Migraine headaches can be incredibly debilitating and cause immense suffering. Those afflicted with these constant, intense headaches often find themselves unable to function or enjoy life as they normally would.
Fortunately, there are effective natural remedies available that can help lessen the intensity of migraines and provide much needed relief for those who suffer from them.
Let’s explore some of the most well-known natural remedies for migraine headaches so that you can make an informed decision about which one might work best for you.
Identifying Triggers and Avoiding Them
Triggers can vary from person to person, but some of the most common ones are stress, lack of sleep, certain foods and drinks, bright lights, strong smells, hormone fluctuations during menstruation or menopause, and changes in weather conditions.
By keeping track of the situations and environments that tend to bring on a migraine, you can be proactive in avoiding them and hopefully reduce the frequency of your migraines.
Natural Remedies for Preventing Migraines
Migraines can be incredibly debilitating and painful, making it difficult to perform daily activities.
There are a variety of natural remedies that can help reduce or prevent the onset of migraines.
Eating Healthy Foods
Eating a balanced diet that is high in nutrient-dense foods such as fruits and vegetables can help reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines.
Avoiding processed foods or triggers such as caffeine, alcohol, and aged cheese can also be beneficial in managing migraine symptoms.
Stress is one of the most common triggers for migraines so managing stress levels can be a helpful tool in preventing them.
Try relaxation techniques such as yoga, deep breathing, or meditation to help reduce stress levels.
Getting 7-8 hours of quality sleep every night can help prevent the onset of migraines.
Try going to bed and waking up at the same time each day for a regular sleep schedule.
Several herbal supplements can be taken to help reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines.
Some of these include feverfew, butterbur, ginger, and magnesium. Consult your doctor before taking any supplement in order to ensure proper dosing for your individual needs.
Exercising to Help Relieve and Prevent Headaches
Physical activity releases endorphins that help to reduce stress, improve sleep quality, and increase relaxation.
Exercise also increases blood flow to your brain, which can help lessen headache symptoms and reduce the need for medication.
Regular exercise is important for overall health as well as for managing migraine headaches. It helps boost energy, reduce fatigue, and improve your overall well-being.
Even moderate exercise such as walking or swimming can help reduce migraine symptoms.
Combining physical activity with relaxation techniques or stress management strategies can be especially helpful in managing migraines. Try to find activities that you enjoy and are able to sustain over time for the best results.
Consult with your doctor to make sure that you are exercising safely and effectively.
It is important to have good posture when doing physical activities as poor posture can sometimes lead to headaches or worsen existing ones.
Make sure to sit or stand up straight, pull your shoulders back, and keep your head level while working out or doing other physical activities.
Maintaining proper posture can help reduce the risk of migraines and also make exercising easier.
Finally, be sure to stay hydrated when exercising. Dehydration is one of the leading causes of headaches, so it’s important to drink plenty of fluids before, during and after any physical activity.
Diet Changes to Reduce Migraine Frequency and Severity
Making small, steady adjustments to your diet can help you avoid or lessen the intensity of future migraines.
Eating a well-balanced diet with proper proportions of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats can be beneficial in reducing the occurrence and duration of migraine headaches.
Eating regular meals and avoiding skipping meals can help reduce the number of migraine attacks.
Certain foods or food components, such as tyramine (found in aged cheeses), monosodium glutamate (MSG), nitrates/nitrites found in cured meats, processed foods, artificial sweeteners, alcohol, and caffeine have been linked to an increase in the frequency and intensity of migraines.
Limiting or avoiding these foods may help to reduce the occurrence of migraine headaches.
Keeping a food diary can also be helpful in identifying triggers that cause your migraines, so you can avoid them in the future.
Stress Management Techniques
Though there are prescription medications available for relief from migraines, many people prefer to take a more natural approach to managing their symptoms.
There are many proven natural remedies for migraines that are safe and effective.
Here are some of the top techniques for reducing migraine frequency and severity:
This practice involves focusing your attention on the present moment and letting go of any worries or concerns that arise in your mind.
It can help you feel more relaxed and in control.
This calming practice combines physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation to help reduce stress and promote relaxation.
Taking a few deep breaths can help you relax your body and mind when feeling overwhelmed or anxious.
Talking to a therapist or counselor can help you identify and manage stressors in your life.
It can also help you develop better coping skills to handle future stressful situations.
Certain essential oils, such as lavender, have calming properties that may help reduce stress and promote relaxation.
Writing down your thoughts and feelings can help you process your emotions and gain insight into how to better manage stress.
Getting a massage is a great way to relax both physically and mentally, as well as reduce muscle tension that can cause aches and pains.
Connecting with Nature
Taking some time outdoors in nature can help reduce stress and anxiety, as well as improve your mood.
Listening to calming music can help you relax and disconnect from stressors in your life. It can also serve as a great distraction if needed.
Taking regular breaks throughout the day can help you recharge and return to tasks feeling refreshed.
Use these breaks to connect with friends, read a book, or do something else that brings you joy!
Laughter is one of the best ways to reduce stress – it releases endorphins and can help you feel more relaxed. Spend time with friends who make you laugh, watch a comedy show, or read something funny to give your mood a boost.
Connect with Others
Social connection is essential for mental health and spending quality time with loved ones can help reduce feelings of stress and isolation.
Taking time to appreciate the good things in your life can help you stay positive and put stressful events into perspective.
Learning how to say “no” when needed can help you prioritize your mental health and prevent burnout.
When To See a Doctor
If you are experiencing migraines more than two times a month, or if your migraine episodes last longer than 72 hours, it is recommended to seek medical attention.
Your doctor will evaluate your symptoms and may suggest medications, lifestyle changes, and other treatments to help manage the pain and frequency.
If your migraine attacks are accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, confusion, or vision loss, you should seek medical attention immediately.
Whether it’s dietary changes like avoiding trigger foods or incorporating essential oils into your lifestyle, these strategies have been proven to reduce migraine symptoms and frequency.
While migraines may not always disappear completely, these tips will make them much more manageable so you can enjoy life without worrying about when the next one might strike.
If you suffer from migraines, try out some of these natural remedies today and see if they work for you!