4 Essential Oils for Headache Relief and How to Use Them
Nearly every person on the planet has experienced headache. You may not always be sure what is the cause of the headache because there are numerous causes.
Some of them are hormones, fatigue, allergies, stress, low blood sugar, nutritional deficiencies, poor posture and drug and alcohol consumption. Unfortunately, the cause can also be a combination of the causes mentioned above.
When people think of a headache, the first thing they think to treat it with is a painkiller. However, bear in mind that painkillers can have severe side effects such as liver and kidney damage.
Also they do not deal the cause of the problem, they just solve it at the moment.
The next time you experience a headache, or maybe you experience headaches frequently, consider solving the problem using natural remedies. Perhaps you have already tried some, but have you tried the right one? We are recommending essential oils.
Why essential oils? Because they effectively and safely treat the trigger of a headache, at the same time they can get to the cause of your problem. Remember that the essential oils do not work temporarily.
Also, you can have the control of the amount and the dose of the essential oils; you can adjust it yourself according to your headache.
The Way Essential Oils Helps
In case of a migraine and headache people most commonly use pain relievers. However, the essential oils are safer and more efficient alternative.
The essential oils can reduce stress, help circulation and can provide relief. Other that the numerous health benefits the essential oils also boost the immune system.
In women the hormonal changes are one primary cause of a headache. How? Well, what can trigger a headache are the fluctuations in estrogen, especially during or before their period. Because that is when the levels of estrogen drop.
Also, there are some women that because of the hormonal imbalances have migraines during menopause or pregnancy. But you should know that hormonal medications might make the headaches worse, that is why we recommend essential oils.
The essential oil treatment is natural and gentle, unlike the drugs. Soothing oils that are used to help with hormonal imbalances and PMS symptoms as a migraine and headaches are rosemary oil and lavender. Rosemary and lavender oil can ease tension and relieve your pain.
Stress is a major trigger for a headache. You can reduce stress by using peppermint and lavender oil aromatically. Also the change in your sleeping patterns can cause a headache.
In such case, you can use lavender oil due to the fact that it works like a mild sedative. The lavender oil can help if you lack sleep or suffer from insomnia.
Sinus pressure, specific foods, allergies and intense physical exertion can also trigger headaches. You can eliminate or at least minimize the triggers with essential oils. These astonishing oils can treat almost any health problem.
Essential Oil For Headache Relief
1. Lavender Oil
The lavender oil has many therapeutic properties. It works like a sedative, anticonvulsant, calming, anti-anxiety, antidepressant, and anxiolytic agent and also as a sedative. That is why it can relieve your tension and stress and also prompt relaxation.
There is evidence that is effective for neurological disorders and conditions.
Researchers report the topical and aromatic use of the lavender oil because of its primary constituents linalyl acetate, and linalool can affect the limbic system. The primary constituents absorb rapidly into the skin. Also it can lead to depression of the central nervous system.
That is why headaches of anxiety and similar conditions can be treated with lavender oil.
The benefits of this oil are that it can relieve the feeling of disturbed sleep and restlessness, known symptoms of headaches. The lavender oil can also regulate the levels of serotonin which can help to minimize the pain in the nervous system which may cause a migraine.
To relieve stress, help with your sleep, to boost your mood and to reduce your muscle tension you can diffuse 5 drops of lavender oil in your office or at home.
You can topically use the lavender oil to relieve tension and stress headaches, just apply it to your wrists, temples or the back of your neck.
To relax, just add 5 to 10 drops of this amazing oil in a warm-water bath and inhale and take deep breaths. That is how the sedative properties shall start to kick in, and it can reduce your headache tension. That is how you will relax your body and mind at the same time.
Studies on the effect of lavender oil
In 2012, the European Neurology published a study that made the discovery that this particular oil is effective and can manage a migraine and headaches. In this clinical trial that was placebo-controlled there were 74 participants.
This group i.e. treatment group when they had migraine headache for fifteen minutes they inhaled the lavender oil. The patients then had to record the severity of their headache and symptoms in intervals of 30-minute, for 2 hours.
There was a statistically significant difference between the two groups. In the treatment group from 129 cases of headache, 92 partially or entirely responded to the inhalation with lavender oil.
On the other hand, in the control group from 68 headache cases, 32 responded to placebo. There were more responders in the group which used lavender, and less in the placebo group.
2. Rosemary Oil
Even in folk medicine rosemary oil was used for poor circulation and headaches. The rosemary oil has analgesic, stimulating and anti-inflammatory properties. It can improve the alertness and your personal orientation. This oil also has a calming effect.
This oil can also reduce emotional triggers and stress. In addition, can soothe your upset stomach and also can help you with your digestion, those are considered to be symptoms of a headache.
In 2013, Addiction and Health published a study that made an evaluation of the efficiency of this oil as an herbal therapy for reduction of withdrawal symptoms in patients that had a history of opium abuse.
