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Headache Relief: Use the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)

Updated on February 1, 2014

Drug-free Headache & Migraine Relief with EFT

Whether its tension headache, migraine headache, cluster headache or just a plain headache, the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) often gets results when nothing else has worked. But for starters...

Most headaches are caused by dehydration. The drug companies won't tell you this because water is almost free so they can't make any money out of it. How much actual water have you had to drink to day? Tea, coffee, juices, and soft-drinks do not count. How much water have you had to drink?

Drink 2 full glasses of water, right now; in 20-minutes drink another two full glasses of water.

Something like 80% of headaches and migraines are caused by dehydration, so go ahead and drink that other glass of water. You can read my personal experience with dehydration later on.

If your headache is something other than dehydration then try this simple acupressure technique that often works when nothing else will. This technique is based on the same principles as acupuncture only it doesn't use needles just the simple tapping of your finger tips on energy points. It's called: The Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT).

About the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)

The Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) have taken Einstein's discoveries (that everything is energy, including the human body) and married them with the ancient tradition of acupuncture.

The success of EFT lies in the balancing of the body's subtle energies that flow through the body, in much the same way as blood flows through veins. This balancing is done with an elegant sort of emotional acupuncture. Instead of using needles, specific points on the body are stimulated by tapping with the fingertips.

EFT is so simple that it can be easily learned by anyone and self-applied. Some cases are more complex, however, and may require assistance from an experienced EFT Practitioner.

How do you use EFT to cure your headache?

EFT is done by using your fingertips to tap on easily found acupressure points on the body. These points are shown in the photos above and in detail on this graphic. The points are the same on both sides of the face and body.

The tapping is done with the same firmness as you might drum your fingers on the desk. Use the middle three fingers of either hand when tapping so that you don't need to be worried about the exact location of the points. Use both hands and tap on both sides at the same time is preferable.

The tapping is combined with a focusing phrase that keeps your mind on the problem, in this case, the headache. When we focus on the problem and tap on the acupressure points, the energy system in our body is balanced and the pain is relieved.

In this case we will use a focusing phrase for your headache such as: "This pain behind my eyes" or "This throbbing at the base of my neck" or simply "This headache". The more specific you are about the location and description of the pain the better.

EFT Step-by-Step

To start, take a reading of how bad the headache is so that you can tell if there is any change. We do this by picking a number on a scale from 0 - 10, where 0 is headache free and 10 is the worst. If you are unsure of the number then guess, as this will usually be the correct number. Write the number down so that you can compare it after applying EFT.

  1. On a scale of 0-10, where 10 is the worst, how bad is the pain? Write down this number.
  2. Start and continue tapping on the Karate Chop point while saying the focusing phrase 3 times. For example:

    "Even though I have this headache, I accept myself."

    "Even though I have this headache, I accept myself."

    "Even though I have this headache, I accept myself."

    Remember to substitute the specific focusing phrase for your own headache.

  3. At each tapping point, from the head down, tap a few times while saying the focusing phrase. So, for example, start tapping on the top of the head and say "This headache behind my eyes" Then move to the eyebrow point, start tapping, and say "This headache behind my eyes". Continue until you have tapped on each of the illustrated tapping points. Repeat for 5 or 6 rounds.
  4. Take another reading of the pain on a scale of 0 - 10 and compare this to the questions (a), (b), and (c) below.

  5. Is the new number lower than the one you wrote down in step 1 i.e. has the headache reduced? Great! Repeat the steps 1-4 until the number is at zero or doesn't go any lower.
  6. Is the number the same but the pain has now moved or changed in some way? Awesome! You're making progress. Make up a new focusing phrase to describe the new location and type of pain and repeat steps 1-4.
  7. Is the new number the same or higher than the number you wrote down in step 1 i.e. has the headache got worse or intensified? STAY CALM. While you might think you have done something wrong, you have not. You are actually getting closer to the resolving the real issue behind the pain. Please read the Advanced Notes below before repeating the procedure.

Advanced Notes

If, after a round of tapping, the pain intensifies or stays the same then its time to put on your Detective's hat and delve deeper into the problem. It is very likely there is an emotional issue related to the headache that you need to find. To identify the emotional issue behind the headache, ask yourself the following questions:

  • When did the headache first start? What was happening in your life at that time?
  • What is the earliest time in your life that you remember having these headaches?
  • Who does the headache remind you of?
  • How old were you when you starting having these headaches?
  • Did you have an accident that caused the headache initially? What was it?

If you have trouble coming up with something, try guessing what this could be about as this will usually be the right memory.

Now that you have some answers, make up a new focusing phrase to describe this memory e.g. "this car accident headache", or "this divorce headache", or "this stress at work headache". Repeat the tapping steps 1-4 with this new focusing phrase.

Again, evaluate your results at the end of the round of tapping and proceed from there.

