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Essential oils surrounded by peppermint and herbs.

5 Essential Oils for Persistent Headaches

So you’ve got a headache, hey?

There’s nothing worse than a relentless migraine that prevents you from going about your day. The most common type of headache is the tension headache, which is the type that usually comes on when we are under stress, haven’t had enough sleep, are pushing ourselves too hard, or even when there is too much noise around us.

More frequently, with the new work-from-home culture that we live in, eye strain and lack of movement have contributed to the headaches people are getting on a day-to-day basis.

Headaches happen, so what do we do to get rid of them?

You may have using hot or cold compresses, going to massage or acupuncture practitioners, or even sleeping it off. Usually, our immediate reaction is to reach for a painkiller, but increasingly more people turn to alternative forms of treatment: essential oils.

Essential oils are not a cure-all, but they can be a great tool to help manage our symptoms, no matter the cause of your head-pounding predicament.

Using Essential Oils

Essential oils are used for many things - sometimes to burn in an oil burner to produce a relaxing aroma, sometimes mixed with a carrier oil and used in the bathtub (Note: You should always mix essential oils with a carrier oil, such as jojoba oil or olive oil if you are going to use it in the bath or on your skin).

They are highly concentrated liquids made to capture the essence of plants, flowers, and other natural things.

But how about using them for headaches?

Since essential oils can offer health benefits like stress reduction and improving circulation, they can be used to tackle some of the causes of our headaches. This is why people use these oils in tandem with other strategies to get their headaches under control.

When used properly, these aromatherapeutic treatments alleviate pain and promote greater feelings of well-being.

Read this next: How to Use Essential Oils in Your Daily Life

Best Essential Oils for Headaches/Migraines

So which essential oil is a headache tackler?

1. Clary Sage

Clary sage essential oil is extremely calming and soothing. As well as having a rather distinctive scent that has an oddly sedative effect, it is also a potent oil known for its antidepressant effects, anti-inflammatory effects, antibacterial effects, and stress relief.

Therefore, a few drops in an oil burner may help with headaches because it has a powerful calming effect. This may be especially helpful if the headache is stress-related.

Fun fact, this oil is sometimes used on horses to relieve tension due to muscular overexertion.

2. Lavender Oil

Lavender oil is one of the most popular oils for stress relief as it helps people sleep and is extremely relaxing. There are many who believe that lavender oil can relieve headaches and migraines that are triggered by stress.

A few drops in an oil burner can be especially relaxing before bed or if you are taking a nap due to your headache.

3. Rosemary Oil

Rosemary has a strong scent that is hard to miss. It is an effective treatment against headaches because of its anti-inflammatory factors and because it helps with insomnia.

Sometimes, people avoid rosemary because of its powerful aroma; the key is to use a slight hand when applying this oil. Not too much is necessary for its effects, as even a few drops can have a mighty impact.

If you are especially struggling with getting to sleep and your headache is preventing you from doing so, rosemary may be able to help.

4. Peppermint Oil

If you’ve ever asked a person with chronic headaches what they use for their pain, the answer is most often peppermint oil.

This is a trendy choice, not just because of its accessibility and smell, but because of how it feels when applied. Peppermint’s active ingredient is menthol, and when applied to the temples and forehead, it tingles and cools us.

It has been used in alternative medicine for thousands of years and has been sworn by many to be the most effective way of treating migraines that doesn’t come in a pill bottle.

As an oil, it is best used in an oil burner or mixed with a carrier oil and applied gently to the skin, or a few drops can also be poured onto a pillow for the aromatherapy effect.

Just be careful not to get this oil too close to your eyes! Peppermint’s powerful scent packs a punch.

5. Ylang Ylang

Ylang ylang has a rather sweet scent that is appealing to the nostrils. It also has the ability to uplift moods while relaxing and calming you at the same time.

Therefore, it can have the double effect of improving your mental state while at the same time helping to combat stress.

Ylang ylang is such a pleasant scent that it can be used at any time of the day. When used in an oil burner and its scent allowed to waft around the room, you will likely notice the effects almost immediately.

Breathe Your Way to Pain Relief

The benefits of essential oils are endless and, when it comes to headaches, it prevents us from overdoing it with over-the-counter pill options.

Sometimes, natural treatments can work wonders for us; but we have to give them a try first.

If you are new to essential oils, it may take some time to figure out which ones work best. The five listed in this article are specific to helping with headaches.

Remember, it is always important to buy your essential oils from a reputable brand as not all countries regulate essential oils. This means that if you do not do your research, you could end up with an improperly made essential oil that does more harm than good. Similarly, if you have existing health conditions, it is best to speak with a doctor before using them.

Have you tried any of these essential oils before? How well do they work for you?

Continue your aromatherapy journey: 8 Essential Oils Perfect for Anxiety

Sarah Brownlee

Sarah Brownlee

Having worked as a teacher, a bartender, and even a private investigator, writing was something Sarah Brownlee just fell into, even though it had been her passion since she was a little girl. To date, she has written and published 3 Children and Young Adult fiction novels, ghostwritten for others, and... Read More

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