Headache is one such type of pain that one suffers from because of innumerable causes and you might get headache while counting it. Generally, mild headaches do not affect your work life and sometimes even disappear unknowingly but severe headaches may give unbearable pain and often the pain turns into suffering.
There are a lot of types of headaches with tension being the most common factor. Cluster headaches are painful and happen in ‘clusters’ or groups, while migraines are a moderate-to-severe type of headaches.
But for most headaches which are not because of a disease, you don’t need to buy a pack of over-the-counter medicines and some easily available and natural remedies will help you out.
Home remedies to treat a headache
1. Drink water
Studies have shown that chronic dehydration is a common cause of tension, migraines and headaches. The most dehydrated ones will get the benefit of drinking water as their headaches will start to lessen its intensity within 30 minutes to three hours.
Dehydration can worsen your concentration and cause irritability which can worsen the symptoms.
So to avoid dehydration-led headaches, drink plenty of water and consume foods that are rich in water.
2. Herbal tea
Along with providing the advantages of herbs, these types of tea also fulfil the water requirements.
One can try various kinds of herbal tea in case of a headache. Ginger tea may help with migraines. Ginger tea also treats the symptoms of nausea and vomiting that are commonly associated with headaches.
Other teas to get relief from headaches include chamomile, lavender and peppermint.
3. Sleep, sleep, sleep!
Sleep deprivation is one of the major causes of headaches. Also, getting good sleep or nap, if suffering from a headache, provides good relief. A headache can be triggered by either less or excess of sleep. The idea is to get sound sleep and this means sleeping somewhere close to 7-9 hours.
Drinking a beverage with caffeine such as a coffee or a soda also helps with a headache. Some of the headache medicines contain substances such as caffeine.
A study revealed that caffeine has the properties of reducing symptoms of headaches due to tension or migraine. Caffeine causes relaxation in the blood vessels which improves circulation and wipes out tension.
However, don’t consume too much of caffeine as its withdrawal may generate its own headache.
5. Hot or cold compress
Just simply use an ice bag and put it on the affected area in the forehead or neck. This will constrict the blood vessels and reduce inflammation. It can temporarily give relief from headaches.
A study found that applying an ice bag in the neck for 30 minutes greatly helped people with migraines.
When faced by headaches due to tensions, applying a heating pad on the forehead will relax the muscles and provide relief.
An alternative could be a tepid bath. One can also apply a heated towel in the affected area for treating headaches.
6. Peppermint oil
Peppermint oil opens up clogged blood vessels which cause headaches. It also contains methanol oil that regulates blood flow in the body. Mix three drops of peppermint oil in one tablespoon almond oil. You can also mix some water and a few drops of peppermint. Apply this solution in your temple or back of the neck. One can also apply crushed peppermint leaves on the forehead
7. Lavender oil
Apart from its beautiful aroma, lavender oil also acts as an essential remedy to alleviate headaches. Lavender oil is also very effective in treating migraines. Apply lavender oil on the upper lips, inhale it and it will help in reducing migraine pains and its symptoms.
In case of headaches, you can also add lavender oil in a tissue and inhale it for a while. One can also add in two cups of boiled water, two drops of lavender oil. Inhaling the steam of this solution also treats headaches.
8. Relaxation techniques, such as meditation, deep breathing
Relaxation techniques are also very good at tackling stress and anxiety during headaches. Practise some methods such as deep-belly breathing and guided meditation for reducing the pain caused by headaches.
Cinnamon is very effective to treat headaches. To try this method, grind cinnamon sticks and convert it into a powder. Add some water and make a thick paste out of it. Now apply it on the temples and forehead for 30 minutes. Then rinse it with lukewarm water.
Exercise maintains the blood circulation in the body which reduces the chances of getting a headache. Some stretching exercise like moving chin up and down, left and ride and rotating the neck in both directions also relax neck muscles.
Some studies have shown that people doing physical activities faced lesser risks of getting a headache.