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10 Effective Home Remedies to Fix Headache Fast

Whether it is because of ‘Monday blues’ or due to our hectic lifestyle schedules, pounding skull is always difficult to manage. While many people rely on medicated formulas to treat headaches, depending on some home remedies is always proven to be effective.

We bring to you a few home remedies that will ensure speedy recovery and help in the prevention of headache.

Hydrate yourself

One of the common reasons of headache and even migraine is lack of water in our body. Properly hydrating yourself plays a significant role in our well-being. Hence, keep yourself well hydrated. You should have ample amount of fluids which may include fresh juices, water, coconut water. Avoid over consumption of caffeinated beverages like tea and coffee as these drinks contribute to dehydration.

Follow a balanced diet

Our body requires all type of vitamins and minerals. And deficiency of any essential nutrient could take a toll on our health. Hence, it is important to have a balanced diet. One should also have food at the right time as delay in any meal could make your health suffer.

Proper functioning of our brain requires glucose and absence of glucose could cause hypoglycaemia, which in turn, results in headache. So, follow a proper and healthy diet and also increase your body’s metabolism.

Sleep properly

Another effective way to treat and even to prevent headache is to sleep for 7 to 8 hours every night. Lack of sleep could disrupt your healthy lifestyle and can be responsible for various diseases. You may feel stressed out due to interrupted sleep which may become the reason for your throbbing skull.

Take a nap

When you feel stressed or out of energy, relax and close your eyes. This will help in releasing tension and pressure from your body and can help in preventing headache. You should also avoid to exert yourself physically.

Head massages

Head massages are indeed helpful but massage should be done with gentle hands. Apply gentle pressure to the painful area with your index finger or thumb. Massaging your head helps in relieving the tightened muscles and improves blood circulation.

Take a hot shower bath

This is another effective way to treat headache. Wash your head with luke-warm water and let it run down on your neck and back. It will alleviate the muscle tension and improve blood circulation.


Headache is generally a result of stress and tension. And if it is a minor headache, simply smiling and laughing can cure it. The ‘feel-good’ hormones will release the chemicals in your brain that will help in curing headache.

Just relax

Your body requires rest in case of any illness. Even a milder headache needs relaxation of muscles and easing tension. Just close your eyes and relax for some time.

Breathe in and breathe out

This technique is great to relieve stress and tension. And if done in fresh air, it is one of the best practices to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Avoid any stressful situation

If you experience any stressful situation, try to divert your attention. Distract your mind and concentrate on something that soothes your mind and body. Opt for various stress busters as they help in treating headache!

5 natural home remedies of migraines

Migraines can make going about your day really difficult. And so if you have been looking for home remedies for migraine, then these science-backed tricks can offer quick relief.

It is not possible to focus on your day-to-day activities when headaches become a constant affair.  Migraine is the third most prevalent illness, affecting 12% of the worlds’ population according to the Migraine Research Foundation.

The symptoms may even include nausea and sensitivity to bright lights and high-pitched sounds. One of the most effective ways of tackling migraines is by avoiding triggers like lack of sleep, bright lights, loud sounds, and stress.

Foods that may trigger migraine include chocolate, caffeine, red wine, MSG, and nitrates found in processed meats such as hot dogs and salami.

But if despite your best efforts, you find yourself in the clutches of a horrible migraine headache, then try these natural remedies to ease the debilitating symptoms and pain:

1. Lavender essential oils
Lavender helps to ease the pain. According to a study, migraine patients reported a significant reduction in symptoms after inhaling lavender for 15 minutes.

It also helps you sleep better, making it a boon for migraine sufferers since a regular sleep schedule helps in preventing migraines.

It also releases stress, one of the most common triggers of migraine, helping muscles relax and relieving pain.

Trust lavender oil’s magic to treat your migraine. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

2. Butterbur
This herb has been proven to be effective remedy for migraine pain relief. Studies found that taking butterbur extract reduced the number and intensity of headaches in subjects.

Petasin and isopetasin are two substances found in butterbur that help in reducing inflammation that further prevents migraine as well as reduces headaches. However, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid use of butterbur.

