WHAT KIND OF HEADACHE DO YOU HAVE?
Headaches can be triggered by many different conditions but the result is the same. Nerves in the head mucles and blood vessels signal the brain that there is pain. The triggers can be anything from a blow to the head, environmental factors, disease, to emotional distress. There are many different types of headaches, but the most common fall into these categories: tension, migraine, cluster, sinus, and hormonal. Headaches can also be caused by serious medical conditions, so make sure you talk to your doctor about persistent and severe headaches.
The location of a headache can provide clues as to its origin. Some of these may include:
- A headache radiating across the forehead may indicate kidneys issues
- A headache around the temples may indicate thyroid challenges
- A headache in the corners of forehead might be indicating adrenal gland challenges
- A headache over the right eye may be signaling gallbladder upset
- A headache behind the eye(s) may be signaling parasites, compromised pituitary function, or pancreatic congestion
- A headache in the middle of the forehead, above the eyebrows may be indicating sinus issues
- A headache that feels like it is isolated on the right or left side may be an indication of unreconciled emotions
Headaches can also be a result of food choices, unknown food allergies, nutritional deficiencies, and over-all internal inflammation. Supplementing your diet with a high quality source of essential fatty acids (with omega-3 fats) can make a huge difference in your over-all health and reduce the incidence of headaches. Omega’s along with avoiding grain-based foods, sugar and sweets (except naturally sweet fruits), synthetic sweeteners (diet sodas, diet cookies, snacks and the like) will not only reduce the incidence of headaches, but improve health over all!
Nutritional Treatment for Headaches:
doTERRA makes a supplement called xEO Mega which blends 9 essential oils with plant sourced omega oils and asthaxanthin in a nanosomal lipid assimilation system that supports nutrient assimilation. It can help reduce overall inflammation in the body. doTERRA has a complete vitamin line which can help subsidize an already healthy diet.
These are the most common headache. With this headache you will most likely feel constant dull pain like a headband across your forehead and head.
Treatment for a Mild Tension Headache:
• A drop or two of Peppermint oil rubbed on the temples, forehead, and/or back of neck is a simple and effective solution for most. BE CAREFUL not to apply oil too close to the eyes as Peppermint is powerful.
• PastTense is a blend of oils in a handy roll on dispenser that is also very effective and more convenient.
Treatment for more Severe Tension Headaches:
• Use Peppermint or PastTense but follow with a damp, cool compress using a clean hand towel. Apply this compress to the forehead and closed eyes and/or the back of the neck, while resting for a few minutes. Repeat as often as needed and schedule will permit. A few drops of oil may be put directly on the damp towel. Keep oils away from eyes.
• Some will find an inhaler or using cup and inhale may prove advantageous.
Other Oil Blends to consider: BALANCE is an oil blend designed to reduce anxiety by creating a sense of calm and well-being. AROMATOUCH is a blend to relax muscles and calm tension. CITRUS BLISS elevates your mood and reduces stress. DEEP BLUE is a soothing blend that provides instant relief for tired, sore or worn down muscles and joints.
A migraine is a more severe throbbing headache often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, cold hands, sensitivity to sound and light. They can last a few hours or sometimes days. People often mislabel severe tension or hormonal headaches as migraines.
Migraine headaches are caused by enlargement of blood vessels that causes the release of chemicals from nerve fibers that coil around the large arteries of the brain. Enlargement of these blood vessels stretches the nerves that coil around them and causes the nerves to release chemicals. The chemicals cause inflammation, pain, and further enlargement of the artery which magnifies the pain.
Migraine attacks commonly activate the sympathetic nervous system in the body. The sympathetic nervous system is often thought of as the part of the nervous system that controls primitive responses to stress and pain, the so-called “fight or flight” response, and this activation causes many of the symptoms associated with migraine attacks; for example, the increased sympathetic nervous activity in the intestine causes nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Sympathetic activity delays emptying of the stomach into the small intestine and thereby prevents oral medications from entering the intestine and being absorbed. The impaired absorption of oral medications is a common reason for the ineffectiveness of medications taken to treat migraine headaches. The increased sympathetic activity also decreases the circulation of blood, and this leads to pallor of the skin as well as cold hands and feet. Sympathetic activity also contributes to the sensitivity to light and sound sensitivity as well as blurred vision. From MedicineNet.com
Because migraines are so individual and varied, the oils to use will also vary.