Using EFT will often achieve lasting results when nothing else has worked!

More about EFT

EFT is the most successful health innovation in the last 100 years and works on every emotional and physical issue you can name including:

trauma or abuse, stress or anxiety, PTSD, fears or phobias, depression, addiction, allergies, ADD/ADHD, anger management, headaches, back pains, or breathing difficulties

Even though EFT appears simple, correctly and artfully applied EFT often gets results when nothing else has worked.

Find out more about EFT and Tap4Health.

Dehydration Headache: My Personal Experience

For a number of months when I was in secondary school, I would get violent migraines each afternoon and have to go home from school. I took pain killers and often had to just go to sleep until morning. I was taken to the hospital and checked out, and I was also taught relaxation techniques yet nothing seemed to work.

Yet, when I look back now, it was simple dehydration. I lived in a hot dry environment with temperatures in the high 30C (90F) and would not drink any water from the moment I awoke until I took the damn headache pill.

So, save yourself years of pain and simply drink more water. Your brain, your body, your blood, and your appetite will thank you! For more information about the affect dehydration has on your health read Your Body's Many Cries for Water.

As you experience the benefits of this lens, please express your appreciation by clicking 5-Stars at the top of the page. You might also leave a brief note below about your experience.

Reader Feedback

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    • thetappingman lm profile image

      thetappingman lm 4 years ago

      @kimadagem: Thanks for letting me know about the link and glad you enjoyed the lens.

    • profile image

      kimadagem 4 years ago

      One more thing - the link to the 5 Start EFT DVDs is dead, I'm getting a 404 there. (I know you're moderating comments so this seemed a good way to let you know; you don't have to keep this comment if you don't want to.)

    • profile image

      kimadagem 4 years ago

      I'm sugar sensitive and get withdrawal headaches sometimes (I'm careful about consuming sweet stuff but can't always predict what I'll react to). I'm not big on pill-taking so I usually just put up with them until my system stabilizes and the headache goes away, but next time I'm going to try these techniques; I'm a former massage therapist so body-oriented methods appeal to me. Thanks for the information.

      (Also - I can second what you said about hydration, I heard that when I was in massage school. That's something else I'm careful about; 30+ years in dry Colorado taught me to always have a water bottle with me. I'm now on the humid East Coast of the US but I still fill that bottle and drink it - every day.)

    • RedSkyAtNight LM profile image

      RedSkyAtNight LM 5 years ago

      Thank you for the lens. I'm a big fighter against dehydratioin headaches.always drink water instead of taking pills!

    • kburns421 lm profile image

      kburns421 lm 5 years ago

      I believe the acupuncturist I went to did this. I will have to try it on myself as I get a lot of headaches. Thanks for the info!

    • MichelleHoffmann profile image

      Michelle Ann Hoffmann 5 years ago from River Falls, WI

      I've been having headaches and just stumbled onto 'Tapping". Your lens really has some great information about this technique... thanks! Also, you are correct about needing to drink more water...

    • Monica Ranstrom profile image

      Monica Ranstrom 5 years ago

      I went to a chiropractor who also used these techniques and it helped me a lot! Nice lens.

    • JessyGene profile image

      JessyGene 6 years ago

      interesting lens. I think I'm going to try this because I get chronic headaches

    • profile image

      cynthiamoore42 6 years ago

      For years, I'm trying to treat my migraine headache symptoms. I've an advocate of drug less way to treat migraine and this lense just proved it. Thanks!

    • healthywebsites1 profile image

      healthywebsites1 6 years ago

      i stumbled across your lens because i've been suffering from back pain and wanted to investigate holistic approaches before visiting a doctor. i'm going to practice your suggestions this evening. i also enjoyed your discussion about headaches being associated with dehydration. There is an interesting article at which discusses the symptoms and dangers of dehydration that you may find informative. Thanks again for sharing your great information.

    • howtocurecancer profile image

      howtocurecancer 6 years ago

      Blessed by a SquidAngel.

    • profile image

      hgmigraine 8 years ago

      Very interesting lens! Great information!

    • profile image

      GeneralAccount 8 years ago

      Outstanding lens! Great work.

    • profile image

      banbarak 9 years ago

      I appreciate the presentation of the lens with a clear picture to understand.

      Generally most of the people suffers from headache, so the lens provided helps them a lot.Feel free to visit my the accupuncturequest blog

    • profile image

      Tension-Headaches 9 years ago

      Excellent point about dehydration. Really good info on the EFT tapping points.

    • profile image

      blogmarketeer 9 years ago

      Hi, I found your lens when I was looking around for information about cluster headaches. My husband suffers from this condition and I will let him try this method when he has his next active period.

      If you have time, please visit my site about cluster headache treatment

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago


      I really agree with your lens, because dehydration is very important to our body,

      If you have time, check out my brand new lens on divorce lawyers Thanks!

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      Brilliant and it works.