6 Proven Home Remedies for Migraine Relief

Home Remedies for Migraine

Apart from the preventive medications and prescription drugs available to reduce the frequency and severity of migraine attacks, there are various therapies and natural remedies that you can try at your home to get respite from the pesky migraine pain. These non-medical treatment methods can be used as alternatives or as a supplement to the prescribed medications to facilitate immediate relief from pain.

Here is a list of such home remedies which respond quite well to migraine headaches and are entirely safe to try at home. While you try these remedies, make sure you observe the response and figure out the ways that work best for you using trial and error method.

Cure 1: Ice Packs

ice pack
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How to Use?

When a migraine strikes you, apply an ice pack or a frozen gel on your forehead, temples, and neck area for 10 to 20 minutes. Cold therapies can be safely used with other drugs and therapies.

Why Does It Work?

Ice packs will make the area numb, which will likely reduce the sensation of pain.

Does It Work?

Talking about migraine pain management, both Mayo Clinic and National Headache Foundation(1) stresses the relevance of using cold compresses for pain relief. In a clinical study of 100 people with migraine, 75 respondents have reported cold therapy gave them some relief from pain.

[Also Read: Daith Piercings for Migraine Treatment]

Cure 2: Heat Pads

How to Use?

Take a heating pad and apply it on the forehead, neck area, and temples for 15-20 minutes. Applying heat compresses on the head can give you relief from the severe pain of migraine.

Why Does It Work?

Heat pads promote muscle relaxation and alleviate the pain. Even a hot shower will give you a similar effect.

Cure 3: Natural Supplements for Migraine

There are a handful of herbal medications and at-home chemicals that help migraine sufferers to relieve the pain and other related symptoms.

1. Ginger For Migraine

Ginger Benefits
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How Does It Work?

Ginger is the best known herbal remedy for calming the nerves and relieving the pain associated with both tension headaches and migraine. You can have ginger in any forms like capsule, gel, tea, powder, oil, etc. The chemical components in ginger such as zingiberol, gingerol, and zingiberene have anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.

Does It Work?

A clinical study(2) to compare the efficacy of ginger and sumatriptan (a universal prescription drug for migraine) shows that both have similar effects on decreasing pain. The study says the clinical adverse effects of ginger were less than sumatriptan.

How to Use?

Ginger water- Drinking warm water mixed with ginger powder is very useful in migraine pain management. Take a cup of water and add a half teaspoon of ginger powder. Stir well and sip it.

Ginger oil- Applying diluted ginger oil on the forehead is good for relieving mild headaches. You can use coconut oil or olive oil to dilute the ginger oil. Take one spoon of coconut oil and add 3-4 drops of ginger oil to oil. Apply it on the forehead as required.

Ginger tea- To get respite from nausea and vomiting associated with migraine; you can sip a cup of ginger tea.

2. Caffeine For Migraine

How Does It Work?

Given its anti-inflammatory properties, caffeine is a common ingredient in many analgesics. Moreover, it has vasoconstrictive properties that cause narrowing of the blood vessels. This restricts blood flow, which in turn gives pain relief.

How to Use?

Drinking a cup of caffeinated beverage along with pain-relieving tablets not only boosts the medicine’s function but also make its effect stay longer. Some studies show that caffeine, when combined with aspirin or acetaminophen, increases the pain-relieving effect by 40%.

What Should You Know?

Caffeine can trigger or alleviate migraine headache; hence, you need to find out how your body reacts to it judiciously.

3. Magnesium supplements For Migraine

Magnesium Benefits
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Why Does It Work?

Research studies show people with magnesium deficiency are susceptible to frequent migraine attacks. Also, some studies show magnesium levels in the brain dip during a migraine. Therefore, magnesium supplements may provide quick relief from migraine pain. Boosting your magnesium levels is a safe and cost-effective way to reduce the frequency of migraine attacks and decrease the severity of pain.

How to Use?

You can take magnesium supplements under the guidance of a physician. Also, fill your plate with foods that are rich in magnesium.

