Getting an occasional headache may not be an immediate cause for concern. All of us have experienced headaches in our lives and we are all familiar with the pain and discomfort that comes with it.
While a common headache may not always be life-threatening, the intensities of pain do vary depending on the type of headache you have.
Some people may still manage to go about their day with a painkiller while others need complete bed rest and other forms of medication.
No matter which type of headache you have, one thing’s for sure: all of them can definitely hinder us from executing our everyday tasks well.
The good news is that today, it’s so easy to acquire some form of relief for a simple headache. From over-the-counter pills to other methods such as getting a massage or going to a spa, prolonged suffering from a headache should have already become a thing of the past.
But unfortunately, there are still many among us who suffer from intense headaches quite often.
It’s not healthy to keep taking pills and it’s not practical to frequent the spas either. In this case, it is important that you consult your doctor for any underlying diseases.
There are about 200 different types of headaches and some of them are symptoms of terminal diseases. But in more common cases, it is simply the result of extreme stress and anxiety.
If you’ve been experiencing headaches more often than normal, it’s time to check in with your lifestyle and your current health. Chances are, you’ve been overstressed, overworked, and your body is telling you to take a break.
No pill or massage can help you prevent future headaches – what you need is a healthy and natural alternative that doesn’t only cure you of a headache but could also potentially protect you from getting a headache.
Why Choose Essential Oils for Curing Headaches
As the title of this blog post suggests, the answer to your headache problem is essential oils. Previously named aromatic oils, essential oils aren’t just for perfume or fragrance purposes.
They are also a great source of medicinal cure for body pains – like a headache, for example.
Now you might be thinking, what’s so special about essential oils when you can have an OTC pill to fix a headache?
While this is not to say that everyone should replace modern medicine with essential oils, there are definitely benefits to giving them a try instead of always relying on an OTC pill.
Below are some reasons why you should try using essential oils for headaches:
We all know that most over-the-counter medication is made up of chemicals. Although modern medicine is very safe for consumption and more often than not effective, there are still cases wherein they do not provide enough relief. The truth is that oftentimes, natural medicine is more effective than over-the-counter pills.
Modern medicine only provides relief but does not ensure long-term wellness. It is more likely that a headache will resurface again if you do not concentrate on caring for your overall health.
Meanwhile, a natural cure doesn’t just heal your pain, it also provides the necessary nutrients needed to improve your health.
Minimal Side Effects
Painkillers and other over-the-counter pills are not created all the same. Different types of medicine may have various reactions.
To top it all off, many of us may experience a common headache but some of us may have some health conditions to consider. Patients with conditions like high blood pressure, cancer, diabetes, and many others may not be allowed to take just any kind of medication.
This makes it harder to find a definite cure just for a simple headache.
While a massage or a trip to the spa can be done when time allows it, the more practical solution is to look towards natural medicine. When used correctly, it has the least number of side effects compared to modern medicine.
In fact, the most common side effect of an essential oil is related to allergies. If you have an allergic reaction from a certain plant or herb, simply switch to another oil.
Take Advantage of Other Health Benefits
Most pills were created to address only one single target. Medication for a headache is plainly made to relieve a headache.
Meanwhile, most essential oils are multipurpose. Almost all of them have a vast number of medicinal properties and besides, they also smell good! Others can even be delicious when mixed with tea. It’s a far cry from a bitter pill, wouldn’t you agree?
As we’ve mentioned, essential oils are rich in medicinal uses. Which means that even if you are using a certain oil for a headache only, your whole body will also benefit from it at the same time.
With this in mind, investing in essential oils is also worthwhile compared to spending your hard earned cash on pills and drugs.
Types of Headaches and Which Essential Oil to Use
In order to effectively reduce headache pain, it is important to learn its causes and the type of pain you are experiencing as well. Although most essential oils to help in alleviating the effects of a headache, there are some that are more powerful for certain types of headaches than the other.
Below is a list of the most common types of headaches. Figure out which type of pain is the closest to the type of headache you often get.
1. Tension Headaches
If your headaches feel as if you are wearing a tight band around your head, you might be having a tension headache. This type of head pain is the most common out of all types and yet its causes have yet to be discovered.
However, if you often have this kind of headache, it is recommended that you do some lifestyle changes. Healthy living is still the best way to cure these types of issues.
Some doctors may even recommend a non-drug oriented medication since this type of headache is usually easy to recover from. And so, there is no need to opt for a strong type of medicine to cure it.
Best Essential Oil for Tension Headaches: Peppermint Oil
As the name suggests, tension headaches involve feeling muscle tension especially around the face or even on your neck and shoulders.
In order to relieve pain for a tension headache, it is recommended to use peppermint oil. This oil has an enduring cooling effect and it has the ability to release tense muscles. It is also said to promote blood flow when applied topically.
To use peppermint oil on the forehead, mix 1-2 drops with a carrier oil and apply topically. Keep in mind that applying too much of the oil may be uncomfortable to the eyes.
When applying the oil to other areas such as the neck and shoulders, add 2-3 drops of peppermint oil and mix it with a bit of coconut oil.
This will allows the peppermint oil to be absorbed and retained in the skin for longer periods of time. The coconut oil is also very healthy for the skin as well.
