Headache Remedies: What to Do to Overcome Headaches Anytime, Anywhere
People deal with headaches daily, and despite their popularity, no one pays attention to them. They are common and can be uncomfortable, mild, or even unbearable – ready to disrupt your everyday activities.
There are more types of headaches out there, and each has its own causes, particularities, and remedies – tension headaches represent the most popular option.
Migraines are more intense and can be quite severe, while cluster headaches tend to be more painful.
The good news is plenty of medications are produced to relieve headaches and their unpleasant symptoms, not to mention supplements – both natural and artificial. At the same time, there are natural remedies worth some consideration too. Here is everything you need to know.
Table of Contents
What is a headache?
It is pointless to jump into headache remedies if you have no clue what this sensation is about. The headache pain – or discomfort – tends to target the head or the face. Sometimes, it goes all over the head – from back to front.
Migraine headaches are just some types of headaches, but the list is way longer than that – tension headaches are more common, for example. Headache symptoms depend on the type of headache you suffer from.
Sinus headaches are also among the frequent headaches. You get the point – to relieve headache pain, be it a tension headache or a different type, you must first figure out what kind of headache you have. They vary in terms of intensity, not to mention the location or how they start.
Tissue in your brain does not have nerve fibers that can detect pain, so the pain is not felt straight away. However, other parts are affected, and this is when migraine symptoms become noticeable – nerves that reach the scalp, nerves targeting the throat or face, muscles around the shoulders or neck, and so on.
Even blood vessels can indicate a headache. To get rid of a headache, try to identify it first. On a positive note, you can get headache relief without doing anything – maybe just calm down a bit and wait a few minutes. However, the lack of treatment may also lead to severe headaches.
The tension type headache is the most popular one – it can be handled with a cold compress, but you may also require medication. You will experience pain on both sides, and it goes in slowly. The main is not exquisite, but it can get moderate in intensity.
The migraine is a headache medically reviewed and brings in even more symptoms – nausea and vomiting may also be included. Cluster headaches are quite severe. More things can trigger headaches, and they may last for months if left untreated.
While the basic issue can go away without too much stress, you may need to treat headaches medically if they persist and aggravate with time – pain relief drugs and pain medications represent the most common type of headache remedy.
To relieve headaches, you may have to change some lifestyle factors too – focus on the causes as well.
What are the headache symptoms ?
Whether you are after medications or natural remedies, identifying the type of headache you suffer from is mandatory to find the best acute treatment. Sure, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs will work for most of them, but a natural remedy is quite effective to treat it.
Tension headaches bring in a slow onset of the issue, pain on both sides, and dull pain. Sometimes, headaches occur in the neck too. Such headaches are less likely to be severe but can be quite annoying.
Migraines used to be treated with traditional Chinese medicine – lots of solutions. The treatment depends on the phase – there are more phases, with the headache phase being the most difficult one, as it may also include sensitivity to light. Nausea and vomiting are common too.
Cluster headaches may also bring pain behind the eye, swollen eyelids, and even nasal congestion. They can be caused by numerous factors – including a simple lifestyle change, such as caffeine withdrawal. Physical therapy and over-the-counter medications might be needed.
Learning some relaxation techniques is excellent when dealing with mild to moderate headaches. Other than that, it is worth noting that the symptoms of headaches are similar to those of a wide variety of medical affections.
If anything feels weird, get in touch with a doctor. Otherwise, home remedies like essential oils will do.
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What are the causes of a headache?
To reduce headaches, simple treatment is not always enough. Sometimes, you also need to annihilate the causes of headaches. You may need adequate sleep or perhaps find a pressure point to get rid of that common migraine. All in all, identifying causes will also help you prevent headaches.
Normally, headaches are defined as primary or secondary.
The primary headache means the actual headache is your medical problem. Of course, other factors might be involved – specific health conditions or perhaps herbal tea based on something you are allergic to. Medicines, hormonal changes, and dehydration can contribute to the problem too.
The secondary headache is related to a medical condition. You cannot prevent migraines with some lavender essential oil, an ice pack, or if you apply pressure with cold compresses. The underlying medical affection needs to be treated too.
This issue could be an injury, a sinus infection, a tooth infection, or perhaps eye-related problems.
Assuming the secondary headache has a more obvious cause, what causes the primary one then? A classic cold or the flu can be responsible for temporary headaches. Get rid of them by treating the issue – the cold.
Stress is another common cause of headaches – a stressful day at work will most likely give you headaches.
Alcohol acts as a cause, too – too much alcohol will lead to headaches. While there are more obvious causes, a bad posture will also cause headaches, apart from the pain in the back and shoulders.
A bad posture is an underlying cause for many other issues.
You will experience migraines due to eyesight problems, not having healthy food regularly, not having enough fluids daily, taking lots of painkillers for other conditions, or even during a period.
