure on both sides of your head. It is common for us to react to stress by unknowingly tightening these muscles and this is what leads to the pain due to reduced blood supply.

And then there are migraines. Oh boy, these are my types of headaches. These have an intense throbbing usually on one side of your head. This immense pain can be accompanied by blurred vision, nausea, light sensitivities, and "floaters" in your vision.

Cluster headaches are the least common and probably the most painful. The pain usually forms around one eye which can end up being watery and red. They usually won't last long but in some cases occur off and on for a few days after onset.

So What Can you do?

First, you need to try to discern what is causing your headaches. Many doctors will suggest keeping a diary and noting things like weather conditions, meals, stressful factors or events, sleep schedule, any drinking or smoking, basically everything. This will help to find a common denominator for your headache days.

How to Naturally Remedy Your Headache

1. Acupressure/Acupuncture.Both are noted to relieve body tension.

  • Acupressure - Whenever you feel like a headache is approaching, using your opposite thumb and forefinger-try applying pressure to the Union Valley (X marks the spot on the picture), the Union Valley is the area where your thumb meets your palm.
  • Acupuncture - in a study by the Bristish Medicine Journal, acupuncture was noted to eliminate sick days, trips to the doctor, and reduce the need for medicinal intervention in study participants who received 12 sessions over 3 months.

2. De-Stress! Not only will this help with you headaches but stress has been linked to many health issues: depression, anxiety, heart attacks, stroke, hypertension, increased susceptibility to infections...just to name a few.

  • Yoga- Many poses will help to alleviate headache pain.
  • Massage - You can try self massage by using a circular motion on the tissue behind and around the ear. Also try a reflexology technique by applying pressure to areas of your foot.
  • Aromatherapy -Aromatherapy is great for headaches because it has both analgesic and anti-inflammatory benefits and assists in relaxation. A few drops of lavender oil rubbed on the temple will relieve some headaches. A cold compress of peppermint essential oil laid over the forehead may also help as it provides a cooling and relaxing feeling.

3. Eat Something? It could be something that you ate OR something you should eat!

  • Many migraines are started with a food trigger. If you suffer from migraines, you should avoid things like MSG, alcohol, food additives, and artificial sweeteners.
  • EAT Almonds. Eating a handful of almonds could help relieve the pressure off a headache. Almonds contain salicin, which is a pain reliever similar to aspirin.

4. Homeopathic Remedies- please check with your doctor before taking tinctures or pills with homeopathic supplements-especially if you have allergies or are taking other medications.

  • White willow bark. White Willow Bark is another salicin-rich supplement. It assists in relieving pain and inflammation.
  • Valerian root. Often called "nature's Valium," this herbal remedy is used to treat headaches, insomnia, and muscular pain.
  • Fever Few is also noted to be a headache reliever.
  • Ginger Tea - it reduces inflammation and reacts in the same time as an aspirin.
  • Even popular homeopathic companies like Hyland's makes a Migraine tablet.

5.CAFFEINE - Okay, this one is dependent on who you talk to-

  • Many over-the-counter headache products DO contain caffeine. Caffeine helps the body absorb headache drugs more quickly, bringing faster relief. Meaning, you will take less medicine. A lack of caffeine is noted as a trigger for migraines.
  • Caffeine is also known to can be too stimulating and cause anxiety and sleep problems both which can cause a headache!
  • CAFFEINE withdrawal is REAL! Caffeine is a foreign substance that is found in sodas, coffee, teas, and even in chocolate. If you are using caffeine in excess - kicking it cold turkey can cause headaches, nauseousness, allergic reaction type symptoms, and more. Best to reduce your daily intake before kicking it to the curb!

So....How Do I PREVENT Headaches. The answer is almost always the same- Have a "Healthy Life" Overhaul!

  • Exercise
  • VISIT THE DENTIST - Many headaches could be caused by dental issues! Teeth grinding, improper jaw alignment, etc.
  • SLEEP - Lack of sleep can be a headache trigger.
  • Eat "Cleaner"
  • Take time for yourself to relax

I hope that these headache tips and tricks will help keep you from having to many full or empty bottles of headache medicine in your cabinet. Only you know what's best for you and your headache but if you are like me....anything to stay out of the quiet and dark room is something worth trying!

If you have an all-natural remedy that you suggest, please share!



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    • Mommymay profile image
      Author

      Heather May 4 years ago from Ohio

      I am glad you mentioned Valerian root because that in one remedy that I have not tried yet myself. It is in my son's "calming" medicine so I read more about it the other day and am thinking that it may help me as well!

    • Mommymay profile image
      Author

      Heather May 4 years ago from Ohio

      Icbenefield = Thank you for reading and voting! Some people say that they still get some effect from the team with ground ginger but during the processing of the ginger many essential oils are lost so when you go with fresh, you will get more of an effect.

    • lcbenefield profile image

      lcbenefield 4 years ago from Georgia

      Very interesting and informative. I've been thinking about cutting down on otc meds for headaches. Ibuprofen, tylenol, and the others can be damaging to our liver and kidneys. Can the ginger tea be made with ground ginger and be just as effective? Thanks for the pictures about the spots on our feet and hands. I will have to give these a try. Voted up, useful and interesting.

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Very useful information, Heather. I'd heard about the Union Valley technique but was grateful that you covered it here so I could have a closer look at it, both via your text and the photo. Also wanted to share that my wife believes in the effectiveness of Valerian root and has shared it with our adult kids (from the time they were little) and me. I agree with you and many others--natural is better!

    • Mommymay profile image
      Author

      Heather May 4 years ago from Ohio

      Stephanieb27 - Thanks so much for reading the hub and commenting! At one point in my life, I was SO good about not taking medicines but I slipped back into old habits that i need to break! If you have any other natural remedies...please share!

    • stephanieb27 profile image

      stephanieb27 4 years ago from United States

      Great hub! I try to avoid taking medicine whenever possible. Thanks for the great tips on relieving headaches! :)