3. Hydration
It may sound too simple but it is one of the most effective natural remedies for headaches. Often overlooked, dehydration is a common trigger for migraine. It leads to the loss of fluid from your brain that stimulates the pain receptors and can make an existing headache become worse—thus impairing the ability to focus and concentrate.

Drink plenty of fluids and keep those beverages with alcohol and caffeine to a minimum as these can dehydrate you further with their diuretic effect. If water consumption is a difficult goal to achieve then you can also eat your water through foods that have high water content such as fruits and vegetables. Don’t forget, dehydration is an avoidable migraine trigger.

4. Ginger
For centuries, ginger has been used as a natural remedy for pain, nausea, diarrhea, digestive issues, aches and pains. Ginger contains over 200 natural components in its oil, which is considered to contain anti-inflammatory, anti-nausea and antihistamine actions and hence supports in migraine management.

A cup of steaming hot ginger tea will take your migraine away! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Ginger helps in eliminating nausea and vomiting, two common migraine symptoms. To benefit from this simple home remedy, you can rub fresh ginger root paste between eyebrows or on your forehead. You can also get pain relief by sipping on hot ginger tea.

5. Yoga
Yoga helps the body release endorphins i.e happy hormones that fight pain. It is a perfect exercise for the body, mind, and spirit. It helps in calming the nerves and relaxing the muscles by boosting blood circulation in the body and helping with better oxygenation that supports healthy energy and organ systems. Yoga also provides pain relief through decrease in muscle tension.

5 Steps for Instant Relief from Migraines & Headaches

Headaches and migraines can affect all of the population. Based on overseas research, it is estimated by the Headaches Australia Organisation that there are up to seven million tension-type headache sufferers (36% for men and 42% for women) and up to three million migraine sufferers in Australia. Headaches and migraines can affect your home life, social life and work life.

With the latest research indicating that a number of headaches are being caused by the very medications taken to alleviate them, I’ll offer you some very effective alternatives to headache and migraine relief.

In this article I’ll discuss:

  • Tension headaches and symptoms
  • Migraine headaches and symptoms
  • Is your headache or migraine caused by your neck?
  • Preventing & treating headaches and migraine headaches
  • How physiotherapy can relieve headaches and migraine headaches


Tension Headaches

Headaches alone affect almost two thirds of the population. Headaches appear as pain in the head, in or around the eyes or ears and behind the back of the head. There are many different types of headaches, and many different causes. There is significant clinical evidence and research to confirm that many headaches arise from tight muscles and stiff joints of the upper neck. These headaches are known as tension headaches or cervicogenic headaches.

Current RCTs suggest that massage therapy, physiotherapy, relaxation and chiropractic spinal manipulative therapy might be equally efficient as propranolol and topiramate in the prophylactic management of migraine.

A tension headache is thought to be due to muscle tightness in the scalp, forehead and the back of the neck as well as stiff joints of the upper neck, resulting in referred pain into the head.

This can be triggered by:

  • physical or emotional stress
  • muscle tension of the upper neck
  • malalignments of the neck joints
  • fatigue and cold
  • poor sitting posture with a poked chin neck position
  • previous spinal injury such as a whiplash injury in a motor vehicle accident


Tension Headache Symptoms

Tension headache symptoms may include:

  • Dull and persistent pain that may vary in intensity (mild to moderate) and is usually felt on both sides of the head or neck (some however experience jabs of sudden pain in the head)
  • A constant, tight, heavy or pressing sensation on or around the head
  • Tautness and tenderness of the scalp, neck and shoulder muscles
  • Neck movements (active or passive) restricted by muscular stiffness and discomfort
  • Ache in the upper back
  • Recurrent and episodic pain (often in association with stress)
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Disturbed sleep patterns

Migraine Headaches

Migraine can be triggered by many factors including alcohol, caffeine, preservatives in food, hormonal changes, stress, sleep disturbances, perfumes and smoking. Tight muscles and stiff joints of the upper neck can also trigger migraine headaches.

