Holistic Suggestions for Headaches
Headaches are one of the number one pain complaints that adults suffer with, but fortunately there are a great deal of holistic remedies that can be beneficial in the prevention and management of headaches. Below is a list of holistic solutions thought to be beneficial for headaches.
Disclaimer: This article is not to be used to diagnose, treat or manage any condition. Do not start or stop any treatment without first consulting with your healthcare provider.
Lavender and Peppermint.
A study performed by European Neurology found that 92 out of the 129 participants struggling with headaches saw significant symptom relief when they were treated with lavender.
A common holistic headache remedy is lavender essential oil and peppermint essential oil blended in a carrier oil and applied topically to the forehead.
For more information on using essential oils for holistic remedies and proper dilution instructions, you can listen to the podcast episode below.
HYDRATION & NUTRITION
Being dehydrated is one of the number one causes of headaches in adults, so it is important to drink adequate water throughout the day. It is also important to avoid triggering foods that may induce headaches. For people with food sensitivities or allergies, certain foods need to be avoided in order to reduce headaches. It is recommended you keep a health journal to track if any foods or beverages could be triggering your headaches.
Herbal remedies can sometimes be a great alternative to pharmaceutical medications, but also be advised that just because a substance is natural does not mean it is harmless and will not cause side effects. Always research anything you put into your body, this includes medications, herbs and natural remedies.
The following herbs are thought to be beneficial for headaches:
- Ginger is naturally an anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial substance. It has been used to treat the onset of migraine headaches. Phytotherapy Research released a study that showed that ginger treated headaches in some patients as well as the medication, sumatriptan. To read the study click here- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23657930
- Basil isn’t just for seasoning your traditional Italian dishes! When used as a tonic, basil has analgesic and warming effects on the body, which may help inflammation and pain caused by migraines. It can also be used as a natural muscle relaxant, which may help soothe fibromyalgia pain and ease menstrual cramping.
- The herb Butterbur has natural anti-inflammatory processes which relax the blood vessels in the brain and works as a natural beta-blocker to encourage normal blood flow. It has been used as a natural migraine preventative. Use caution if you are on any blood thinning medications with this herb as it may cause additional issues.
- Also known as medieval aspirin or Wild chamomile, this herb has been used to treat migraine headaches since the dark ages. It has natural analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties and is a mild tranquilizer.
- Ancient Greek and Roman cultures used Valerian to treat headaches and insomnia. It has a natural calming effect on the body and is useful in treating tension and stress related headaches. Valerian can be used as a tincture, taken in capsule form or diffused as an essential oil.
If you have frequent headaches, please alert your healthcare provider and do not start any holistic remedy or diet without first consulting your physician.