Natural remedies for headaches

All, Health & Fitness, Medicare

If you are someone who struggles with frequent headaches, you know how much that pain can interfere with daily life. While there are a number of medications that can assist, research has also shown that dietary and lifestyle choices can have a big impact on the frequency and intensity of a person’s headaches.

Things like sleep, dehydration, nutrition and diet are sometimes underestimated but each of these factors may play a part in whether or not a person suffers from headaches.

If you are hoping for more natural remedies for this issue, these areas are all a good place to start.

Sleep: Getting an adequate amount of sleep each night plays a vital role in a person’s overall health.

When you sleep your body heals itself and rests up for a new day ahead. Without that rest your brain function is sure to suffer and it could lead to some terrible headaches as well.

Studies have shown sleep apnea may lead to frequent morning headaches while insomnia may increase the severity of headaches during the day. Check with your doctor to ensure these aren’t contributing to the problem.

Too much sleep can also be a problem for some people. The ideal amount of sleep during the night is 7 to 9 hours.

Hydration: Water is also a necessary part of life and many people go through life not getting enough of it. Luckily, this is an easy problem to fix.

Start by tracking how much water you drink in a day and then set a goal to increase it each day. There are many water bottles you can purchase that make tracking your water intake easy.

You can also increase your hydration by eating foods that have a high water content like fruits and vegetables.

Vitamins and Minerals: A healthy diet can help prevent  and even relieve headaches. In particular, ensuring you are getting enough magnesium and vitamin B and avoiding histamines.

Magnesium helps with nerve transmission and regulating blood sugar and it has been shown to decrease the frequency and severity of headaches. Adding a magnesium supplement to your diet may help prevent headaches in the future. Be sure and talk to your doctor before adding this to your diet. Too much magnesium can cause digestive issues.

Vitamin B, on the other hand, is completely safe to add to your diet. B vitamins help turn food into usable energy and they can also help to naturally reduce a headache. If you notice a headache coming on, maybe try taking a vitamin B supplement to keep it away.

Histamines have also been found to contribute to migraines for certain people. Histamine-rich foods include cheese, beer, wine and cured meats. If you suffer from frequent migraines it may be worth a try to cut your consumption of these foods.

If your doctor believes your diet is contributing to your frequent headaches they may recommend an elimination diet. Sometimes cutting out certain foods can help identify food sensitivities and intolerances and help cut down on frequent pain.

Other Natural Remedies to Try

If your headaches aren’t frequent or consistent, you may want to try a natural remedy before taking a pill. Here are a few ideas:

Cold Compress: Sometimes your body needs a bit of rest and a cold compress can help. Simply fill a leak-proof bag with ice, cover it in a towel and let it rest on your head or the back of your neck until the pain subsides.

Essential Oils: Smells from some essential oils can have a calming effect on the body. Try peppermint, lavender or eucalyptus for your headaches. Along these same lines, avoid any very strong smells as these can cause pressure to build.

Caffeine: While too much caffeine can cause headaches, sometimes caffeine can also help. Sip on a cup of tea or coffee to help increase your alertness and keep a headache at bay.

Practice Mindfulness: Headaches are often caused by stressful situations. Being able to stay in the moment and take deep breaths can help. Practicing regular meditation or yoga can have very positive effects.