Treat the cause rather than merely the symptoms of your pain
Treating your headache with natural remedies can heal your body at the actual point of pain. Rather than masking the pain with chemical pain relievers, finding the source of the pounding or piercing is a better way to end it. You could be experiencing a tension headache or a nutritional deficiency. Whatever the cause, addressing your body’s pain signal with the following remedies could be your ticket out of suffering.
It sounds so simple: drink water. Yet up to 75 percent of Americans suffer from chronic dehydration. Different people have various levels of dehydration that will trigger a headache. Not everyone will develop the classic symptoms of dehydration – yellow urine, increased thirst, irritability, fatigue. In fact, you may be dehydrated long before you notice any of these signs.
The best plan is to faithfully follow the guidelines for water intake by keeping a reusable water bottle filled wherever you go.
The Mayo Clinic reports that the recommendations for women and men’s hydration are different. Men need about 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids, while women require 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) each day.
Supplement with magnesium
Lack of sufficient magnesium is another cause of headaches that can be attacked at the source. Many people are magnesium deficient without realizing it because the signs and symptoms – including nausea, vomiting and fatigue – are easily attributed to other causes.
Dr. Sergey A. Dzugan, recommends magnesium citrate for headaches caused by magnesium deficiency because it’s best absorbed by the body. A powdered supplement of 400-800 milligrams (mg) at bedtime, or 200-400 mg in the morning and 400 mg at bedtime is recommended.
You already know that sleep is essential for health, and many of us aren’t getting the seven to nine hours recommended by the National Sleep Foundation. Research demonstrates a clear link between lack of sleep and headaches. Chronic lack of sleep results in a heightened nervous system, which can lead to headaches or recurring migraines.
Maintain a regular sleep schedule, avoiding distractions such as noise, light and blue light from electronics prior to bedtime.
Supplement with vitamin B
You may find a solution to your migraines in B-2 supplements. While the National Headache Foundation cites that high B-2 supplementation can stop migraines, they warn that you should not be start such a regimen without the supervision of your doctor. For instance, at 400 mg of the recommended dose, this is 200 times the recommended daily dose of riboflavin.
Check your diet
Food allergies or intolerances can cause headaches, as can high-sugar or high-carb diets. If you feel like you notice your headaches coming on after you eat, it’s worth doing a simple elimination diet to see if you find relief. Foods that commonly trigger migraine headaches include MSG, meats containing nitrates, dairy, chocolate and peanut butter. After removing these from your diet, you can slowly reintroduce them one-by-one to see if your headaches come back.
Massage and stretch
One of the most enjoyable ways to prevent or treat tension headaches are with massages or stretches. Many of us work in environments where we sit much of the day. Often our necks, shoulders and back can become knotted as a result, leading to head pain. Chronic stress and worry can also lead to continuously knotted muscles and headaches.
A daily routine of stretches at your desk can reduce the number of headaches you get or prevent them entirely.
Massage is also effective for tension headache relief. A study in the American Journal of Public Health found that massage therapy geared at relieving tension headache pain resulted in significant improvement after only one week.
As we know, meditation is another effective technique to relieve stress and tension. Meditating can be an effective solution to relieve your tension headaches.
It’s empowering to consider how many natural options we have to prevent and treat head pain. Keep track of what solutions you try and their results over time. Begin with simple, healthy preventative measures such as getting the right amount of sleep and water. This should put you on the right track in reducing or eliminating your headaches at their source.