Natural Home Remedies for Migraines

When a migraine strikes, you may experience severe headache pain, often on only one side of your head. The Mayo Clinic reports that a migraine headache may throb or pulsate and you may experience increased sensitivity to bright light or sounds. While prescription medications are available to treat some migraine sufferers, you may be able to reduce the frequency, duration or severity of your headaches with natural home remedies. See your doctor for an initial diagnosis to rule out an underlying disorder before using home remedies.

Diet

The diet remedy for migraine sufferers focuses on identifying and avoiding potential headache triggers. “The Doctors Book of Home Remedies II” from the editors of Prevention magazine suggests keeping a diary of your eating habits and a log of your migraines for comparison. Some foods are more likely to trigger a migraine than others, including foods that contain tyramine or monosodium glutamate (MSG). Chocolate and red wine, aged cheeses and food additives are also potential migraine triggers. In addition, avoid artificial sweeteners, especially aspartame, suggests “The Doctors Book of Home Remedies II.”

Lifestyle

The Mayo Clinic recommends reducing stress in your life to reduce migraine episodes. Spend half an hour or longer each day doing something that allows you to relax. Meditation, listening to soft music, deep breathing exercises and yoga may help alleviate migraines triggered by stress.

Sleep between six and eight hours every night and observe regular bedtimes and awakening times to reduce your risk of a migraine, suggests the Mayo Clinic. Oversleeping may trigger a migraine.

Heart health may reduce the incidence of migraine headaches, reports “The Doctors Book of Home Remedies II.” Start a daily aerobic exercise routine, such as walking or bicycling. However, skip the exercise if you have a headache.

Aspirin

Taking one regular-strength aspirin every other day may reduce your risk of migraines, according to “The Doctors Book of Home Remedies II.” Before starting aspirin therapy to reduce your headaches, consult your doctor. Aspirin may conflict with other medications and may decrease your blood’s ability to clot.

Ice

If your migraine is the result of expanded blood vessels, applying an ice pack to your head may ease the pain. Place a soft towel between the ice pack and your head and leave the pack in place for at least three minutes. If you don’t get relief within that time, move it to another spot on your head or on the back of your neck and repeat the procedure. When you do get relief, leave the ice pack in place as long as necessary to stop the pain.

About this Author

Glyn Sheridan is a freelance writer with published credits in regional and national media. Sheridan specializes in health, fitness, construction and business writing. She is also a past editor of “Kansas Women – Focus on Fitness.” Sheridan’s education includes marketing and journalism.