Tension Headache Remedies

Tension headaches affect almost 80% of the adult population. Social and work activity in those who suffer from them are reduced by up to 60%.
Tension Headache Remedies

Last update: 09 October, 2021

Surely you have suffered from a so-called tension headache, which affects both sides of the head, and not just one, as often happens with migraine headaches. To this constant stabbing pain we can add a stiffness in the neck and scalp, a discomfort that appears especially in the middle of the day and which gains strength during the afternoon.

It’s a type of headache that the vast majority of the population suffers from, but if it lasts for several days a week and for three months in a row, we would be talking about a chronic condition that would require a specific type of treatment.

When suffering from tension headaches, it’s common for us to resort to some sort of analgesic. However, many of us would like to avoid taking these if we can. Because of this, we’d like to offer you some natural remedies. As these headaches are caused by situations of anxiety and stress, we can control them by taking into account their triggers.

Causes of tension headache

Many factors cause these annoying headaches, but these could be the root causes:

  • Situations of stress and anxiety
  • Staying for a long time in an uncomfortable and incorrect position for the axis of the body and the head, where the muscles and nerves are overloaded
  • Having your eyes fixed on something for a long time, or even having vision problems and using an incorrect prescription on your glasses or lenses
  • A poor diet with vitamin and mineral deficiencies (magnesium, vitamin B etc.)

Types of tension headaches

According to the scientific literature, we have two types of tension headache:

  • Type I: This is the one that lasts for several months, having a higher incidence in the morning. It then stops and appears again in the afternoon. The pain is centered on both sides and in the occipital area.
  • Type II: This is the most common type, and it’s characteriztypeed by diffuse pain and an annoying sensation of pressure. It lasts between one and three days. Medication doesn’t usually relieve it.

Differences between migraines and tension headaches

Tension headaches have a more generalized pain with pressure in the temples, behind the head, and also in the neck. Sometimes it lasts for hours, or just over half an hour, stays for two or three days, and then disappears.

For its part, migraines have very localized pain, sometimes only occurring on one side of the head. The light bothers you, and you may feel nausea and dizziness, something that doesn’t occur with tension headaches, for example, which can sometimes disappear with a simple neck massage.

Tension headache remedies

Vitamin B

According to multiple studies, vitamin B could help us relieve headaches. It’s advisable to consult with the doctor if it would be possible to add an extra supply of vitamins through the tablets that are usually sold in natural stores.

If the doctor gives their approval, then you can take a 250-milligram capsule a day for two weeks to recover.

You can also find vitamin B in cow liver, oily fish, eggs, and green leafy plants.

Lavender

Lavender is perfect for stress and headache relief. You can take it as an infusion; taken in the morning and in the middle of the afternoon it can solve the tension headache. You can also put a few drops of lavender essential oil in boiling water and inhale the steam, as an aromatherapy technique.

Sagebrush

According to some studies, this plant has substances that help regulate neurotransmitters in the brain, and normalize blood flow in it. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it a perfect choice to have as an infusion. Take two of these flowers, put them to boil in water, and drink them in the middle of the afternoon.

Magnesium

Magnesium is effective in preventing and relieving headaches and migraines: it’s a mineral that relaxes muscles and relieves stress, calming nerves and headaches. It’s found in brown rice, cocoa powder, pumpkin seeds, dried basil, Brazil nuts, and other items.

Mint

A perfect remedy to treat headaches. If we take two infusions a day: morning and afternoon, we will notice its beneficial effects. Two teaspoons of dried mint are stirred into a cup of very hot water. Then let it rest for a few minutes and drink it little by little.

Other tips

  • Use a good pillow in bed; the position of our neck and head is very important.
  • Take care of your posture when reading, working, or doing other activities.
  • Get in the habit of stretching your neck, back, and shoulders from time to time to avoid overloading.
  • Check your vision – in tension headaches, sometimes the discomfort is related to an untreated vision problem.
  • Manage your stressful situations, take time for yourself, rest, and set priorities.

There are many types of headaches, and all of them are very annoying and can prevent us from carrying out our day-to-day lives well and performing certain activities. We’ve brought you some easy tips and remedies to help you get some relief from tension headache pain.

However, and as we always advise you to do, the first thing you should do is see your doctor if these problems are very persistent.

It might interest you...
The Connection Between Hormones and Headaches
Step To Health
Read it in Step To Health
The Connection Between Hormones and Headaches

Headaches are a common symptom of various conditions and hormonal imbalances are one of the causes, here's their relationship with hormones.



  • Godia, E. C. (2011). Cefalea tensional. Medicine. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0304-5412(11)70002-6
  • Rojo, E. (2012). Cefalea tensional y migraña. Actualizaciones.
  • IMSS. (2009). Cefalea tensional y Migraña en el adulto. Guía de Referencia Rápida.