What Should You Eat?

You can include the quantity of magnesium-rich foods in your diet, Spinach, kale, figs, avocado, banana, legumes, salmon, tuna, etc. are rich sources of magnesium.

[Also Read: Magnesium for Migraine Headaches]

4. Lavender Oil For Migraine

Why Does It Work?

Application and inhalation of lavender oil is an effective natural remedy for migraine-sufferers. According to research(3), inhalation of lavender essential oil is an effective and safe treatment modality in migraine pain management.  Peppermint oil, rosemary oil, eucalyptus oil, etc. have a similar effect.

How to Use?

Add 3-4 drops of lavender oil in a spoon of coconut oil. Gently massage on your temples and forehead. Allow yourself to enjoy the scent of the oil in a quiet, dark room for some time. You can use a vaporizer, oil diffuser or even sprinkle a few drops of the oil in a tissue paper and breathe the aroma.

Cure 4: Massage for Pain Relief

Massage Women
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Why Does It Work?

Massage therapy is an effective way to cope up with migraine headaches. It increases the blood circulation to head and thus eases up the pain.

What to Do Instantly?

Stretch and massage the neck, temples, and base of the scalp for 15-20 minutes. You can understand the pressure points and train yourself to do a pain-relieving massage to get quick relief anytime you need it.

How to Manage Migraine Using Massage Therapy?

A soothing professional therapeutic full-body massage weekly is expected to reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. A research study(4) published in the International Journal of Neuroscience shows a 30-minute massage for five weeks consecutively reduced migraine symptoms and severity of pain in the subjects.

[Also Read: Massage to Treat Migraines]

Cure 5 – Herbal Tea

Although there is no scientific data to prove its efficacy, tea works great for a migraine attack. A cup of tea with natural flavorings such as peppermint, ginger, chamomile, clove, or feverfew reduces the intensity of migraine pain in a few minutes.

How Does It Work?

Herbal tea promotes relaxation, calms the nerves, decreases inflammation, and makes you feel better quickly.

How to Use?

Sip a cup of herbal tea at the onset of a migraine attack. Relax in a quiet, dark room for a while.

Cure 6: Meditation and Yoga

Meditation Women
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Practicing meditation and mindfulness exercises is yet another effective way to reduce the severity of migraine headache at home.

How Does It Work?

Meditation and yoga promotes stress management and decrease anxiety, balances the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain, and aids pain management, to name a few.  It eases up tension and stress that accumulates in the mind and body, which are often migraine triggers.

How to Do?

As soon as the primary symptoms start showing up, opt to sit in a dark, quiet room and meditate for 15-20 minutes. Bright lights and loud noises may aggravate the symptoms; hence, it is better to avoid it.

Can I Do Meditation When I Have Migraine Pain?

You may find it difficult to meditate when you go through a migraine if you haven’t done it before. However, practicing meditation regularly helps you in coping with migraine in several ways.

Prevention- The Best Home Remedy

Prevention is the best cure you can get if you are a migraine sufferer. Many everyday things are found to be potent migraine triggers in people.

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What are the common triggers?

The typical migraine triggers include stress, certain foods, drinks, medications, hormonal changes, menstruation, changes in weather, scent, visual triggers, lack of sleep, noises, allergies, changes in caffeine intake, emotional changes, etc.

How to Prevent Migraine?

The triggers for a migraine attack vary from one to one. Therefore, the first step to prevent the onset of a migraine is to find out the personal triggers. Once you know the triggers, you can take precautionary medicines if you accidentally indulge in it.

What Are the Tips to Prevent Migraine?

