Headaches are the most common neurological disorder and one of the most frequent symptoms in the medical field. Almost 50 percent of the general population have experienced headaches [R].
With the prevalence of headaches, pain medications, such as opioids and NSAIDs, are commonly used. However, if you want to avoid adverse side effects, looking into the following natural treatments will be preferable [R].
Butterbur is a plant of the sunflower family that is known as a migraine and hay fever medication. In fact, one study in 2006 showed that administration of 150 mg butterbur decreased the frequency of migraine attacks after 3 to 4 months of treatment [R].
2. Feverfew and Willow Bark
The parthenolide in feverfew can prevent migraine attacks by inhibiting NF-kB activity and reducing inflammation. On the other hand, willow bark is a great alternative to aspirin because it is a natural analgesic that contains salicin, a chemical also found in aspirin.
A study found that administration of feverfew (300 mg) and willow bark (300 mg) twice daily can reduce migraine attacks by 57.2 percent after 6 weeks of treatment and 61.72 percent after 12 weeks in nine out of ten participants [R].
Cannabis used to be a conventional treatment for migraine between the years 1874 to 1942 [R]. It is a powerful reliever for many different types of pain due its cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) components. It can even prevent the occurence of a migraine if taken during the first signs of a migraine attack [R].
4. Peppermint Oil
The menthol in peppermint oil is responsible for its cooling and numbing effect that provides relief from migraines and tension headaches. Peppermint oil increases blood flow to the forehead and soothes the muscles. When used with ethanol, it was found to reduce headache sensitivity [R].
5. Lavender Oil
Lavender is often used in aromatherapy as a sedative and mood stabilizer. This is backed by a study done in 2012 where 47 participants were asked to record the effects of inhaling lavender oil for 15 minutes. The participants were recorded to have relief from headache attacks 92 times out of 129 [R].
6. Feverfew and Ginger
The medical journal “Headache” did a study that proved the effectiveness of ginger and feverfew in treating migraine. Ginger can help alleviate nausea and vomiting that is often experienced by migraine sufferers. You can either make ginger tea, or peel a piece of ginger and chew on it [R].
We strongly advise you to have a regular check-up with your doctor and lab tests (blood, kidney, and liver) at least every three months if you decide to take any herbal medicine or supplement mentioned in the list for long-term.