Do You Regularly Suffer from Headaches? Here are 8 Tips to Help You

Added February 15, 2011, Under: Environment, Headaches & Migraines, Health

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There is a lot you can do to treat a headache without resorting to over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Alternative treatments are gaining popularity worldwide.

Headaches are one of the most common of all human ailments

At least 75% of Americans suffering from a headache at least once a year. Although most headaches are easily resolved, some 45 million people suffer from such chronic or severe headaches that their lives are seriously affected.

You can treat headaches naturally with an essential oils natural headache product but you can also often help your headache go away by trying out the following tips:

1. Shrug your shoulders – while in a sitting or standing position, make the effort to relax all the muscles in your body. Then take a deep breath in, contract your shoulder muscles, pulling your shoulders upwards toward your ears. Hold this for several seconds before all muscle tenses, at the same time letting your shoulders drop quickly. Repeat this process several times.

2. Stress makes us take short shallow breaths but this raises the level of carbon dioxide in your body and dilates the blood vessels in your head which can even lead to headache pain. So if you are stressed, inhale slowly through the nose, count up to 5 before exhaling slowly and count to 5 again. If you can repeat this up to some 12 times, it will help with the headache.

3. Try applying either heat or cold to the painful part of the head. Some people find heat more helpful than cold and vice versa. An ice pack should be wrapped in cloth first. A packet of frozen peas in a towel works well but heat helps muscles to relax more quickly than cold does.

4. Acupressure is when you use your finger tips to put pressure on your temples. Place your index and the middle fingers of both your hands on the outside edges of your eyebrows and on your temples. Then rub your fingers in small circles with a fair amount of pressure for several seconds, followed by pressing your fingers and holding for 4 to 5 seconds before releasing and repeating the process several times.

5. Daily exercise is a good headache preventative while yoga is excellent for frequent tension headaches because relaxation and stress reduction are the primary goals of the practice of yoga. Another way to reduce stress and eliminate a headache, is to take a brisk walk. Exercise is also a great way to improve the production of endorphins which are the brain’s natural painkillers. Dealing with stress successfully and therefore avoiding headaches often just means giving yourself some time just for you.

6. If you can go to bed and get up at the same time every day (even on weekends and during your vacation) this will help to avoid upsetting your sensitive nervous system. This is another way to avoid headaches as any change to that nervous system whether external or internal can be a factor in the onset of headaches. Too much, too little or disrupted sleep are common triggers of headaches.

7. Skipping meals, eating irregularly or munching on fast foods can lead to blood glucose levels dropping and headaches. Plan healthy meals with appetizing snacks for those emergency occasions.

8. Many people are unaware that being dehydrated is a major trigger for headaches. So make sure you get your 8 glasses of water every day. 75% of Americans are dehydrated so are at permanent risk of headaches and many other health problems.

Although there can be some overlapping, there are two classes of headaches – primary where the headache is not caused by another disease and secondary where the headache can be due to an underlying disease. A sinus headache is an example of a secondary headache where the pain is usually behind the forehead and/or cheekbones and caused by a medical problem in the sinuses.

There are 3 main types of primary headaches

1.  Tension headaches (where the pain is like a band squeezing the head) are usually associated with stress, tiredness or too much or too little sleep. In addition if you assume a position that tenses your neck or head muscles for long periods of time, this can also lead to a tension headache.

2.  Migraine headaches where pain, nausea and changes in your vision are typical. There can be moderate to severe throbbing pain occurring on one or both sides of the head. Migraines are often accompanied by other symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, blurred vision as well as sensitivity to light, sound, strong odors, and even movement. A migraine may last anything from two to 48 hours and can occur as often as 2 to 4 times per month.

3.  Cluster headaches where the pain is in and around one eye. These severe headaches are characterized by the pain centering around one eye, often with a watery eye and nasal congestion occurring on the same side. A cluster headache can last anything from 15 minutes to 4 hours and recur as often as several times in a day. Cluster headaches come in groups of attacks which may last from two weeks to three months. There is then a break in time before another set of cluster headaches.

Go the natural route

You don’t want to suffer the pain and discomfort of headaches so instead of reaching for that over-the-counter headache remedy every time, learn to understand what is causing your headache and treat it the natural way.

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