Migraine headaches are described as a recurrent throbbing headache that typically affects one side of the head and is often accompanied by nausea and disturbed vision. Migraine sufferrers can also be extremely sensitive to light and sound.


Symptoms of Migraine Headaches

Along with a headache, migraine sufferers may also experience:

  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • sensitivity to bright lights
  • sensitivity to loud music and blurred vision.
  • an aura or visual disturbances such flashes, splotches, zigzags, or shimmering coloured lights surrounding a blind spot.

Is Your Headache or Migraine Caused by Your Neck?

Your headache or migraine could be caused by tight neck muscles or neck stiffness. This may be caused by a poor standing and sitting posture as well as sleeping positions.

Here’s a quick quiz to work out if your headache is coming from your neck?

  1. Has your doctor cleared you of any other factors that may be contributing to your headache?
  2. Does your neck pain radiate from the back to the front of your head?
  3. Do you have pain between your shoulder blades?
  4. Is your headache worsened by neck movement?
  5. Is your headache worsened by keeping your neck in the one position for long periods (driving, watching TV or computer use)?
  6. Is your headache worsened with poor sitting posture with your chin poked forward?
  7. Can your headache be eased by pressure at the base of your skull?
  8. Is this type of headache not always relieved by medication?
  9. Do you have a long history of neck pain and headache?

If you answered yes to some of these questions, then you may need to see a physiotherapist to give you a more accurate diagnosis.

Simple Steps to Stop the Pain

Physiotherapy can be a very effective treatment for headache and migraine sufferers Click To Tweet

Physiotherapy: Physiotherapy can be a very effective treatment for headache and migraine sufferers by proving quick relief. You can also get an accurate diagnosis about the cause of your headache or migraine with a treatment plan to prevent future migraines and headaches. You’ll find more information at the end of the article on how physiotherapy can help your migraine or headache.

Ice Packs: Most people think they need a hot pack for a headache or migraine, but opt for a cold pack rather than a hot pack to stop migraine pain. A cold pack or ice wrapped in a towel/pillow slip will help reduce the inflammation that is causing your headache. Alternating between hot and cold may also be helpful.

Supplements: In a recent study, patients who took 400 mg of riboflavin (vitamin B2) daily experienced significantly fewer migraines after 3 months.

Relaxation Techniques: Massage can help ease any neck and shoulder spasms that may be directly or indirectly causing your headache. A short and gentle Hatha yoga session can also help you mobilise joints and reduce stiffness.

Herbs: Though herbs are more preventative than curative, there are new recommendations that confirm the herb butterbur can help migraine sufferers, possibly because it supports a healthy blood flow to the brain.

An extract of butterbur root (petasin) is thought to possess anti-inflammatory and vasoactive properties, which has led researchers to investigate its efficacy for migraine prophylaxis.

How physiotherapy and massage will help your headache or migraine


In most cases, physiotherapy alone offers an effective solution for tension headaches.

  1. Correct diagnosis – On your first visit, we can establish a correct diagnosis to direct the most effective care to your headache pain. Establishing the correct diagnosis early is imperative as several injuries have similar symptoms yet have different treatment protocols. Early treatment will be focused on reducing pain and regaining normal neck range of motion.
  2. Improving neck joint mobility – Using hands on therapy techniques to improve upper neck joint mobility and muscle flexibility will .
  3. Improving your posture – Your headaches and migraines can be improved by improving your posture. Poor posture can lead to strain on your back and neck muscles possibly leading to headaches and migraine.
  4. Pillow assessment – A cervical pillow assessment can help ensure that you have the proper pillow to obtain an optimal neck position during sleeping.
  5. Workstation /work desk set up – Sitting incorrectly at our desks, having the computer screen at an incorrect height and sitting for long periods is detrimental to our overall health and could be one of the leading causes of headaches and migraines
  6. Strengthening program – The physiotherapist will then prescribe an exercise program to improve the strength and coordination of your deep neck stabilisers and upper back muscles, which are important for preventing re-injury.


Having a headache or migraine can stop you in your tracks and seriously affect your work life, social life and family life. If you take note of some of these quick and easy, natural solutions you can be back to your normal self in no time.


