Many people experience headaches, which can come during times of stress, upon awakening, or even at random. Besides popping some Advil or Tylenol, there are a number of natural ways to reduce or get rid of headaches. Here are 10 ways to naturally relieve headaches:
- Try drinking herbal teas. With the combination of hot water and the herbs in the tea, herbal teas can be effective in reducing your symptoms. Peppermint tea and chamomile tea are some of the more well known herbal teas for treating headaches.
- Get a massage. By loosening the muscles of the upper shoulders and neck, it can significantly reduce the tension in your head since your muscles are all connected. You can also try massaging your own temples and forehead.
- Try reflexology. This is an alternative therapy that involves applying pressure to certain points of the feet and hand. While this technique does not work for me, some people swear that it relieves their symptoms. Try pressing the area on your hand between your forefinger and thumb for roughly one minute.
- Find out the trigger of your headache. Certain people have trigger foods, which can aggravate or cause headaches. Some common trigger foods are cheese, chocolate, eggs, fatty foods, alcohol, caffeine, red meat, and certain additives. Other triggers for headaches include eye strain, staring at the computer for too long, tobacco smoke, stress, hunger, and dehydration. Once you figure out the trigger, you can stop your headaches before they even start.
- Do some deep breathing. This is especialy effective if your headaches are related to stress. Deep breathing helps unlock tense muscles, lowers blood pressure, and helps reduce pain.
- Take a nap. This simple tip may be all that is needed to relieve a headache. Besides allowing you to avoid bright lights which can intensify headaches, naps can help pass the time until your headache is gone. Naps can also help if your headaches are caused by lack of sleep.
- Use a cold/hot pack. Cold packs can help with relieving and numbing the pain, while hot packs can help reduce tension. Some people report that alternating cold packs and hot packs provides the most relief, while others prefer either cold packs or hot packs alone. I prefer laying down with a hot towel over my forehead.
- Drink water or a sports drink. Many headaches are actually caused by dehydration as a result of drinking too many caffeinated beverages or too much alcohol. Water is the easiest wasy to stay hydrated, and you can also try a sports drink to help replenish electrolytes.
- Exercise. Whether you run, jog, walk, swim, etc., the body produces endorphins, which are natural painkillers. Try a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise. It is best to perform moderate aerobic exercise because strenuous exercise may make your headache worse.
- Try a chiropractor. Through a series of manipulations of the back and neck, chiropractors have been able to help headache sufferers experience reduction in headaches without any medication.
It is best to consult your doctor for an accurate diagnosis of your problem, and these tips should not be considered a replacement for receiving proper medical advice.