Effective Herbs for the Management and Treatment of Migraine
Migraine is a severe kind of headache that occurs frequently. It is a severe form of headache that comes with throbbing and excruciating pain, such that you find it difficult to engage yourself in your usual daily activities. The symptoms associated with migraine can be frustrating and debilitating. A normal headache is different from a migraine. Migraine episodes last for days. It affects a person’s daily routine and paralyzes their daily plans. There are different kinds and stages of migraine. The symptoms of migraine range from severe to mild. Some people experience migraine episodes more than twice a week, while others experience it more frequently.
Episodes of migraine depend on age and gender. The research found that 19% of females suffered from migraines in the space of three months, while 9% of males suffered from migraines in the same space of time. Migraine is also known to occur more among people aged 18 – 44. Most people who experience migraines try to get medical attention, while others resort to natural therapies like relaxation and herbs. The major focus of this article is the herbal remedies for the management and treatment of migraines.
There are different types of migraine, and each comes with its unique symptoms and degree of severity. The following are types of migraine;
- Menstrual migraine: Here, a severe headache is usually attached to a woman’s monthly cycle.
- Silent migraine: Here, symptoms can occur without a headache.
- Vestibular migraine: Here, you lose balance and experience severe symptoms like nausea, fatigue, and fainting.
- Abdominal migraine: This kind of migraine causes vomiting and stomach pain.
- Hemiplegic migraine: This migraine causes a mini paralysis. Here, one part of your body becomes too weak and numb. It comes with dizziness and fatigue.
- Ophthalmic migraine: It causes total or partial loss of vision in one eye.
- Status migrainosus: This kind of migraine is so severe and lasts for more than 72 hours on a stretch.
- Basilar migraine: This migraine is a rare kind. It affects the neurological function of the body, one of which is speech.
Causes and Risk Factors of Migraine
- Hormonal changes or imbalances in women. For example, menstruation and menopause.
- Drinks like alcohol, wine, and caffeinated drinks can cause migraines.
- Excess stress can lead to migraines.
- Sleep disruption or sleep disorders
- Physical factors like sexual activities and exercises
- Weather change
- Certain medications such as oral contraceptives
- Processed foods
- Skipping meals
- Food sweeteners and additives
- Age; migraine affects people of different ages but gets to the peak from age 30 and above.
- Sex; women have a greater chance of suffering from migraine than men
- Family history; people who have migraines running through their family history are more likely to suffer migraines in their lifetime.
- Emotional stress; factors like anxiety and depression can cause migraine.
- Environmental factors like blinking or too bright screens, loud songs, strong smells, and too bright colors.
Herbal Remedies for Migraine
Down the ages, long before chemical medications for migraines were introduced, people worldwide used herbs for the treatment and management of migraine and their symptoms. The majority of these herbs have survived the test of time and are still used today. The following are scientifically-backed herbs that are effective in managing migraine and their symptoms.
Feverfew is a popular herb among Greeks and has been used since time immemorial to treat many kinds of pains, swellings, and inflammations. People used it to treat pains such as headaches. This plant has proven today to be just as effective as it was in the ancient Greek ages. Europeans use feverfew to cure headaches, insect bites, and other forms of pain. Later research revealed that it can be used in the treatment of migraines, dizziness, common cold arthritis, and breathing problems. Dry the leaves flower and stem in the sun, boil them and drink the tea. The leaves can also be eaten raw. Whichever method works for you is best for you.
Do not take feverfew herbs if you are pregnant or on blood-thinning medication. Also, mild side effects can include bloating and nausea. Other side effects like joint pain and difficulty in sleeping can occur if the herb is discontinued.
It has an analgesic effect that helps the body stimulate its natural processes by relieving pains such as migraine pains as well as eliminating toxic compounds from the body. Add some basil leaves in boiling water, allow it to simmer a bit, then drink the mixture.
Catnip is a natural sedative that regulates sleep in migraine patients. It is one of the greatest herbal remedies for migraines and insomnia. Catnip also has anti-inflammatory characteristics that make it able to fight stress and anxiety. The flower of the catnip plant can be made into tea. The process is not difficult, just pour the flowers of the catnip plant into hot water and drink the mixture.
Fennel has both scientific and historic backings. It is known across cultures to be a great remedy for migraines and other forms of aches. Tea can be made from either the stalk or the leaves of the fennel plant.
As the name implies, butterbur‘s leaves are used to preserve butter during warm weather. Asides from this awesome function, it is known to be effective in treating migraine, asthma, allergies, cough, fever, and general body pain. Its root is boiled for up to an hour, and then drink from this process should be drunk regularly by people who are suffering from migraines.
Peppermint oil is used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. Asides from treating migraines and headaches, it manages migraine symptoms like nausea, spasm, toothache, and gastrointestinal problems. Extract oil from the leaves using a cold compress. Massage your head with the oil gently in circles, and try to catch some sleep afterward.
The extract from the bark of the willow tree has been one of the most effective herbal remedies for aches and migraines over the years. It used to be an ingredient in the production of aspirin. It is popularly known for its pain-relieving, fever-reducing, and anti-inflammatory functions. Its bark can be chewed raw for faster results. It is used by some people to treat osteoarthritis and lower back pains.
Ginger is traditionally and naturally a cooking spice as well as a medicinal herb. It is widely known to be a remedy for the relief of migraine symptoms like nausea, stomach pain, headaches, arthritis, and neurological problems. Ginger roots can be chewed raw, and it can be boiled to help people who cannot withstand chewing them raw.
Avoid ginger root if you are on a blood thinner medication.
Just like catnip, chamomile is a natural sedative that can alleviate migraine symptoms like lack of sleep and stress. Chamomile also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce muscle spasms. Make chamomile plant into a tea by adding the leaves to boiling water and leaving to boil for a few minutes, then consume the mixture. Or preferably, add honey to the mixture for a better taste.
Many cultures use coriander seeds as a food seasoning and healing agents likewise. It is known for its laudable effects in the treatment of allergies, migraine, diabetes, and certain other forms of aches. To get the most out of these seeds, people pour hot water over the seeds and inhale the steam for headache and sinus pressure relief. These seeds can also be chewed or prepared into tea.
Teaberry, which is also known as wintergreen in America, is an edible plant made from the teaberry tree gum. It contains anti-inflammatory properties and can be made into tea and oil extracts. It contains other properties that combat stress, migraine, stomach pain, vomiting, and fatigue. To experience its healing effect, boil the teaberry in hot water for 5 minutes, then drink the mixture.
In conclusion, migraines can be a frustrating illness that can render your daily activities useless. Its symptoms range from severe to mild, and the risk factors depend on gender and age. People who suffer from migraines opt for various medications, some of which are herbal remedies. These herbal therapies are easy to make and incorporate into diets. They have science and history, backing them up as proof of their effectiveness. However, these herbs, just like other chemical migraine medications, have side effects. This is why it is recommended to consult herbalists and health service providers before using these herbs to prevent complications.