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How To Get Rid Of A Headache Without Medicine

How To Get Rid Of A Headache Without Medicine

We have all had those days when we feel weighed down by a persistent headache. These headaches can be so bothersome that they make even the most mundane and simple tasks feel daunting and impossible. Common causes of headaches include stress, tension, restlessness, sinus problems, migraines, lack of sleep and dehydration. Medical treatment may at times be necessary, but on other occasions alternative remedies can prove to be highly beneficial. Natural home remedies can provide you with instant pain relief that will leaving feeling like you can face the rest of your day purposefully. Here are 12 natural remedies that will help you get rid of a headache.

Apart from the ways to get rid of a headache, you may also want to know more about the headache you’re suffering from:

Tension Headache: Understanding Of The Most Common Headache

Cluster Headaches: How To Deal With The Worst Headache

Sinus Headache: Symptoms, Causes And Natural Reliefs

Mom Tips: How To Relive Headaches During Pregnancy

1. Water

drink water

    Often headaches are caused by dehydration. This type of headache can be treated by simply rehydrating your body. You can drink a glass of water when you first experience the symptoms of a headache and continue taking sips throughout the day. You may also like to try drinking a sports drinks. Sports drinks contain electrolytes which can help relieve tension and rehydrate the body. It is important to avoid drinks such as alcohol and coffee as these types of drinks can further dehydrate the body.

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    2. Try Ice or Hot Pack

    heat pack

      If you have a headache that is caused by sinus problems, then a cold compress is a great solution. The ice pack, when placed on your forehead, will numb the area and thus stop the pain. You can make an ice pack by wrapping some ice cubs in a thin towel.  You can also use a bag of frozen vegetables, but never apply ice directly on your skin. Hold the ice back to your head for a few minutes.

      Using a heat back will help relax tense muscles, so if you are suffering from a stress headache then a heat pack is a great solution. You can apply a hot water bag to the back of your neck or you can fill a tub with hot water and put your hands in it for 10-15 minutes. If you suffer from chronic headaches, then you may want to make a habit of dipping your legs in a bucket filled with hot water for 10 minutes before bed. Hot foot bath can improve our circulation and remove the blockage in the nasal passage so it is especially useful for headache caused by sinusitis.[1]

      3.  Niacin (Vitamin B3)

      niacin

        Niacin (Vitamin B3) rich foods are effective in the treatment of headaches and migraines. A study published by the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine in 2003 found that niacin facilitates blood flow to the head by expanding blocked arteries.[2] Pain should subsite a few minutes after taking niacin. Niacin can be found in chicken, tuna, salmon, criminy mushroom, peanuts, barley, bulgur, whole wheat, sunflower seeds, green vegetable, liver and more. Niacin may also be taken as a vitamin supplement. Excessive intake of niacin can result in ulcer and liver problems so it should be taken carefully and only in moderate quantities.[3]

        4. Almonds

        almonds-raw_625x350_51421213477

          Almonds act as a pain reliever as they contain salicin. Salicin is a pain blocker that is found in over the counter pain killers. Almonds are effective as a treatment for the pain experienced when you suffer from a headache and may also be used as a preventive treatment. You can try eating a handful or two of almonds when you feel a headache starting to set in.[4]

           5.  Ginger Root

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          gingerr

            Prostaglandin synthesis is a process that takes place in humans. It involves the creation of lipid (Fat) compounds within cells. These fatty substances are like chemical messengers. They trigger biological process such as inflammation and alerting neurons to pain. Some drugs such as aspirin inhibit prostaglandin synthesis. Gingerroot is a natural substance that also inhibits the synthesis. In other words gingerroot can work to prevent the process that alerts your neurons that pain is present.[5] Thus it stops our body from recognizing and responding when headaches occur. It can also help elevate feelings of nausea.

            You can simply chew on a piece of ginger root or drink some ginger root tea.

            6. Peppermint

            Health-benefits-of-Peppermint-Tea

              Peppermint has calming and soothing properties that can aid in the treatment of a headache. Peppermint can be taken as a tea or you can use peppermint oil. Peppermint oil can be massaged gently into your temples, jaw and the back of your neck. In addition, you may like to inhale peppermint steam. This can be very beneficial and can also help with symptoms that often accompany headaches such as nausea and vomiting.