Main Photo Credit: r.nial bradshaw


9 Natural Remedies for Headaches for Quick Relief

Did you know that headaches are the most common form of pain?[1] Relatively minor and temporary conditions such as dehydration, stress, the flu, a cold, an ear or tooth infection, or staring at a computer screen for too long cause most headaches. Others may be caused by underlying medical issues, like a blow to the head or something more serious.

Fortunately, you can ease most headache pain naturally. While over-the-counter medications may alleviate the pain of both chronic and occasional headaches, natural remedies provide relief without the side effects of pharmaceuticals.

The Different Types of Headaches

No two headaches are alike. Head pain can come on suddenly or develop gradually, go away within an hour or last for several days, or feel sharp, dull, or throbbing. If you have a migraine, you may see flashes of light, become hypersensitive to noise, or feel nauseous.

Doctors have described two main types of headaches: primary and secondary. Primary headaches result from physical issues. Some examples include altered blood flow to the brain, neck, and head, hormone or nerve activity in the brain, tension in the head and neck muscles, or some combination of these factors.

Primary headaches include:

  • Migraines (with or without aura)
  • Cluster headaches
  • Tension headaches

Secondary headaches, on the other hand, are caused by a disease or condition that pushes, pulls, or presses on pain-sensitive nerve endings in the brain. These conditions may cause secondary headaches:

Knowing the causes of your head pain will help you decide which remedy will work best.

Natural Remedies for Headaches

Over-the-counter pain medications such as aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen tend to be the standard recommendation for alleviating a pounding headache. But, many natural remedies can eliminate headaches, or at least reduce their intensity and their frequency of occurrence. Consider the following strategies and see what works best for you.

1. Drink More Water

If you suspect that dehydration may be causing your headache, drink up! Consuming two to three cups of water may help, but it may take 30 minutes to three hours to work. Research hasn’t found that drinking more water can prevent headaches, however. Generally, it’s important for your overall health to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water throughout the day.[2]

2. Use Essential Oils

Essential oils provide many therapeutic benefits, and both lavender and peppermint essential oils can help relieve headaches. Studies have found peppermint oil to be as effective as acetaminophen (paracetamol) and aspirin for tension headaches.[3] Apply a couple of drops of undiluted peppermint oil to your temples, making sure to avoid your eye area. If your skin is sensitive, you can dilute it in a carrier like almond or coconut oil. Using lavender essential oil for aromatherapy also helps relieve stress and headaches; simply rub some between your hands and inhale. Some evidence suggests that lavender is an effective and safe way to reduce the severity of migraine headaches.[4]

3. Sleep More

If you have a headache, take a nap. But if you get headaches regularly, you might want to consider how much sleep you get each night. Migraine, tension, and cluster headaches are associated with sleep deprivation and other sleep disorders like insomnia. If you struggle with insomnia, natural solutions to better sleep, can help, such as keeping electronics out of your bedroom and setting your bedroom thermostat between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. Conversely, while you need to get seven to nine hours of sleep every night, sleeping too much can actually increase the occurrence of headaches.[5]

4. Apply Heat or Cold

Placing a cold compress on your neck may reduce the pain of a migraine, while heat may be better for tension headaches. However, either may reduce pain and help relieve your headaches. Try both and see which works best for you.

5. Turn Off the Lights

Photophobia, or sensitivity to light, co-occurs with migraines so frequently that doctors consider it diagnostic of them.[6] Blue light, which emanates from cell phones and computer screens, can cause stress headaches as well, so turn off your devices and step away for a while. One solution for photophobia-induced headaches is to go into a dark or dimly lit room for 20 to 30 minutes.[7] While sitting quietly in the dark, it’s a great time to quiet your mind and meditate.

6. Meditate & Practice Yoga

Meditation offers a simple way to relax, still your mind, and breathe deeply — all of which reduce headache pain. Whether you are a beginner or you meditate regularly, this quiet practice can calm your nerves, steady the blood flow to the brain, and eliminate tension. Mindfulness meditation reduces the intensity of primary headaches,[8] and yoga can reduce the frequency that people get migraine headaches.[9] Consider learning about the best meditation practices and try different yoga classes to see what style you prefer.

