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What your headache is telling you.

Headaches are a very common ailment, and something we have probably all experienced at some point in time. Not all headaches are the same though. Depending on the character of the pain from the headache and where you feel it, will signify different causes and different ways you can work to prevent them.

The "stress headache" will typically feel like a throbbing pain on one side of the head at the temple. In Chinese Medicine the liver is the organ that keeps things moving freely through your body. Emotional stress causes stagnation or tension in your body, resulting in symptoms such as headaches. Other signs your body is being affected by stress may include irritability, depression, mood swings, frequent sighing, insomnia, ringing in your ears, high blood pressure, & PMS. 

Manage stress in the ways that work best for you...exercise, meditation, yoga.

Add in spices to your diet like basil, cardamom, chives, cloves, and turmeric.

Sour is the flavor of the liver, try increasing citrus, fermented, or pickled foods (think pickles, olives, sauerkraut, kombucha, miso, tamari, vinegar).

The point LI 4 is found at the midpoint of the forefinger bone. It will often feel sensitive. Putting pressure on this point will help relieve a headache caused by stress.

If you are exhausted and overworked you may develop a dull, lingering headache that feels better with pressure and rest. This headache is often felt throughout the head or along the forehead. The root of this headache in Chinese Medicine would be not enough Qi, or energy. This is related to the Spleen (in Chinese Medicine) which is connected to the digestive, immune, and circulatory systems.  

We create new energy from the food we put in our body. Besides a dull headache, there are other signs that the spleen is not doing a good job absorbing nutrients from food. This organ needs a boost if there are symptoms such as ongoing fatigue, bloating, digestive issues, bruising easily, worry with repetitive thinking.

Headaches that come on quickly and feel like a fixed, boring pain can sometimes come from stimulus outside our body, like catching a chill or changes is weather pressure. These headaches show up in different areas of the head and can be treated with acupuncture based on their location and which meridians they are associated with. 

Bundle up for the cold and cover your neck with a scarf.

Using essential oils for headache relief:

Make a blend with 5 drops each of frankincense, lavender, and peppermint. Mix into 10 oz of a carrier oil. Apply to your temples, forehead, and back of your neck. 

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