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10 All Natural Migraine Remedies

10 All Natural Migraine Remedies

Migraines are different for everyone. Sometimes they come on slowly, and you can take preemptive action to ward off the worst of the pain. Other times, they come out of nowhere, especially if you don’t know what signs to look for.

They can be completely disabling, with some people getting sick to the point of vomiting. Others suffer from severe pain, made worse by lights and sounds. Still others may have the pain while also experiencing a kind of underwater effect, where sounds seem muted and lights dance around the top of their vision.

Whatever kind affects you, it’s always best to talk to your doctor. However, if you’re on the verge of getting one or know they is a possibility, there are things you can do. Read on to learn about 10 options to help make it through another migraine.

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1. Avoid Triggers

Sometimes you can figure out what causes a migraine. You may find you’re sensitive to certain foods, long exposure to intense stimuli like a loud music concert, medications or even hormonal changes. If you are careful and keep track of what you do and eat on a regular basis, you may be able to pinpoint ways to head off a migraine.

2. Massage

If you have a migraine already or can feel it setting in, a massage may be able to help. Prolonged tension, especially when coupled with stress, can be strongly related to the onset of migraines. Self-massage can help relieve that. There are several ways to do so, but you should focus the massage on the neck, temples and forehead. However, you can extend this down your back and to your jaw, should you find tightness there.

3. Herbs

Certain herbs or herbal teas can help with migraine pain. Studies done on butterbur and feverfew showed a decrease in the number of migraines people suffered when taking the herbs.[1] They have been used for centuries, but a concentrated extract, especially of butterbur, may have some safety concerns. Proper processing can take care of that, but it’s important to be careful where you purchase it from.

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4. Essential Oils

Certain oils can speed the recovery and ease the pain from severe headaches and migraines. Peppermint, lavender and basil are all popular options that are said to help relieve the pain of a migraine. These oils help with relaxation and inflammation, so they can be doubly effective. However, if you become sensitive to smells while suffering, then don’t try to force it. It may not work for you.

5. Medical Marijuana

This could be a tricky one, depending on where you live. If you live somewhere that has sanctioned the use of medical marijuana, it could be extremely helpful for migraines. It acts as both a remedy to one that has already started, and as a preventative. However, with so many states ratifying the use of medical marijuana, it’s more likely than not you can make use of it. Florida made headlines when it voted to allow medical marijuana late last year. It can’t hurt to investigate and talk to a doctor.

6. Magnesium

One of the things you learn when engaging in something strenuous, like running a marathon or growing a baby, is that you need the right amounts of vitamins to be comfortable. Two of the more important ones for muscle health are magnesium and potassium. Low magnesium levels have been found to be associated with a migraine attack, so it’s been theorized that a supplement could help ward them off or shorten their duration. This only works in some people, however, so try it with an open mind.

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7. Stretching and Posture

Sometimes the biggest issue is how you’re sitting. Certain positions can put a lot of pressure in the wrong areas. If you get migraines after sitting at a desk or doing some kind of repetitive task, it could be related to posture. Tingling or numbness in the hands, jaw clenching and tingles in the temples can all be symptoms of poor posture. If it’s bad enough, this can easily contribute to migraines. Working on posture with stretching exercises can be helpful.

8. Relaxation Techniques

Massage is a great tool, but if you can’t get one there are plenty of other things you can do to help with a migraine. Sometimes during a migraine, all you can manage is to lie down in a cool, dark place with no noise. That’s fine, if that’s what you need. However, a bath could also help. Typically heat isn’t the best option, but much of that depends on you. Meditation can also be helpful, especially if stress is one of your triggers. Meditation has been shown to reduce stress, sometimes as effectively as medicine.

9. Proper Hydration

Sometimes the worst migraines you get are simply caused by not taking proper care of your body. Diet can occasionally be the cause, but it’s more likely related to dehydration. If you work outside in warm weather or are very active, it can be easy to fall behind in drinking enough. Keep track of the water you consume, and you can prevent some migraines before they even begin.

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10. Ice

Headaches of all kinds are often caused by inflammation. In such a case, ice is a better option than heat. A cold pack settled over your forehead in a dark, quiet room will often provide a surprising amount of relief. Ice works best if your migraines are due to inflammation. If they aren’t, the ice can still provide relief, even if it doesn’t necessarily shorten the process.

The biggest thing you can do to avoid a migraine in the first place is take proper care of yourself. A good diet, enough sleep, plenty of water and avoiding triggers are all important aspects. Sometimes it won’t work though. When that happens, being prepared can help you manage your migraines.

Reference

[1] University of Maryland Medical Center: Migraine headache

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Last Updated on May 22, 2019

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

1. Cat Camel Stretch

Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

Here’s a video to guide you through:

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2. Go for a Walk or a Run

This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

3. Jumping Jacks

Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

4. Abductor Side Lifts

Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

5. Balancing Table Pose

This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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    6. Leg Squats

    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

    7. Push Ups

    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

    8. Bicycle Crunches

    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

    9. Lunges

    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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    10. Bicep Curls

    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

    Reference

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