7. Try Acupuncture

Studies found that getting at least six acupuncture treatments reduces the frequency of migraine headaches as effectively as pain medication. A review of multiple studies found that 41 percent of people getting acupuncture had half as many migraine headaches in the months following treatment.[10] Acupuncture also proved more effective than sham acupuncture, a “control” technique used to test for the placebo effect.

8. Use Pressure Points

In acupressure, practitioners push on specific body pressure points for different conditions. You can even perform acupressure on headache pressure points on your own. Try using your right thumb and index finger to press hard on the loose skin between these same fingers on your left hand for ten seconds. This pressure point is called LI-4 or Hegu.

9. Get a Massage

Since many headaches come from tension in the upper back, neck, jaw, and shoulders, a massage can do wonders. Massage has many therapeutic benefits with few risks. It improves blood circulation while reducing blood pressure, soothing pain, reducing stress and anxiety, and just making you feel good. Add in some lavender or rosemary oil for the bonus of aromatherapy with your massage.

Foods That Help With Headaches

Although some foods are known to cause headaches, others may help prevent or ease a headache. Try the following foods, which are rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and other nutrients, next time your head hurts.

Kale & Leafy Greens

Leafy greens such as kale, spinach, chard, and collard greens are foods high in folate. A low intake of this B vitamin may increase the risk of headaches. Kale is a superfood, one of the most nutrient-rich foods around. Kale has healthy omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and magnesium, all of which help you sleep soundly.


People who suffer from migraines may have lower levels of magnesium in their blood serum compared to people who don’t get them.[11] Magnesium affects the release of neurotransmitters in the body, and the constriction of blood vessels (vasoconstriction), which can affect headaches.[12] Almonds have naturally high levels of magnesium — one ounce of almonds provides 80 milligrams.[12]

Coffee & Tea

Did you realize that you can find headache relief from a cup of Joe? Caffeine is commonly used in over-the-counter pain relievers, but you can get this same effect from coffee. Between 100 and 130 milligrams of caffeine — the amount in an 8-ounce cup of coffee — may help ease both migraine and tension headaches.[13]

You can get the same amount of caffeine from black or green tea. Drinking a hot mug of relaxing tea, like chamomile or ginger, may also help calm your nerves and reduce head pain.

Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Organic raw apple cider vinegar (ACV) is an amazing creation. Not only does it contain a probiotic “mother” that revs up your immune system, but ACV also gives your digestive system a boost which can help with headaches. ACV also encourages normal blood sugar, which is beneficial because blood sugar spikes may cause head pain.

Supplements for Headaches

It’s a good idea to get your nutrients from food. But sometimes, you may lack certain vitamins and minerals because of your diet, and in those cases, you can take nutritional supplements to fill the gaps. These supplements may help with your headaches.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce the frequency and severity of headaches, as well as promote an overall balanced mood.[14] While fatty fish like salmon, herring, sardines, and tuna are good sources of omega-3s, I recommend avoiding fish sources. Instead try looking to flax seed, algae oil, and other plant-based sources of omega-3s.

Vitamin B12

Some studies have found elevated levels of homocysteine, an amino acid produced by the body, in people who get migraines.[15] Some studies have found that supplementing with vitamin B12 may normalize homocysteine levels in the body, and as a result, may help with headaches, though the studies are inconclusive.[16]Foods high in vitamin B12 include primarily animal sources, so if you eat a plant-based diet, you may need to take a B-12 supplement.


Insufficient magnesium causes blood vessels to constrict, and when that happens in the brain, it can lead to head pain. Studies have found that taking a magnesium supplement can influence blood flow, easing headache tension.[17] Many people do not get enough magnesium in their diet and adding a supplement to your daily regimen may help.


Also called vitamin B-2, riboflavin in high doses may reduce headache frequency. Scientists had people take 400 milligrams every day for six months and observed that cut the number of headaches people experienced in half, from four to two per month average.[18] Taking this vitamin also reduced the amount of migraine medication the patients needed to take.

