Suffering From Headaches? 8 Ways to Relieve Them That Actually Work

By Krista


Last Updated: December 8, 2022

Headaches aren’t anyone's idea of fun.

When your head is aching, and you can’t function properly, it’s near impossible to get anything done. Often, it ends up becoming a waiting game. We might pop an ibuprofen, patiently watching the clock click by until it kicks in. 

  • But is there a better way?
  • What else can you do?

In this article, we explore eight ways to deal with those headaches (and they actually work!). Keep reading to find out more.



What are the 4 Types of Headaches?

Headaches vary in frequency, intensity, location, and cause.

However, the four most common types of headaches include migraines, tension headaches, cluster headaches, and hypnic headaches. 

Migraines occur on one side of the head and tend to last between a couple of hours to a few days.

Many people notice they have light and sound sensitivities during these episodes.

Tension headaches, however, feel like a tight band around your head. 

Cluster headaches are short headaches that occur many times in one day.

Lastly, hypnic headaches occur at night, typically around the same time.


What Type of Headache Should I Worry About?

Most headaches aren’t anything serious.

However, some can indicate a more serious condition is at play, such as a brain tumor, aneurysm, brain injury, or meningitis. If you experience sudden head pain, always seek out emergency medical help to eliminate life-threatening causes.



What Causes a Headache?

Headaches occur due to various causes.

They can happen partially because of genetics, but also due to:

  • dehydration
  • stress
  • muscular injury or tension
  • poor posture
  • fluctuating hormones
  • undereating
  • lack of sleep
  • bright lights
  • loud noises
  • caffeine
  • spicy food
  • medication

Knowing your triggers can help prevent recurring headaches. A good way to keep track of this is by creating a “headache journal.” This can help you track the time, triggers, and more regarding your headaches, helping you narrow down the cause and eliminate it.

Related Article: Text Neck: 7 Simple Exercises to Help You Fix it & 6 Ways You Can Prevent it



What Takes Away a Headache Naturally?

So, let’s get to it! How can you get rid of your headache and continue your day? Here are eight ways to deal with your headaches.


1. Try a Cold or Hot Compress

For migraines, you probably benefit more from using a cold compress on your forehead.

If you don’t have a cold compress, place ice cubes in a sealed back and wrap them with a towel or paper towel. With cold or hot compresses, always make sure there is a towel between your skin and the compress to avoid damage.

Hot compresses may help tension type headaches. Since these headaches frequently occur due to tight or aggravated muscles around the neck, placing a warm compress around the neck and shoulders can help you find some relief.


2. Take Out That Ponytail!

Yes, wearing your hair in a tight bun or ponytail can lead to headaches.

Similarly, a tight hat, headband, or goggles can also lead to headaches. If you must wear any of these items, do so across set intervals and take breaks without them. 


3. Prioritize Your Sleep

This might not be a quick fix.

However, if you’re prone to frequent headaches, there might be something going awry within your lifestyle, such as your sleeping patterns. And inadequate sleep has further negative health repercussions, such as increasing your risk of developing a chronic and life-threatening disease.

Work on nailing down a proper bedtime routine. Aim to good to bed and wake up at the same time. Create an ideal sleeping environment for yourself (A cool, quiet, and dark room).


4. Hydrate!

Sometimes, the simple solution is best.

When dehydrated, we are more prone to headaches. So, drink up! Plan to bring a water bottle with you throughout your day. And don’t forget, especially if you’re working out in the heat, to replenish those electrolytes!


5. Try Relaxing With Essential Oils

Essential oils have been used for therapeutic purposes for hundreds of years (if not longer!).

For headache remedies, research shows that using lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus scents can help reduce headache intensity or occurrence. 

Simply bring these essential oils with you, then rub a bit on your inner wrists or temples. To enhance their effect, try performing some deep belly breathing to the count of four.

Related Article: What is Aromatherapy? 5 Benefits & How it Can Help You in Your Every Day


6. Avoid High-Histamine Foods

While you never want to force yourself into an overly restrictive diet, sometimes, our diet is the culprit.

This is why tracking what you do around the time of your headaches can help eliminate them! For instance, high-histamine foods, like beer, wine, fermented foods, and cured meats can trigger migraines. 

Cutting out these foods can help reduce the occurrence of these headaches. In turn, you won’t be held back by them!


7. Drink Caffeine

For some, caffeine might actually cause headaches.

For others, such as us coffee drinkers, caffeine can help stop a headache in its tracks. The reason caffeine may help eliminate headaches is due to its ability to increase alertness, improve mood, and constrict blood vessels. 

Caffeine may also enhance and speed up the effect of ibuprofen or other headache-fighting medication. 


8. Use Ginger

Ginger has antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties.

In fact, studies even show how ginger has helped individuals reduce their migraine symptoms. It can also decrease any nausea or dizziness, which is frequently associated with various common headaches. 

You can choose to take a ginger supplement, ginger tea, or simply add ginger to a smoothie or meal. 



Headache Begone!

You shouldn’t have to live with frequent and recurring headaches.

The truth is that, usually, by making a few lifestyle changes (such as with your diet, exercise, sleep habits, and stress levels), you can lead a pain-free life. 

Plus, having the above eight tips ready in your back pocket can help you combat a headache when it does occur! This way, you can lead your life on your terms, without an aching head holding you back.

Read Next: 5 Surprising Reasons You Should Book That Relaxing Massage Right Now

Photo by Ron Lach


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