Tension headaches are not a joke. They are typically felt like a tight ring around the head. They may be caused by muscle tension in the neck and head and neck, stress, or bad posture.
A lot of people use pain medication such as acetaminophen or NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications) to ease symptoms. However, overuse of these medications without seeking medical advice could cause harmful side effects.
As an acupuncturist who has 10 years of experience in clinical practice I’ve had thousands patients seek me out for assistance in easing tension headaches.
Acupuncture treatment involves pressure that is applied to certain areas in the body, which relaxes muscles as well as increase circulation. Here are some strategies I have used to ease headaches and migraines without needles!
1. By pressing at the bottom of your skull as well as your neck
These acupuncture points can be found at the bone base of the skull in the right and left sides. The pressure applied to these points isn’t just beneficial to ease headaches as well as for neck tension and sinus congestion.
- Hold your hands tightly on top of your head with your thumbs facing downwards.
- Place your hands in a position where each thumb presses against the ditch at the bottom of the technique (one to the left and one to the right).
- Apply gentle pressure, then rub the area in small circular movements. You might feel some discomfort or tension on this area, which is normal.
- Continue this process until you begin feeling some relief.
2. By pressing on the area between the index finger and thumb
I refer to it as”the “painkiller button” because it eases headaches and also gives an “it feels so good” sensation. (If you’re pregnant, you should avoid this method since it may cause over stimulation.)
- Your palm should be turned down and locate the web that runs between the thumb and index finger.
- Make sure to press down on this point using your thumb on the opposite hand.
- When you press your finger, gently press it toward the bone of your index finger. You can also pinch it like you’re pulling the card from an empty slot.
- Keep the pressure at moderate to moderate pressure for 60 seconds , then alter the intensity of the pressure depending on the needs.
- Repeat 2 or 3 times for each hand.
Other methods of easing tension headaches
A walk outside at a steady speed for about 30 mins could reduce stress and give fresh air, which can help relieve tension headaches.
If you are unable to get away from your desk take short breaks every 30-60 minutes. Take a walk or stretch out for five or 10 minutes in order to stimulate greater blood flow to your brain and body.
Drinking water may also assist in easing body and head discomforts. The cause of fatigue is usually dehydration research has found that those who suffer from headaches and migraines frequently do not drink enough fluids. I like having my water warm and accompanied by slices of lemon or ginger.
Eileen Li is a licensed Acupuncturist, Chinese medicine doctor and physical therapist. She completed her doctorate from Simmons University. She then was employed in the physical rehabilitation field , which specialized in chronic pain research in pediatrics and geriatrics schools, inpatient psychiatry and inpatient. Her work regarding chronic pain is published in a variety of journals. Keep up with Eileen via TikTok along with Instagram.
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