Some symptoms of opium withdrawal are insomnia, fever, dysphoric mood, muscle aches, headaches, and nausea. So the treatment with rosemary can reduce these symptoms.
The patients for four weeks took it internally. This treatment treated convulsions, eased the pain, reduced muscle jerks and tension and improved the sleeping pattern of the patients.
Next time you have a headache or a migraine you can take the rosemary treatment internally, just by adding it to your soup, water or tea. If you want to reduce the pain during your headache, you can mix one teaspoon of coconut oil with two drops of rosemary oil with two drops of peppermint oil.
Use the mixture to massage your forehead, temples and the back of your neck.
3. Peppermint Oil
The benefits of the peppermint oil are its ability to inhibit the muscle contractions, its cooling effect on the skin that is long-lasting, and its role to stimulate the blood flow in the forehead in case of topical use.
You can use it topically to ease a tension headache. Just use this miracle peppermint essential oil and apply it on your temples and forehead.
To improve your blood circulation, to relieve tension and to reduce the pain you can dilute two drops of peppermint essential oil with coconut oil and rub it in on the back of the neck, your forehead and shoulders.
Studies on the effect of the peppermint oil
In 1996 there was a study that made an analysis on 41 patients and around 164 headache attacks.
The patients were analyzed in double-blind, placebo-controlled study. They applied it topically 15 to 30 minutes after a headache began.
Patients said that they felt relief. And peppermint essential oil proved to be cost-effective and tolerated alternative when it comes to headache therapy. No adverse side effect were reported after the use of this essential oil.
In 1995, the International Journal of Phytotherapy and Phytopharmacology published a study in which the researchers investigated the treatment of essential oil.
This study had 32 participants that got evaluated, and they made an investigation of the essential oil treatment by comparing the treatment and baseline measurements.
The treatment that was effective was the combination of ethanol, eucalyptus essential oil, and peppermint essential oil.
The researchers applied the mixture above mentioned to the participant’s temples and forehead with a small sponge. The mixture had mentally relaxing and muscle-soothing effect.
When the researchers mixed the ethanol with peppermint oil, they came to the discovery that it reduces the sensitivity during your headache.
4. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus act as an expectorant and cleanse your body from harmful microorganisms and toxins. Also, it eliminates pressure in your sinus and helps with the nasal airways, which can cause a severe headache. In the same time, it promotes emotional balance, also it boosts your mood.
The Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine published a clinical trial. The clinical trial reports that by inhaling this oil can lead to decrease in pain and also in the blood pressure.
Fifty-two patients were involved in the study, and these patients recently underwent knee replacement surgery.
The oil stimulated emotional stability which resulted with anti-inflammatory effects and reduced the formation of edema. These relaxing and pain-reducing effects may be beneficial to those with tension headaches.
In 2011, there was a study in Israel that made an evaluation of the efficiency of the oil when it is applied on patients that have respiratory conditions which often cause sore throat, tension headaches, and cough. According to the patients, the eucalyptus oil reduced their runny nose and improved their breathing.
According to researchers, the oil had anti-inflammatory effects because it was used to help with respiratory conditions. The oil exhibited antimicrobial, antiviral and antibacterial properties that eased sinus pressure. Inflammatory response can cause this.
To eliminate nasal build up and to clear your airways you can dilute carrier oil with 2 to 4 drops of this oil. Then apply it topically to your temples, forehead, back of the neck and your chest.
How to Use Essential Oils for Headache Relief
1. Sugar Headache
A headache caused by low blood sugar levels. Mix an equal amount of coconut, rosemary and lavender oil.
Apply it topically to the forehead, temples, and back of the neck. Also, for internal use, you can add one drop of rosemary essential oil to a cup of soup or smoothie.
2. Migraine Headache:
This migraine is a painful and severe type of a headache that connects with sensitivity to light, pain, and nausea. Hormonal change, stress, anxiety and sleep deprivation can trigger migraines.
To reduce migraine headaches and to ease the feeling of anxiety and nausea you can massage peppermint or lavender oil into the back of your neck or temples.
3. Sinus Headache:
A sinus headache happens when membranes of the sinus cavities swell or inflame ; you feel pressure in your forehand. To relieve sinus tension and to open your nasal passages you can topically add eucalyptus oil on your temples, nose, and chest.
4. Tension Headache:
Tension Headache i.e. stress headaches are known as constant, dull pain or pressure. The feelings of pressure brings them.To reduce tension and to alleviate the stress you can topically use peppermint or eucalyptus oil on your wrists, forehead, and temples.
Also, you can add five to ten drops of lavender oil in a warm-water bath to ease your mind and relax.
Side Effects of These Oils
- You need to do a test on small area of the skin before you apply any of the oil mentioned above to larger areas. This quick patch test is a must especially if you have never used essential oils before.
- Remember always to dilute the oil first before you use it. Especially in sensitive areas such as the forehead and nose.
- For internal use remember that 1 to 2 drops is enough.
- Do not exceed to use the oils more than 4.
- Always take a break for at least a week.