  • Watch what you eat and drink if you get frequent migraine attacks. Certain foods like artificial sweeteners, chocolates, caffeinated drinks, processed meats, age-old cheese, mayonnaise, etc. are common foods that trigger a migraine. By identifying and avoiding the specific food triggers, you can prevent a migraine attack.
  • Keep a migraine journal to note down the triggers, primary signs, symptoms, duration, and severity of pain while you get an attack to avoid one later.
  • If a change in weather is a migraine trigger for you, make sure you take the necessary precautions while you go out. Try to stay indoors as far as possible to reduce the exposure to the weather outside in such conditions.
  • For individuals suffering from migraine, it is highly recommended to eat meals at the right time and maintain a proper sleep schedule. Skipping meals, fasting, starving, and dehydration can trigger a migraine. It is essential to ensure that you stay hydrated and eat at regular intervals as a precaution to migraine.
  • Exercise is an inevitable part of a healthy lifestyle. Regular exercise and relaxation workouts are helpful in the prevention of migraine. However, intense workouts may trigger migraine in some people.

The various prescription medicines and treatment methods for migraine may offer relief from its symptoms immediately. However, there is a risk of side effects with frequent usage of pain-killers for headache. On the other hand, natural remedies are often free of side-effects, cost-effective, and have been proven to work well in alleviating the symptoms of migraine.

The best part of using home-made medicines is that it can be taken along with the prescribed drugs and relieve the migraine pain quickly. Or else you can entirely depend on the best home remedy that works for you and avoids the prescription medicines. It is more affordable than prescription drugs and easy to obtain. The home remedies induce natural healing and strengthen the immune system.

Since there is no complete cure for migraine, the best way to manage the disease is by leading a healthy lifestyle, avoiding the triggers, taking immediate home remedies, and having prescription medicine if needed. However, if the symptoms of migraine persist for a longer duration or continue to worsen after taking home remedies, make sure you seek medical help.


FAQs

1. Is Home Remedy Effective for Migraine?

Yes. Various research studies show migraine headache can be effectively managed by relevant home-remedies and herbal supplements. However, the effectiveness of home remedies depends on the severity of the migraine attack and your overall health condition. The home remedies serve as the first line of defense at the onset of a migraine attack and ease the pain. Moreover, natural remedies reduce the frequency and severity of migraine and its symptoms.

2. Are Home Remedies for Migraine Safe to Use?

Yes. It is pretty safe to use home remedies if taken at right times and on moderate quantity. The home remedies are mostly comprised of natural elements which are secure to use and free of side effects.

Home remedies like massage therapy, aromatherapy, yoga and meditation, dietary changes, etc. are commonly found to be effective in migraine patients and are backed by scientific studies. Magnesium supplements, riboflavin, etc. are also safe to be used if taken after consulting with a physician and evaluating your health condition.

3. Can I Prevent a Migraine Attack?

Yes. It is possible to prevent a migraine attack if you carefully watch the triggers and take necessary precautions. The most effective way to treat migraine is by avoiding the cause of it. By switching to a healthy lifestyle and avoiding the factors that trigger a migraine, one can effectively prevent the onset of a migraine headache. Also, identifying the first signs of migraine allows you to take precautionary home remedies and avoid worsening of its symptoms.

4. What Is a Migraine Trigger? Can I Take Preventive Medication Against a Trigger?

A trigger is any factor like an external stimulus, event, or a change that leads to a migraine attack. It is not easy to figure out the exact migraine triggers. It can be anything from a difference in the physical environment to hormonal imbalances in the body.

Stress, anxiety, emotional outbursts, lack of sleep, weather changes, the aroma of individual components, etc. are known to be common triggers for migraine. The triggers and experience of migraine are different for each of you.

By identifying the triggers, you are one step close to effectively managing the migraine pain. You can take preventive medication or home remedies when you are exposed to a migraine trigger and thus prevent the pain from worsening.

5. Is It Necessary to Seek Medical Help Whenever I Get a Migraine Attack?

Not always. Usually, migraine headaches do not require urgent care. It can be effectively managed using preventive techniques, home remedies, over-the-counter medications, and prescription medications as needed.

However, if your headache is accompanied by symptoms like severe vomiting, blurry vision, seizures, sudden loss in balance, numbness, etc. seek immediate medical help. Keep track of your migraine symptoms, which will help you to realize when you need medical support.

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