Many people turn to pain killers like acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) to relieve their headaches. However, these over the counter medicines simply suppress the symptoms, only to have the headache surface again. Or, this can also display as what is sometimes referred to as a ‘rebound headache‘.
We can address this by a preventative model such as Ayurveda. There are many types of headaches;
Based on the science of Ayurveda, it is important to first assess which dosha is involved in order to treat the root cause.
They are derived from the five elements. Also known as mind-body types, the doshas express unique blends of physical, emotional, and mental characteristics. In Ayurveda, health is defined as the dynamic state of balance between mind, body, and environment.
The three (3) doshas are;
Now, whether you believe or relate to the theory of doshas, or not – does not change that when we discover the root of a problem the remedy is far more effective. For example, if you have a migraine chances are, taking a Tylenol or Advil will mask the symptoms but won’t actually treat the migraine.
Sure, they are meant to alleviate pain as a symptom, not pain as a root cause. So using the Ayuervda model, let’s have a closer look at sinus and headache causes, and what some suggested remedies might be once identifying the root.
Vata types of tension headaches can be caused from excess stress, nervous exhaustion and insomnia. The dry quality of vata can create dehydration in the body leading to constipation and stiff muscles in the neck, shoulder and back. This, can trigger headache symptoms.
A suggested remedy is to relieve systemic dryness by drinking lots of warm water and incorporating more ghee into the diet. If symptoms like constipation are severe, toxins will ferment in the colon and then their gases rise to the head, creating pressure.
Try a few drops of sesame oil in the nostrils and inhale deeply.
Vata headaches require deep rest and relaxation.
Migraines are most often associated with aggravated Pitta dosha. Some symptoms are;
Causes of pitta migraines (or headaches) are heat and sun exposure, hypoglycemia due to hunger, and hormonal/estrogen fluctuations.
Remedy is to cool down pitta. Massaging coconut oil on the head and scalp is very soothing (not to mention good for you!) Herbs such as Shatavari and aloe vera gel maintain female hormone balance.
Eating frequent, smaller meals prevents hypoglycemia, and in the case of an acute migraine, snacking on something sweet like fruit or a date can help regulate low blood sugar.
Kapha headaches are most commonly due to nasal congestion. Thus, creating lots of pressure in the sinus cavities. It leaves a dull, achy feeling in the face and head. These particular headaches can also be aggravated by allergy season.
There is usually an excess in toxins in the form of mucus, which needs to be cleared from the system. So, that breathing can return to normal. Using a neti pot with salts will help open the sinus channels.
Drinking hot ginger tea and taking in pungent spices like black pepper, cinnamon and cloves reduce mucus congestion. Inhaling Eucalyptus steam provides great relief for kapha congestion headaches. This may also be found to be beneficial by defusing Eucalyptus by way of essential oils.
For all types of headaches, daily meditation along with deep abdominal breathing is an excellent way to relieve stress and emotional tension. This is almost always the root cause of disease in the body. Essential oils such a lavender or sandalwood can also help to calm mental activity.
Most of all, you can try to avoid having milk, sugar, coffee, white flour, fried or oily products made of gram flour, refined fast food, carbonated drinks like pop, bread, meat, liquor, cigarettes, and toffee.
Improvement in diet regime is the permanent treatment of the root causes of a headache and sinus trouble.
Finally, SOUPS! (Ki’s Kitchen makes some exceptionally delicious ones) are traditional dietary foods for common cold and sinusitis. The warm broth of a vegetable or chicken soup warms the blood and entire body. There’s good reason soup is one of the first foods we recommend when someone is feeling sick with a cold or flu.
Furthermore, Thank you so much for visiting! I hope you have found some valuable information, if so, I’d love to hear about it! Please feel free to share this post with anyone who might benefit, and comments are always welcome!
I look forward to connecting with you next time!
From our kitchen to yours,
Love + Peace