Studies show that any time the temperature rises or drops 9 degrees, our chances for getting a headache increase by 12%. This is always something that is more likely during the winter months. On average, women get more headaches than men, so it’s important to take good care of yourself and modify your lifestyle if you’re prone to headaches this time of year.
Work, travel, and staying out too late are all seasonal stressors that can cause headaches. The root of headaches usually stem from a variety of conditions often remedied with simple lifestyle adjustments and natural treatments. Instead of reaching for the advil, pay closer attention to what is triggering the headache. When we take time to slow down, center ourselves and get perspective on the situation, the answers often surface.
While it’s true that natural remedies might take longer to “kick in”, over the long haul your body won’t come to rely on pills every time something hurts. It’s important that we learn to listen to our bodies and recognize that a headache is a sign that something is off. Here are a few natural remedies to try:
Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint essential oil helps relax muscles, calm the mind and soothe pain. Apply a few drops to your hairline, temples, jaw or neck and massage into your skin. Drink some cool water and take time to relax with your eyes closed.
This may sound obvious, but most of us aren’t drinking enough water every day. The general rule is to drink half of your body weight in ounces daily. And if you’re exercising, you need to drink more. Coffee, alcohol and drinks loaded with sugar dehydrate the body as you might have experienced from a caffeine headache or hangover. To get yourself on track, start the morning with 8-16 ounces of water at least 20 minutes before breakfast. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon to your water to help wake you up and support digestion. Be sure to carry water with you everywhere so it becomes a habit .
Feverfew is a medicinal herb that has been shown to be an effective remedy for migraine headaches. Doctors believe that during a migraine the vessels in our head expand and press on the nerves. Feverfew is a powerful anti-inflammatory which relaxes the vessels, reducing pressure on the nerves. It also works well as a preventative treatment. Feverfew can be consumed as an herbal tea or in supplement form.
In Eastern traditions hands-on healing like acupressure has been used for centuries to relieve pain and balance energy. Acupressure is an effective technique where pressure is applied to specific points on the body that correspond to different organs and systems. This increase in energy releases which allows our body to naturally relieve pain.
Here are three acupressure points to get you started:
Forehead: Take your index finger and place it right between your eyebrows. Apply medium pressure there, breathe deeply and hold for one minute. Release and repeat for as many minutes as you wish.
Hands: Apply pressure to the webbing of your index finger and thumb with the opposite hand. Breathe deeply and hold the pressure for one minute. Switch hands. Release and repeat for as many minutes as you wish.
Foot: Apply pressure to the space between the big toe and second toe on top of the foot. Hold, and breathe for one minute. Switch feet. Release and repeat for as many minutes as you wish.
What are your favorite remedies? Please share, I would love to know.