We all have problems with headaches, and many of us immediately use pills to get rid of them. Before you do this, try a few natural ways.
Tension headaches are the most common type. They occur when the muscles of the scalp, face or neck tighten and press nerves, and they can cause mild or intense pain in your head, neck, and behind your eyes. Possible causes are stress, poor posture (especially the back and neck) and hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
Other types of headaches are migraines. These are vascular headaches (associated with the expansion and contraction of blood vessels) that are characterized by pulsating and sharp pain in the head. People suffering from migraines sometimes have symptoms such as tingling sensation, a feeling of numbness in various parts of the body, blurred vision, bright spots and flashes, anxiety, fatigue and inability to think straight.
For immediate relief
Ice – This recommended Dr. Lawrence Robbins and Dr. Fred Sheftell, co-founder of the Center for Headache in Stamford. In acute attacks, it brings instant relief, alleviating the pressure of swollen blood vessels, blocking the transmission of pain in the brain and reducing the rate of metabolism, which reduces muscle contraction. You can take the ice cubes out of the freezer, wrap them in a thin paper towel and place on the sore spot. There are plastic bags that you can fill with water and freeze, so they are always ready for use. Hold the Ice on the painful spot for a while, then remove and after a while hold again. This procedure should not be performed for longer than 20 minutes per treatment.
Essential mint oil – Rub a little bit of this oil on the temples. Its effect can be improved if you combine it with essential oils of lavender, eucalyptus and rosemary.
Acupressure Point – Between the thumb and index finger there is a point that is associated with headaches. Using your thumb and forefinger of the opposite hand, squeeze this area until you feel a mild discomfort. Hold the pressure for about 20 seconds then release.
Nutrition and lifestyle
Eat healthy, using only natural food that includes fresh and cooked vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds.
Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day. This does not include sodas, coffee and alcohol.
Physical activity each day – walking, jogging, bike, sports…
Dedicate at least 10-15 minutes to relaxation techniques each day – deep breathing, yoga, visualization, meditation.
Avoid sugar (except fruit), alcohol and caffeine, or at least reduce the amount you consume.
Some other natural remedies
Some naturalists advise taking magnesium supplements, 250-500 mg daily for tension headaches, and twice as much for migraines.
They also recommend daily intake of: vitamin C 500-1000 mg, 200-400 IU of vitamin E, and one teaspoon of ground flaxseed.