2 drops Marjoram
2 drops Geranium
2 drops Helichrysum
2 drops Peppermint
- Add a few drops of Peppermint or Eucalyptus to a tissue or cotton ball and inhale the aroma through the nose, taking in several deep breaths over a 2-3 minute period.
- Massage 2 drops each of Marjoram and Lavender into reflexology points on the web of the hands between the pointer finger and thumb.
- Mix equal portions of Peppermint, Lavender and Marjoram. Apply to temples, top of forehead and back of neck. Then cup hands and hold over mouth and nose, inhaling the aromas deeply.
- Stress migraines respond to 1 drop of Serenity blend or Lavender massaged into the toes or the head reflexology point of the ears.
- Rose blends especially well with Lavender for easing migraine headaches.
- Ginger is helpful not only with migraines, but also with the nausea that often accompanies them. Add 1-2 drops Ginger to 1 tablespoon Sea Salt, and then dissolve in 1 quart of cool water. Soak a cloth in the water and apply as a compress; when compress becomes warm, soak again and reapply
Here is a great link to different migraine protocols and recipes for you to try:
This is one of the most severe of headaches. The name is because they come in repeated frequent attacks or “cluster periods”. The attacks may be 2 or 3 times a day and may last from weeks to months. They may then go away for months or even years. They often begin in the middle of the night. The pain is usually on one side of the head or the other and typically right behind the eye. The pain is intense, constant, and throbbing making it almost impossible to function normally.
Cluster Headache Treatment:
2 drops Basil
2 drops Marjoram
2 drops Peppermint
5 drops Rosemary
Combine oils and apply to the back of the neck at the hairline, on the soles of the feet, and on the web of hands between the thumb and pointer finger. Repeating this application faithfully, twice a week, can help prevent reoccurrence.
Sinus infections can be bacterial, viral, or fungal in origin and can be in the various sinus cavities or the nasal passages. There are four sets of sinus cavities; frontal (in the forehead), maxillary (behind the cheek bones), ethmoid (between the eyes), and the sphenoid (behind the eyes). Besides the three forms of infections, allergens may also t rigger sinusitis. The irritation of allergens or the damage done by infection causes inflammation and an increase and thickening of mucus. These then compound the restriction of airflow and the normal passage of mucus. Since the normal passage of mucus removes undesirable bacteria so restriction then again compounds the problem by not expelling bacteria and potentially leading to a secondary infection.
When the membranes of the sinus cavities become inflamed and swollen there can be pressure around the eyes, cheeks, and forehead area where these cavities are located. This pressure then can result in a sinus headache.Essential oils are particularly effective since many are antibacterial, antifungal, as well as antiviral. Other oils are effective in dealing with the symptoms of runny nose, itchy eyes, etc.
Sinus Headache Treatment:
- On Guard
Apply topically to sinus areas and cup and inhale or diffuse.
To address infection and symptoms (medium):
· 2 drops Lavender
· 2 drops Melaleuca
· 2 drops Rosemary
Apply topically with a cotton swab inside the nostrils or mix the above with a cup of warm water and, using a Neti pot (nasal irrigation device available at most drug stores) irrigate the nasal passages.
To address infection and symptoms (heavy duty):
· 1-4 drops Eucalyptus (1 sufficient for most, 4 is very strong)
· 2 drops Rosemary
· 2 drops Frankincense
· 1-2 teaspoons sea salt
Mix the above with 2 cups of warm water and, using a Neti pot (nasal irrigation device available at most drug stores) irrigate 2 times per day (or more).
For added help:
· 4 drops Frankincense
· 4 drops On Guard
· 4 drops Oregano
Add the above to a capsule and take 3 times per day.
Repeat daily as needed.
To address symptoms:
· Use Breathe with cup and inhale or diffuse.
· Or use Lavender, Lemon, Peppermint
For Sinus headaches caused by Allergies:
Changing hormone levels during menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause may trigger headaches. This may also include hormone changes with medications such as birth control pills.
Here is a link to a Hormone Balancing Webinar and article about how to manage your hormone levels with doTERRA products.
Any of the above headache treatments can be used on Hormonal headaches depending on the location and severity of the pain. However, addressing the source of your hormonal headache will be key to headache prevention.
- Always check the proper use for oils during pregnancy and with children.
- Different bodies and conditions will respond differently to oils. Sometimes it is necessary to rotate or try different oils.
- PEPPERMINT oil is very stimulating, so do not use for headaches in the evening or at night. Instead try LAVENDER and ROMAN CHAMOMILE.