In today’s world of traditional medicine, finding natural alternatives for treating issues like headaches has become less common. Unfortunately, the winners in this situation are the pharmaceutical companies who make more money when you take their drugs for every headache flare up. The benefits of taking over-the-counter (OTC) options like aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen are not to be overlooked as they usually are able to stop a headache quickly. However, medications do not prevent the next headache, and can even become the cause of some headaches.
If you have heard of rebound headaches (also called medication overuse headaches), you may know that they are a side effect of many OTC headache medications. Perhaps this is why so many people are looking for natural remedies for migraines and headaches. Below is a list of eight all-natural remedies for headaches.
Laughter truly is a form of medicine, and it can even be a great way to reduce your headaches. The reason this works is because when a person is laughing, the brain gets more oxygen. Since reduced oxygen in the brain can be what is behind some headaches, it makes a dose of laughter a viable option.
Quite simply, we need water to live. Unfortunately, most people do not drink nearly enough compared to what they require. A good way to check your intake is by tracking how much water you drink in a week to see how frequently you drink 8-12 glasses of water in a day. What is interesting is that headaches are actually one of the ways that your body will tell you that it needs more water.
Movement and activity will help get your blood flowing so your brain has enough oxygen to function properly, which is why daily exercise can be so helpful. Even a moderate amount like 20-30 minutes of cardio can improve circulation. It is always a good idea to check with a physician before starting a new exercise routine. For example, it would not be wise to go from no exercise for several months to trying to jog several miles. Begin your exercise progress slowly and gradually.
Did you notice the theme of basic life needs in this list? The reason for this is that our modern lifestyle tends to ignore these needs that make a dramatic difference in how we heal, function, and perform on a daily basis. The standard amount of sleep necessary for adults is eight hours of sleep per night. The best way to get quality rest is by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day (including the weekends). Setting up your sleep environment is important. Keeping the bedroom dark and avoiding mobile devices in bed can help you sleep better. Using white noise or getting the room as quiet as possible are all great ways to get a better night’s sleep.
Spine health is extremely important for keeping migraines away. Here are a few tips to help you maintain proper posture throughout your day:
- Adjust all monitors so they are at eye level to keep you from having to constantly be looking down.
- Check mobile devices less frequently since repeatedly craning the neck to look down at a phone can lead to “text neck” – in other words, neck pain that causes headaches.
- Sit upright while driving.
Aromatherapy can be surprisingly helpful in alleviating stress, a leading cause of many headaches. This is the reason that the most common type of headache is a tension headache. The leading stress-reducing scents are peppermint and lavender. By adding essential oils to a diffuser, you can release calming scents in the air throughout your day. Be aware of any scents you are allergic to since a reaction can lead to a headache as well as other symptoms.
In some cases, you may have a headache caused by a nutritional deficiency, so taking supplements to help replace these deficiencies can bring relief. One of these vitamin deficiencies that can cause this type of symptom is a lack of B vitamins because they are essential in forming neurotransmitters including serotonin. One common deficiency is magnesium, which could also be responsible for a number of the visual and sensory changes that occur during migraine headaches. An added bonus is that magnesium is good for the digestive tract, in case you deal with both headaches and constipation. Just be aware that you could also take too much magnesium, resulting in diarrhea. Talk with a health care professional before starting new supplements.
#8 Upper Cervical Chiropractic
In many headache and migraine cases, the onset occurs following a head or neck trauma. The reason is that this type of injury can cause a misalignment of the atlas and axis, the top two bones in the neck. Misalignments in this particular location can cause a reduction in blood flow to the brain, inhibit brainstem function, and affect cerebrospinal fluid drainage. These are all underlying factors in headache and migraine occurrence.
It makes sense that so many patients in case studies experience incredible results once the C1 and C2 are properly realigned. Upper cervical chiropractic administers precise and gentle adjustments that last longer than other kinds of adjustments, giving the body the time it needs to heal. Once proper blood flow and central nervous system function are restored, a patient may experience a complete alleviation of migraines and headaches.
If you would like to learn more about upper cervical chiropractic and how it can help you, please contact us at Evoke Spinal Care. A complimentary consultation can help identify whether our specialization of chiropractic care is a good, natural option for you. You could even experience benefits after your first adjustment.