If you’ve ever suffered from a headache you know how debilitating it can be.
Depending on the type of headache you have, it can cause throbbing pain and sensitivity to light and sound among other reactions.
A headache can last for hours to days, and the pain can be even severe enough to interfere with daily activities.
Known Triggers For A Headache
For many people, causes of headaches or triggers are related too
•High Blood Pressure
•Tight Muscles in Neck and Shoulders
•Reaction To Food Additives
•Chemicals That Trigger Inflammation in the Blood Vessels
According to WebMD, not only medicines you take, but also changes in your hormones, lack of sleep, lack of food, can be triggers for a headache.
Ten percent (10%) of migraine suffers are due too tyramine, a natural compound that forms in protein rich foods as they age.
Essential Oils To Help Relieve Your Headache
Researchers have identified that the best essential oils for a headache are lavender, rosemary, chamomile, peppermint, and eucalyptus oils (Source: The Effectiveness of Aromatherapy in Reducing Pain).
According to the journal Pain Research and Treatment, aromatherapy essential oils that are good for headaches work in two ways.
First, the pain-relieving oils are absorbed through the skin and help to release muscle pain and tension.
Second, the aromas of certain essential oils can result in immediate pain reduction when inhaled.
Researchers have also found that some essential oils are good for headaches because they help cool the skin and increase blood flow to the affected area.
This has an analgesic effect when essential oil blends are applied to the temples.
Lavender emits a scent that encourages relaxation and is great for stress-related headaches.
Lavender was used as far back as the year 1098 for headache relief. It also helps relieve nausea, tension, and is a analgesic or pain killer.
Medical studies found that 74% of volunteers who suffer from headaches and migraines found relief using lavender.
The study reported that lavender oil helped 75% of the time, were as high dose Tylenol only worked 15% of the time.
For hundreds of years the aroma and cooling properties of peppermint has been used as a headache remedy.
Scientific research has revealed that using peppermint oil for a headache could be as effective as paracetamol.
One study showed that a 10% peppermint essential oil blend helped to ease the intensity of headaches in 15 minutes.
Lemon balm is another easy-to-grow and fragrant herb that’s helpful to relieve tension and those headaches caused by anxiety.
It also acts as a mild sedative if your headache is preventing you from getting much-needed rest.
Sage and Rosemary
Sage and rosemary are excellent stress-headache relievers.
Rosemary can help to improve circulation and can stimulate the nerves – helping to relieve tension and cluster headaches.
Sages aroma as an essential oil can provide relief from tension and nerve-caused headaches.
Several studies show that Eucalyptus as an essential oil has a unique anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect when applied topically.
It treats a headache by enhancing blood circulation around the temples and the affected areas, and as a result, relieves tension and pain.
How To Apply Essential Oils
You can use essential oils by themselves or as a blend to relieve pain and tension.
It is best to use these oils with a carrier oil such as extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, or sweet almond oil.
A carrier oil will dilute the essential oil, making it safe to apply to the skin.
Massage the oils into your temples, behind the ears, and at the top of your neck.
Do Not Consume Essential Oils
Always remember not to consume essential oils, as they are meant for external use only.
Stillpoint Aromatics points out that essential oils are volatile chemical cocktails consisting of hundreds of chemical components from ten or so chemical families. They are extremely concentrated.
As an example of extreme concentration is rose oil. For one distilled drop, it requires 40 to 60 roast petals.
Another example is the distilled oils of chamomile. One drop is equal to 35 cups of herbal tea.
Repeated consumption of essential oils can cause serious health conditions. Some effects include:
•Stomach irritation (This is the most common effect)
•Ulceration in mouth, esophageal tract, and stomach lining
•Severe allergic reaction
•Teeth enamel is worn away
Therefore essential oils have proven to be effective to reduce or eliminate the effects of a headache when used topically or externally.