Migraines are one of the most common ailments worldwide and typically take the form of a severe headache felt as throbbing pain on one side of the head. This condition can also cause severe pain in the back of the head, followed by nausea, sensitivity to light and sound, as well as vomiting in extreme cases. Migraine attacks can last from a couple of hours to several days, and can be so severe that they interrupt a person’s daily activities and affect their quality of life.
One or two days before you experience a migraine attack, you may notice the following symptoms:
- Changes to your mood or depression
- Increase in appetite
- Stiffness in the neck
- Increased urination
During the actual episodes of severe migraine attacks, you may experience the following symptoms:
- Visual disturbances, such as seeing flashes of light or bright spots
- Pins and needles in the leg or arm
- Difficulty talking
- Hearing buzzing sounds
- Uncontrollable movements
If you are struggling with the pain and are seeking migraine relief outside of medication, here are 7 tips to reduce or even eliminate your symptoms and live a pain-free life.
- Exercise regularly
You should exercise regularly, not just every time you’re about to get a migraine. A regular workout can prevent migraine symptoms by causing endorphins to be released into your body. Endorphins are the feel-good chemicals that eliminate pain and ease stress
- Rest in a dark room
Sensitivity to light is a common trigger for migraine attacks. Although it is currently poorly understood, scientists believe that the optic nerve, which communicates between the eyes and the brain, may trigger the pain. This is why many doctors advise migraine sufferers to sit in a quiet and dark room whenever they are about to experience an attack. Sitting in a dark room is one of the most common natural self-care practices that people who suffer from migraines can seek.
- Take magnesium supplements
Magnesium is a mineral that helps to keep blood pressure at a healthy level. It also promotes and regulates muscle function and heart health. When your body lacks magnesium, you are more likely to experience migraine headaches. People who take magnesium supplements daily can treat or prevent migraine symptoms. A daily dosage of 400-500mg is the recommended amount needed to help prevent migraine attacks.
- Stay hydrated
Dehydration leads to headaches. This is because your blood pressure levels can either increase or decrease in response, and that is an invite to a migraine attack. Make sure you drink enough water every day to prevent headaches from occurring. If you find it hard to drink plain water, add some lemon juice or watermelon juice for an enhanced taste.
- Massage therapy
Massage therapy can effectively treat migraine pain. Temple massage, for example, increases blood flow to the head and can relieve discomfort almost immediately. Massage therapy can also minimise pain from trigger points. These points are located in hyper-irritable tissue areas that are extremely sensitive and can transmit pain to other areas of the body. A regular head massage or trigger point therapy will help decrease pain in the neck and back of the head.
- Take a warm shower or bath
Taking a warm bath or shower will help relieve your migraine temporarily. If you are in severe pain and need a longer-term solution, consider adding peppermint oil, lavender oil, and eucalyptus oil to your bathwater. The aromas of these essential oils are ideal for relieving your headache. You can even add a few drops of these oils onto the shower floor a few minutes before you get in. Run the warm water and let the steam blend with the fragrance of the oils. Try this method two or three times a week for optimal results.
When the first sign of a migraine is coming on, mix a teaspoon of powdered ginger in warm water and add honey for taste. You should notice your migraine subsiding within an hour after drinking. You may also consider making ginger tea with the juice of half a lemon and/or honey. Simply slice a quarter of the ginger in small pieces and brew it in water. You will soon feel pain-free and be able to get back to your normal routine.