Headache is a common condition that can have many causes such as stress, tension, fatigue, poor diet or even more serious health issues. Over-the-counter medications are usually used for pain relief. However, they can cause unwanted side effects. Fortunately, there are herbal remedies that can be used as natural alternatives for headache relief. In this article, discover the essential plants to fight headaches effectively, naturally and quickly.
We will also develop their properties and their use so that you can choose the method that suits you best to relieve your headaches!
Things to know before using plants for headaches…
Whether you opt for herbs or essential oils, remember that grandmother’s natural remedies are very powerful. As such, they may have contraindications and may not be suitable for certain audiences, in particular pregnant and breastfeeding women or young children. So be sure to find out about these contraindications for safe use of these natural solutions. Moreover, respect the indicated dosages. Finally, if in doubt or if the headaches persist, do not hesitate to consult a doctor or go to a pharmacy for advice.
The essential plants against headache
1) Mint: the queen of plants against headaches
Spearmint essential oil (Mentha x piperita) is the best-known natural remedy for headache pain. Moreover, even the WHO recognizes its effectiveness and a clinical study had shown that its use (with a concentration of 10% in ethanol) relieved headaches as well as 1,000 mg of acetaminophen (Tylenol® ). This is probably due to its natural anesthetic and analgesic properties. In case of tension headache, you can therefore dilute 2 to 3 drops in a little vegetable oil of your choice to massage the painful areas (neck, temples or forehead) carefully avoiding the eyes.
2) Feverfew, very effective in case of migraine
Not to be confused with Roman chamomile or German chamomile which have other properties in herbal medicine, feverfew works just as well. for the prevention and treatment of migraines. It also and above all makes it possible to work for the decreased frequency and intensity of seizures painful. It has soothing and analgesic properties, in particular thanks to its richness in parthenolide (an active agent present in the leaves. You can consume it in powder, in capsules of dried or freeze-dried leaves, or even chew 125 mg to 250 mg of dried leaves daily.
3) Willow bark among the best herbs for headaches
It is no coincidence that willow bark is often nicknamed “natural aspirin”. In addition to not being suitable for people allergic to aspirin, this plant indeed contains salicin that our body then transforms into salicylic acid, the active ingredient of this drug. This gives him a febrifuge effect (to prevent and eliminate fever) and analgesic (Pain killer). To calm the headache, you can infuse 2 to 3 g of white willow bark for 5 minutes in 150 to 250 ml of water. You can consume up to 4 cups a day. Alternatively, you can take 60 mg of standardized salicin extract 1 to 4 times a day.
4) Meadowsweet, another vegetable aspirin
Another plant that is similar to aspirin and prohibited in case of allergy to this drug. It is indeed thanks to the salicylate derivatives (but also to the flavonoids!) in its beautiful white flowers that the meadowsweet displays notorious anti-inflammatory, febrifuge and analgesic properties. It thus stands out as a safe bet to reduce headaches effectively. Moreover, it has a notable advantage that sets it apart from aspirin: gentle on the stomach, it does not harm the gastric mucosa. To use, steep 1-2 tablespoons of dried flowers in 250ml of simmering water, strain, then sip up to three cups a day.
5) True lavender to the rescue
In addition to its pleasant smell reminiscent of Provence, true lavender is above all considered a universal panacea. Infinitely anti-inflammatory and painkiller, the essential oil of lavender is not to be outdone and can treat many ailments. Not content with calming muscle pain, fighting insomnia, reducing anxiety, fighting gastric disorders or even helping to cope with high blood pressure, it also does well when it comes to is to tackle the problems of headaches and migraines. To do this, simply dilute 1 to 2 drops in vegetable oil and massage the temples and/or forehead. You can also carry out an inhalation with lavender oil to calm your headaches.
6) Rosemary among the surprise plants against headaches
With rosemary, you will quickly forget the analgesics. This plant is indeed a excellent anti-inflammatory which works particularly well on cold-related migraines. You can use it both in inhalation (a handful of dried rosemary in 1L of water) and in herbal tea (2 g infused for 10 minutes in 150 ml of simmering water), and this, up to three cups per day. in case of pain. Finally, you can rub 1 to 2 drops of its essential oil on your temples, neck or forehead, avoiding contact with your eyes.
7) Butterbur, THE plant against migraines
Unprocessed, this plant contains pyrrolizidine alkaloids, substances toxic to some of our organs. On the other hand, you can use standardized extracts of butterbur rhizome at the same time in the prevention and treatment of migraine attacks. Taken as a cure, this plant makes it possible to significantly reduce the frequency of migraines. During the meal, twice a day, you can take between 50 mg and 75 mg of butterbur extract. Continue the treatment for 4 to 6 months to reduce your suffering.
8) Lemon balm to overcome headaches
Lemon balm (or lemon balm) is a reliable plant for reducing the pain caused by a headache or migraine. In addition to acting as a good painkillershe also has a antiviral effect which helps fight viral infections that can cause said headaches. Generally, it is used in herbal tea by infusing 1.5 g to 4.5 g of dried lemon balm in 150 ml of simmering water. It is possible to consume up to three cups a day.
9) Eucalyptus for tension headaches
You would be wrong to confine this plant with its fresh and intense fragrance only to treat respiratory ailments or soothe rheumatic pains. Lemon eucalyptus essential oil is packed with eucalyptol, a analgesic and anti-inflammatory substance effective against mild and not very intense headaches. To do this, however, remember to start by diluting it in a little vegetable oil before rubbing it on your forehead and temples while carefully avoiding contact with your eyes.
10) Let’s finish this list of plants against headache with ginkgo biloba
In the leaves of ginkgo biloba, there are many beneficial substances (flavonoids, quercetin, ginkgolides and bilobalides) which give it antioxidant, neuroprotective and vasodilator properties. Used in the form of an extract, it is recognized by the WHO for the treatment of dementia, concentration disorders, tinnitus, but also vascular headaches. It’s actually by promoting blood circulation that it will then help relieve pain.
To do this, start with a low dose (60 mg per day) to avoid digestive disturbances, restlessness and other side effects that may occur in patients who are not accustomed to this herb. It is then possible to gradually increase. For an effective effect, it is advisable to take between 120 to 240 mg of standardized extract divided into 2 or 3 doses during the day.