              7. Add Pressure

              pressurepoint

                When you feel the first inklings of a headache place a bit of pressure on your craniosacral system. You can do this by pressing with your fingers on certain migraine-specific spots. This can help your brain to rest and relax. By increasing pressure in the cranium tension that builds up in your brain is sent elsewhere.[6]

                8. Slip into Darkness

                Take-rest-in-a-quiet-dark-room

                  Light can prove to be very painful when you are suffering from a headache. Migraines (and headaches) are most often caused by sensory stimuli. Light is one such stimuli. Shutting out light can bring instant and dramatic relief. If you turn down the blinds or shut off a few lights in your room, you can help to reduce the pain of your headache. You may also like to wear a pair of sunglasses. These can be worn indoors and outdoors and they protect from both natural and unnatural light.[7]

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                  9. Acupuncture

                  Acupuncture therapy - alternative medicine. Portrait of a beautiful woman in acupuncture therapy

                    In acupuncture thin needles are inserted under the skin. According to Chinese medicine this is meant to realign the flow of energy (or qi) in the body.  An analysis, known as a Cochrane review found that acupuncture is just as effective in preventing acute migraines as drug treatments.[8] This review also says that the evidence suggests that acupuncture can help people with frequent episodic or chronic tension-type headaches.[9]

                    10. Meditation

                    meditation

                      There data on the effect of meditation on headaches and migraines remains limited; however, a small study of people with migraines found that spiritual meditation reduced headache frequency and improved pain tolerance.[10]

                      It was reported: “Compared to the other three groups, [Internally Focused Secular Meditation, Externally Focused Secular Meditation, or Muscle Relaxation] those who practiced spiritual meditation had greater decreases in the frequency of migraine headaches, anxiety, and negative affect, as well as greater increases in pain tolerance, headache-related self-efficacy, daily spiritual experiences, and existential well being”.[11]

                      Thus, you may want to invest energy in learning spiritual meditation as it may prove to be an effective way to prevent and treat the pain associated with headaches and migraines.

                      11. Massage

                      Woman having head massage

                        A study found that when they received six weekly massage sessions, people who suffered from migraines had less frequent migraines and better sleep, during the massage weeks and the following three weeks than the control group.[12] You may like to try rubbing your temples or getting a neck, back, head or shoulder massage to treat your headache or migraine.

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                        12. Stretching

                        head stretch

                          Specific headache-relieving stretches can help to relieve muscle tension that can be a big contributor to the pain. Here are some quick stretches you can try next time you feel a headache looming:
                          1. Neck range of motion (chin forward, upward, and toward each shoulder)

                          2. Shoulder shrugs (shrug up, up and forward, and up and back)

                          3. Neck isometrics (press palm into forehead and hold; press hand on each side of the head)

                          For the best results you should stretch twice a day for 20 minutes each time.[13]

                          Try some or all of these headache remedies and you will be sure to get rid of a headache in no time.

                          Featured photo credit: Tiko Aramyan via shutterstock.com

                          Reference

                          [1] http://www.ucheepines.org/hot-foot-bath/
                          [2] http://www.livestrong.com/article/381378-niacin-and-migraines/
                          [3] http://home-cure.net/home-cure-migraine-headaches-natural-remedies/
                          [4] http://everydayroots.com/headache-remedies
                          [5] http://everydayroots.com/headache-remedies
                          [6] http://home-remedies.wonderhowto.com/how-to/10-ways-get-rid-migraine-fast-without-any-medicine-0163408/
                          [7] http://home-remedies.wonderhowto.com/how-to/10-ways-get-rid-migraine-fast-without-any-medicine-0163408/
                          [8] http://www.cochrane.org/CD001218/SYMPT_acupuncture-preventing-migraine-attacks
                          [9] http://www.cochrane.org/CD007587/SYMPT_acupuncture-tension-type-headache
                          [10] http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20538298,00.html
                          [11] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18551362
                          [12] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16827629
                          [13] http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20538298,00.html

                          More by this author

                          Rebecca Beris

                          Rebecca is a wellness and lifestyle writer at Lifehack.

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                          Last Updated on September 18, 2020

                          7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

                          7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

                          Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

                          Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

                          1. Exercise Daily

                          It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

                          If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

                          Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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                          If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

                          2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

                          Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

                          One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

                          This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

                          3. Acknowledge Your Limits

                          Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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                          Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

                          Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

                          4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

                          Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

                          The basic nutritional advice includes:

                          • Eat unprocessed foods
                          • Eat more veggies
                          • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
                          • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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                          Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

                            5. Watch Out for Travel

                            Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

                            This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

                            If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

                            6. Start Slow

                            Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

                            If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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                            7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

                            Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

                            My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

                            If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

                            I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

                            Final Thoughts

                            Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

                            Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

                            More Tips on Getting in Shape

                            Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

                            Reference

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