2. Sinus Headaches
If you are experiencing a sinus headache, you aren’t just feeling uncomfortable with a throbbing pain on your head. A sinus headache is usually accompanied with a runny nose, swelling in the face and oftentimes, a fever may also arise. You may feel pain on cheekbones and on the bridge of your nose as well.
These types of headaches are usually caused by an allergic reaction. Apart from using an essential oil, it is important to receive medication for your allergies first.
Your doctor might recommend you to take decongestants and antihistamines. If your sinuses are blocked due to an infection, your doctor would also prescribe antibiotics. Please do not ignore these medications as it can help you recover faster.
On the other hand, if you are looking for an alternative to decongestants, essential oils may help.
On average, decongestants can only be used for up to 3 days. But if your sinuses have not improved after, it may become very uncomfortable without relief from a decongestant. In this case, it is a great idea to use an essential oil instead.
Best Essential Oil for Sinus Headaches: Tea Tree Oil
Before using an essential oil, please check if you have allergic reactions to certain flowers and herbs as it may worsen your allergic reaction.
Once you have that settled, let’s look at some of the best ways to use essential oils for a sinus headache. It is said that using a humidifier is highly suggested for curing sinus headaches. So why not add a few drops of a decongestant essential oil to boost its effectivity?
Researchers say that tea tree oil is the most effective for curing sinus headaches. Tea tree oil has antimicrobial properties that are great for eliminating germs which cause flu.
And did you know that this oil was also used as an antiseptic way before penicillin was created?
To use tea tree oil for headaches, you may use it with a diffuser to unclog your sinuses or you may also rub it on your skin.
Please remember to use this oil sparingly and only add up to 3 drops every time you use it. Although tea tree oil is safe to consumed, this oil should not be swallowed without diluting it with water first. Adding tea tree oil to your drink can help a sore throat or if you have excess mucus.
3. Cluster Headaches
Cluster headaches are very similar to sinus headaches. They share similar symptoms and they are oftentimes mistaken for the other.
However, there are still some subtle differences between the two, and knowing a few of them can turn out to be beneficial information for healing.
One important thing you need to know about the differences between sinus and cluster headaches is that a sinus headache is almost always accompanied with a fever. And it continues to persist as long as the infection has not been cured.
But a cluster headache, on the other hand, could last for only up to 45 minutes. Cluster headaches may also return at any time during the day.
Another difference between the two is that a sinus headache is more often than not an allergic reaction or an infection of the sinuses. Meanwhile, a cluster headache is primarily a vascular headache wherein one’s blood vessels become swollen.
And although sinus headaches may seem like the worse of the two, they are actually more common than an extreme case of cluster headaches. But perhaps the most striking differences between the two lies in the causes of each.
As we’ve mentioned, a sinus headache is the effect of an allergic reaction or an inflamed sinus.
Although the specific cause behind a cluster headache has yet to be discovered, many studies have associated cluster headaches with abnormal body clock behaviors. Surprisingly, this type of headache is not triggered by stress, food, or hormonal changes.
Best Essential Oil For Cluster Headaches: Basil Oil And Chamomile Oil
Who says you can only use one essential oil at a time? To power-up the medicinal effect of an oil, try mixing two or more oils together.
For a cluster headache, chamomile oil can soothe and calm your senses. This allows you to feel more comfortable despite all the pain you might be experiencing. 2-3 drops of chamomile oil are said to be an antidepressant so using this oil can definitely lighten up your mood even with a headache.
Mix 2-3 drops of basil oil and you can also benefit from its pain-relieving properties. Basil oil can help eliminate tension and pain.
You may use this essential oil combo in a humidifier to help decongest your sinuses. Or, you may also apply it to your skin, especially on the forehead area. Don’t forget to mix these oils with a carrier formula before doing so.
Almost anybody would think of a migraine when it comes to headaches. Compared to other types of headaches, a migraine tends to be far more intense and long-standing.
Some people may suffer from a migraine for 72 hours. At high intensities, the pain can also cause other alarming symptoms such as vomiting, nausea and a sensitivity to light.
There is a long list of causes for migraines from an unhealthy lifestyle to lack of sleep, even hormonal changes in women may be a cause for a migraine. This ultimately means that one should not only take the appropriate medication to cure a migraine but also to be
Best Essential Oil For A Migraine: Lavender Oil
Studies show that a strong aroma can also cause headaches. Because of this, it is best to stay away from powerful scents when choosing an essential oil for migraines.
Lavender, when used appropriately, has a light and gentle scent. It is also a great option to relieve stress and anxiety. Those suffering from insomnia also use lavender oil to help them go to sleep.
Use 2-3 drops of lavender oil into a diffuser or mix a few drops of the oil into your favorite lotion if applying topically. Its calming medicinal properties will help alleviate pain from a migraine.
Although most headaches may be cured with simple over-the-counter medication and essential oils, it is best to pay your doctor a visit when you are experiencing recurring and intense headaches.
To cure a common headache, on the other hand, it may be a good idea to give natural options a try. Essential oils aren’t just proven to be effective, they are also safer than most modern type medicine as well.
Allen Wei is someone who believes in living his best life, focusing on balance, happiness, and relaxation. He fosters a positive lifestyle in terms of his body, mind, and environment, and he is a huge proponent of learning to be balanced via relaxation techniques integrated into our busy lives.