What are the different headache remedies?
There are many remedies for headaches, from amino acid or B vitamins to more natural approaches – like cold compresses – and even specific programs to help you overcome these conditions.
Here are the top-rated options out there:
Dehydration is among the common causes of tension headaches, but the lack of fluids may also cause migraines. Luckily, a few glasses of water are more than enough to handle the problem – it may take anywhere between half an hour and a few hours, depending on how dehydrated you are.
Hydrating will improve other functions in your body too.
Magnesium is often sold as a supplement over the counter. People with migraines tend to suffer from a magnesium deficiency as well. Therefore, supplying your body with this mineral will likely prevent and ameliorate these affections.
However, it is not for everyone – some supplements can cause digestive issues. Take a smaller dose.
Change your diet
Food intolerances and allergies are likely to cause headaches too, yet most people are unaware of these problems. Try an elimination diet to figure out what might cause migraines. Citrus fruits, chocolate, alcohol, coffee, and cheese are among the most popular triggers.
Cheese in a common form is not that bad, but aged cheeses could be an issue.
Acupuncture can provide relief against more types of headaches. The traditional Chinese technique should be done by a professional, though. According to scientific references, you may feel a numbing effect. Moreover, most people require more than just one session.
The best part about it? It is natural and has no adverse reactions.
Get some B vitamins
B vitamins are extremely important for the good functionality of your body. According to peer-reviewed studies, some vitamins in the complex have soothing effects against headaches. B2, B6, B12, and folate are more effective at reducing headache symptoms.
Get a complex with all vitamins and take them according to the instructions.
There are various programs that aim to work for anyone, regardless of the types of headaches you suffer from.
Migraine and Headache Program is an example of a holistic approach aimed at both acute and chronic sufferers and will target all sorts of headaches.
The program is quite diversified and includes a diary, tips, and ideas to improve your lifestyle, stress management solutions, guides to manage pain, and so on. It teaches you how to relax certain muscles and comes with a supportive community behind it – share ideas or ask questions.
It costs less than having painkillers regularly, and it provides lifelong relief.
Yoga could help
Yoga helps relieve stress, apart from improving your flexibility. As a direct consequence, it will also ameliorate all sorts of aches and pains. Yoga regularly will reduce the intensity of your headaches, as well as their frequency.
You do not necessarily need a trainer – get a soft towel or a yoga mat and do it at home.
Get some caffeine
Beverages rich in caffeine are likely to provide relief when you feel a headache kicking in. Caffeine will also work on your mood, not to mention constricting blood vessels – in this particular case, these effects will be extremely positive against the symptoms of headaches.
But then, if you are addicted to coffee, tea, or other beverages rich in caffeine, and you try to withdraw from this substance, headaches may also represent a withdrawal symptom. Avoid a sudden stop, but reduce the quantity regularly.
Other ideas to prevent or ameliorate headaches include:
- Limit the alcohol consumption
- Get at least eight hours of sleep per night
- Avoid foods with high amounts of histamine
- Use essential oils
- Use a cold or hot compress
- Get a coenzyme Q10 supplement
- Avoid nitrites and nitrates
- Get some ginger powder and make a cup of tea per day
>> Related Article: 12 Best Remedies For Migraine Headaches
Headaches are extremely popular and tend to affect everyone at some point or another. They are normally acute and will go away once you calm down and eliminate the trigger – they often go away without any treatment whatsoever.
While there are many drugs your doctor can prescribe if pains are severe, most of these medications come with adverse reactions. Plus, some of them can be addictive. This is why everyone recommends a more natural approach first. The Migraine and Headache Program is a full guide on what to do.
You can make many lifestyle changes to keep headaches and migraines under control – some of them more effective than others, depending on the circumstances. From dietary changes and stress management to exercise and sleep.
Headache Remedies FAQs
How is a headache diagnosed?
Your doctor will take you through a series of questions to identify what headache you suffer from, what the causes are, and what the optimal treatment is. You will be asked about the frequency, location, duration, changes in your behavior, sleeping issues, stress, and head injuries, among many others.
Are there any tests done to diagnose headaches?
Apart from interrogating you about certain aspects related to your headaches, your doctor may also take blood tests to identify specific deficiencies, but you may also need more advanced sinus X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging – MRI – or a computed tomography scan – also known as CAT.
Are there any medications I can take against headaches?
Most specialists recommend natural approaches – dietary or sleep changes, lifestyle changes, stress management solutions, exercise, and so on, pretty much everything you can find in The Migraine and Headache Program. As for drugs, doctors prescribe abortive, rescue, and prevention medicines.
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Author: Vanessa Richards
Vanessa is a mom of 3 lovely children and a software geek. Outside of her career as a health and wellness instructor. She enjoys writing and researching on topics such as finance, software, health and culinary.