What do you do when you have a headache? You probably reach out for painkillers right? But, the headache doesn't leave you, it comes back! So, the next time when your head is throbbing, reach out for a hot cuppa. In this article, we will be talking about the herbal teas to relieve headaches.
Headaches are of many types: tension headaches, cluster headaches, sinus headaches, migraine, hormone headaches, caffeine headaches, exertion headaches, hypertension headaches, rebound headaches, and post-traumatic headaches.
The symptoms of a headache range from sensitivity to light, nausea, vomiting, sound and smell, and constipation. Luckily, there is a remedy right in your kitchen which is a hot cup of herbal tea.
Why Tea Has The Ability To Cure Headaches
Experts say that tea is a very good way of soothing tense, nervous headaches and research reveals that caffeine present in tea can bring relief from aches and pains instantly just like painkillers .
A scientific study was done on 1501 participants. Half of the participants were give ibuprofen, a painkiller either alone or in combination with caffeine. The other participants got a caffeine or a placebo pill. The results indicated that caffeine enhanced the effectiveness of painkillers  .
Here is a list of herbal teas that you can drink for soothing your headaches.
1. Green Tea
It's rich in polyphenols, antioxidants and possesses analgesic properties. These antioxidants help in reducing inflammation and the rich caffeine content in green tea, causes the constriction of blood vessels thereby lowering the headache. Also, the caffeine plays a key role in the effectiveness of analgesics and combats a headache .
How to make: Brew green tea with some amount of honey and drink it when it is warm to reduce the headache.
2. Ginger Tea
Ginger tea is considered an effective herbal tea for headaches and migraines. A study found ginger root to be effective as sumatriptan, a common medication to reduce migraine pain  .
How to make: Add 1 tablespoon of grated ginger into 3 cups of boiling water. Add lemon and simmer for 10 minutes. Drink it warm.
Note: If you are having a gallbladder condition or taking blood thinners, speak to your doctor first before having ginger tea.
3. Cinnamon Tea
Cinnamon has the potent ability to ease muscle tension and provide relief from headaches due to its warming properties. It's rich in manganese, fibre, iron and calcium which make it a perfect remedy to cure headaches.
How to make: Add 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon to a cup of boiling water. Let it steep for 10 minutes and enjoy the hot drink.
4. Chamomile Tea
The chamomile flowers contain several phenolic compounds, mainly the flavonoids apigenin, luteolin, glucosides, quercetin and patuletin. All of these has anti-inflammatory properties which is the reason chamomile tea is a great pain reliever for migraine headaches and tension headaches.
How to make: Add 3-4 tablespoons of chamomile into your tea cup. Pour boiling water over it. Let it steep for 5 minutes and drink it.
Note: If you are allergic to flowers, consuming chamomile could cause an allergic reaction. If you are on blood thinners, consult your doctor first.
5. Peppermint Tea
Peppermint has a calming effect on the body which can bring relief from a headache, anxiety-related disorders and stomach problems. It contains menthol and methyl salicylate, both of which have antispasmodic effects. In addition, the application of peppermint oil on the forehead can help ease tension headache  .
How to make: Crush 7-10 peppermint leaves and put them into your teacup. Add boiling water over it and allow it to steep for 10 minutes. Remove the leaves and add honey. Enjoy the drink!
6. Clove Tea
Clove is another valuable spice that has been used for centuries to treat various types of pain, including headaches. It is because of the antinociceptive properties of clove which block or lower the pain .
How to make: Add a teaspoon of ground cloves in a cup of boiling water. Allow it to steep for 10 minutes and enjoy the drink.
Note: If you are on blood thinners, talk to your doctor first before consuming clove tea.
7. Lemon Balm Tea
Lemon balm is a calming herb and it's known for its pain-relieving and mild sedative properties. If your headache is due to stress, the relaxing properties of lemon balm can unwind, de-stress and relax your muscles. Most often herbalists recommend lemon balm tea for migraine sufferers  .
How to make: Heat water and add the chopped lemon balm leaves. Mix it in the water and allow it to steep for 10 minutes. Strain and add honey to it.
8. Feverfew Tea
Since ancient times, the herb feverfew has been used for medicinal purposes. According to a study, the feverfew herb has been effectively used in the treatment of migraine and headache  .
How to make: Pour 1 cup of boiling water over dried feverfew leaves, steep for 30 minutes or so and drink it.
Note: Feverfew tea might cause mouth irritation, so ensure that you use more water and fewer leaves.
9. Willowbark Tea
The bark of the willow tree has healing properties which is why it is used as a treatment for fever, and brings relief from headache and joint pain. Willow bark contains an active ingredient called salicin, which is similar to the pain-relieving medication aspirin . That's why willow bark is called the nature's aspirin.
How to make: Take 4 tablespoons of dried flakes of willow bark and add in a cup of boiling water. Simmer for 6 minutes and strain it.
Note: The willow bark tree might irritate your stomach lining. Consult a doctor before having it.
10. Meadowsweet Tea
Meadowsweet is a plant used for treating colds, upset stomach, bronchitis, heartburn, peptic ulcer, and joint disorders. It also helps to relieve headaches due to the compound salicin present in it. Meadowsweet also contains tannins which lowers inflammation and decreases phlegm mucous.
How to make: In a cup of boiled water, steep 1-2 teaspoons of dried meadowsweet flowers for 10 minutes. Strain it, add a dash of honey and drink it.
11. Wintergreen Tea
Wintergreen is another shrub used for treating aches and pains. It contains an aspirin-like chemical called methyl salicylate which can help alleviate the headaches, joint pain, muscle cramps and more  .
How to make: Pour boiling water in a cup and add half a teaspoon of dried wintergreen leaves. Let it steep for 3 minutes and strain it.
12. Tulsi Tea
Tulsi is an aromatic perennial shrub which has been used in Ayurveda for medicinal purposes  . The freshly brewed tea made from tulsi is beneficial in treating headache, migraine and other stress-related headaches. Tulsi contains beneficial antioxidants that help to de-stress and relax your mind.
How to make: In a cup of boiling water, add shredded tulsi leaves, ginger, cardamom powder. Boil it for 10 minutes and strain it. Add honey and lemon juice for taste.
Having painkillers every time you get a headache can harm you in the long run Instead of going for medications, switch to herbal teas for faster and better relief. These soothing teas are enough to stop these headaches from developing.
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