Coenzyme Q-10

Our bodies naturally produce an antioxidant known as CoQ10 or coenzyme Q, but taking more can serve as a natural remedy for a headache.[19] In the body, CoQ10 provides energy to cells, but some people with various health ailments may be deficient in this substance.[20] It may help with headaches by normalizing blood pressure.


This herbal supplement may help prevent migraines, but the evidence is inconclusive. The most recent rigorous trial found that taking feverfew caused, on average, 0.6 fewer migraines a month. The study found no major safety concerns with taking feverfew supplements.[21]


Butterbur, a flower in the sunflower family, may help prevent headaches according to the American Academy of Neurology and the American Headache Society.[22] However, unprocessed butterbur plant contains toxic chemicals called pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs), so only use supplements labeled and certified as PA-free.

What Causes Headaches?

Now that you know natural ways to eliminate headaches, you may also want to know what causes them so you can avoid potential triggers. Common causes of headaches include:

  • Skipped meals
  • Stress
  • Inadequate or uncomfortable sleep
  • Neck muscle pain
  • Bright lights
  • Cigarette smoke or alcohol
  • Strong odors, like perfume
  • Certain foods
  • A medical condition

Foods That Cause Headaches

Some people experience headaches after eating certain foods. Common food triggers include:

If you suspect something that you eat may be causing your headaches, keep a food journal to help identify food triggers so you can eliminate them from your diet.

An irregular eating schedule can also lead to headaches, whether you miss a meal because you are too busy to eat or because you are fasting. When you are fasting or cleansing, headaches typically go away once caffeine and other toxins are fully eliminated from your bloodstream and your body adjusts.

Genes & Headaches

It’s not uncommon for migraines to run in families and research suggests that migraines, in particular, have a genetic basis. A 2013 study published in the journal Nature Genetics looked at more than 100,000 people and identified 12 genetic regions, including five new ones, associated with people’s susceptibility to migraines.[23]

Stress & Headaches

Headaches are more likely to occur when you feel stressed. Stress can cause both tension headaches and migraines, and it can worsen headaches caused by other issues. Find ways to reduce and handle stress, such as taking breaks throughout the day, exercising, and meditating.

Sleep & Headaches

Too little and too much sleep, as well as sudden changes in your sleeping pattern, may trigger tension headaches and migraines. Less than six hours or more than eight and a half hours of sleep appear to increase the severity of headaches. Those who suffer from headaches are two to eight times more likely than the average person to have a sleep disorder,[5] so talk to your healthcare provider if you are concerned.

Exercise & Headaches

Common activities associated with exercise headaches include weight lifting and cardiovascular exercise such as running, swimming, rowing, and playing tennis. Avoid exercising outdoors in hot, humid weather or at high altitudes, as both can increase the likelihood of an exercise headache.

Sex & Headaches

For some people, having sex can trigger a headache. Sex headaches may be a dull ache or severe pain and typically happen immediately before or during orgasm. They occur more frequently in men than women. On the other hand, studies show that sex can actually relieve headaches in some people, at least temporarily, as blood flows away from the head region during orgasm.[24] Sex headaches should not be a cause for alarm unless they linger long afterward.

Points to Remember

Simple, healthy practices can help alleviate and prevent headaches, whether migraines, tension headaches, or other types of headaches. If you have a headache, natural remedies include drinking water, going into a dark room, and using stress-reduction techniques such as yoga, meditation, and aromatherapy using essential oils. The caffeine from a cup of coffee may also help.

One of the best natural remedies for tension headaches involves relaxing your body and mind, which calms your muscles, reduces your body tension, lowers your blood pressure, and soothes your nerves. Get enough sleep — but not too much — and eat foods that help headaches, like kale and almonds. Some supplements may reduce the frequency of headaches, including magnesium, B12, feverfew, and butterbur.

It can also be beneficial to avoid triggers. Everyone has different triggers, though, so consider keeping a journal to help you identify yours.

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†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.

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