Migraine Awareness Week: Understanding Migraines and Natural Relief Strategies
In this blog, we will explore what a migraine is and how to recognise their presence, as well as exploring natural methods for finding relief.
Unravelling the Migraine Phenomenon
A migraine is a type of headache that is caused by a neurological problem. In the UK alone, approximately 10 million individuals encounter migraines during their lifetime.
Identifying Migraines: Unveiling the Signs
Below are some of the common signs and symptoms of migraines.
- Throbbing, pounding or a pulsating pain on one/both sides of your head, back of your eyes, cheeks, or temples
- Nausea and vomiting
- Sensitivity to light, sound, or smells
- Tiredness and fatigue
- Inability to focus
- Changes in your body temperature – too hot/cold
- Abdominal pain
- Visual effects/aura
Migraines Vs. Headaches: What is the difference?
Headaches and migraines, though both involving head discomfort, exhibit distinctive characteristics that set them apart. Headaches, a broader term, encompass various types of head pain, often ranging from mild to moderate in intensity, presenting as a steady, dull ache or pressure. They can result from factors like tension, stress, or sinus issues, usually without accompanying symptoms. On the other hand, migraines represent a more intense and complex subset of headaches. Featuring throbbing or pulsating pain, typically on one side of the head, migraines are often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, sound, or smells, and occasionally visual disturbances. These symptoms, along with the potential for longer duration and triggers such as hormonal changes or sensory stimuli, distinguish migraines from more typical headaches.
Natural Relief: Strategies to Consider
1. Essential Oils
Essential oils, such as lavender and peppermint, emerge as potent allies in this battle. Scientifically proven to alleviate stress and inflammation, these oils can be effectively applied by massaging them onto the forehead or temples. Alternatively, inhaling a few drops from your hands can also offer relief.
Counterintuitive as it may sound, dehydration frequently acts as a trigger for migraines. To thwart this, maintaining a consistent water intake throughout the day becomes pivotal. If plain water lacks appeal, experiment with stylish bottles, herbal teas, or infused water with fruits.
Regular engagement in yoga serves as a holistic aid for both physical and mental wellness. Through its emphasis on deliberate stretches and mindful breathing, yoga facilitates relaxation, tension release, and anxiety reduction – a triumvirate of benefits that can minimise the stressors culminating in migraines.
4. Frozen Gel Eye Masks
A freezer-stored frozen gel eye mask ought to be a staple in every household. By gently applying it to your eyes, temples, forehead, cheeks, or even neck, you can experience a soothing reduction in discomfort and pain. The cooling effect significantly curtails inflammation, providing much-needed relief.
Originating from Chinese medicine, acupuncture taps into pressure points across the body, including the head and neck, to stimulate circulation. This therapeutic approach, involving fine needle insertion, holds promise for migraine prevention. Consistent weekly sessions are suggested for optimal results.
By raising awareness and fostering a holistic approach, we aim to bring relief and empowerment to those grappling with migraines.