Everyone gets those pesky headaches that prevent us from doing the things we love or need to do. Some even turn into migraines and cause other problems as well. I am writing this post because I have recently had this experience again and it last 3 days causing me to miss work.
For some, you pop some Tylenol, ibuprofen, or Excedrin as soon as one starts so that it (hopefully) does not get any worse and maybe goes away. Some people even require prescription medications for there headaches. I have made a list of holistic, natural remedies for these headaches so maybe we won’t have to depend so heavily on these medications that make us feel better. And they will be all in one spot so next time I get that awful headache I can just go down the list of these natural remedies before trying western medicine and see which one works for me. I am not a doctor and I am by no means suggesting that you not medicate if needed. You do what is best for you. I am simply supplying you with other options.
- Drink a glass of water. Dehydration headaches occur because the brain, which is 80% water, shrinks and pulls away from the skull. Also when dehydrated, the blood vessels dilate to get more blood flow to the brain which can cause inflammation and swelling. (Sound painful?!?!) Statistics have found that 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. So chances are high that this may be the cause of your headache which is why it is number 1.
**Fun fact: Most people should drink at least half their body weight in ounces of water per day. (Ex: if you weight 100 lbs you should drink 50 oz of water per day). This increases if you drink coffee, tea, soda, exercise, or sweat. And this does not apply if you have kidney or heart problems (or infants of course).
2. Do some yoga! That’s right. Yoga can help relieve headaches by helping blood flow to the brain more easily and relieving tension that can cause headaches.
Try this yoga sequence. (I really like Yoga with Adrienne!)
3. Drink some caffeinated tea. Caffeine can both be a trigger and inhibitor of headaches. Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, which is why it helps with a headache. The blood vessels dilate prior to and causing your headache or migraine, so caffeine constricts those same blood vessels which is why it can help with headaches
4. Try some essential oils. There are many causes of headaches and so there are many essential oil treatments as well.
º For general headache with no apparent cause: combine 3 drops of lavender and 1 drop of peppermint into one bottle and then add 1 drop of the combination diluted in 1 drop of carrier oil and massage around the temples and the base of the skull along the hairline. (This is my essential oil go to for headaches).
º For nervous headache/tension headache: combine 3 drops of lavender and 1 drop of chamomile roman in a bottle and then add 1 drop of the combination to 1 drop of a carrier oil and massage around the base of the skull along the hairline.
Also massage over the solar plexus (upper abdomen) in a clockwise direction using 3-5 drops of the following blend diluted in 5 mL of carrier oil: 1 drop geranium, 2 drops lemon, 3 drops lavender.
º For headache caused by sinusitis there are 3 combinations that can be used.
Steam Inhalation: Blend 3 drops rosemary, 1 drop thyme linalol, 1 drop peppermint, 1 drop geranium; place 3 drops in a bowl of hot water and inhale the steam through the nose with the eyes tightly closed.
Tissue Inhalation: Blend 2 drops rosemary, 1 drop geranium, and 1 drop eucalyptus radiata; place 1 drop of the blend on a tissue (or cotton ball) and inhale as needed.
Massage: Blend 5 drops rosemary, 5 drops geranium, 2 drops eucalyptus radiata, and 1 drop peppermint; dilute 3-5 drops of the combination with 5 mL of carrier oil. Massage starting around the neck and moving behind and in front of the ears. (Be very careful to avoid the eyes).
***For more information on essential oils, leave a comment or send me a message.***
5. Take some magnesium. A low magnesium level has been linked to migraines and most people do not get the recommended 400 mg per day. Foods high in magnesium are dark chocolate (an excuse to eat chocolate…), avocados, nuts, seeds, fatty fish, legumes, bananas, leafy greens, whole grains.
6. Take a B-Complex vitamin. Vitamins B2, B6, and B12 have all been linked to preventing headaches. Taking a B-complex vitamin will get you these three and more. Vitamin B is a water soluble vitamin so overdose is very rare. I think I am going to start taking one!
7. Take a detox bath. Relaxing in a hot bath can help relieve any tension that is causing your headache. Also if you add epsom salt your body can absorb some magnesium (yay multitasking!). Throw in 2 cups apple cider vinegar and 1 cup of baking soda and it will help draw out toxins from your body and increase your immunity.
8. Use a compress. If you don’t know whether to use a warm or cold compress, try both and see which one feels better. With my last headache, I thought cold would feel better but warm actually did.
9. Reflexology. A good ‘ole massage of your toes could help with that headache. According to this study, the participants reported that the reflexology helped or cured their headaches over the 3 month period and some were able to stop medications completely.
10. If you are into chakras and crystals then you can try some selenite, amethyst, and clear quartz. Go here and learn how to use these crystals.
11. Cut out gluten. This one will not be a quick fix but I am adding it because I did not know there was a link to gluten sensitivity and headaches and I am betting that most of you didn’t either. Studies have shown that even though someone doesn’t have celiac disease, they can still have gluten sensitivity that shows up as headaches or migraines. So if you get these frequently then maybe that is something to think about.
***Not all essential oils are created equal. I promote doTERRA essential oils. You can contact me if you have any questions or would like to know where to get these.***