The kids. The phone. The boss. Deadlines. Traffic. Bills. Blaring music. Trapped in a whirlpool of stress and cacophony, your head surrenders to the pain of a headache or a migraine.

Aching heads are often trivialized, or the sufferer dismissed as a poor-me drama queen. Headaches are nothing to mock. According to Prevention.com, the top pain medications are ineffective for a whopping one-third of victims. Additionally, if pain medications are taken too frequently they can trigger rebound headaches or migraines.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HEADACHES AND MIGRAINES?

  • The most common headache, a tension headache, is characterized by tightening of the muscles of the neck and scalp. It’s typically felt on both sides of the head and creates mild to moderate pain.
  • Migraines encompass severe and often debilitating pain. They usually arise on only one side of the head. Migraine sufferers experience additional symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and noise.

CAN MIGRAINES AND HEADACHES BE MANAGED WITH NATURAL TREATMENTS?

Absolutely. Many people so desperately seek relief from the pain that they try quelling it with anything from street drugs to alcohol, to online “miracle cures.” There are better, safer, natural alternatives. Here are 5 natural treatments for headache relief that don’t require a migraines doctor supervision:

  • Lavender Oil — Lavender is an essential oil known for its exquisite, calming scent, and it’s also a remedy for your aching head. Use lavender in oil form, putting several drops on a handkerchief and inhaling. You can also add a few drops to two cups of boiling water and inhale the healing vapors. Don’t drink it, though, or you’ll end up with more problems than a headache.
  • Peppermint Oil — Another essential oil, peppermint oil dilates constricted blood vessels that cause headaches. Its secret ingredient is menthol, which controls blood flow. A versatile headache remedy, it can also be combined with water and massaged into the temples or back of the neck. It has numbing properties that quell the pain.
  • Cinnamon — Cinnamon is more than sugar and spice and everything nice. It’s also on the frontlines of the war against headaches. Enlist it to combat your headache by grinding it into powder, adding water and making a thick paste. Spread it on your forehead and temples, lie down for half an hour, then rinse with tepid water.
  • Feverfew — Feverfew is a supplement derived from the daisy family. It comes in tablet form and can be obtained at health food stores or the vitamins section of pharmacies. It works by reducing inflammation and releasing pressure from nerves.
  • Ginger — Ginger is the heavyweight of natural headache treatments. Capable of delivering instant relief, it eases the pain by reducing inflammation of the head’s blood vessels, and staves off nausea accompanying migraines. Create a miracle elixir by steeping ginger root for tea or by combining equal parts ginger juice and lemon juice.

With these simple, natural headache remedies, you can be your own migraine doctor. The ingredients are easy to obtain and are available in numerous forms. They can transform desperation, misery and despair into sweet relief.