If you find that your pain pills aren’t doing the trick, consider one of these natural ways to fight off your headache.
In one Indian study of 72 migraineurs, researchers found that sufferers who performed routines that included yoga and who did breathing exercises had significantly fewer — and less painful — migraines.
Patients who received up to 12 acupuncture treatments in three months needed less pain medication, had 22 fewer head-pain days per year, and went to the doctor 25% less often, a multicenter study of 410 headache sufferers reported.
In Taiwanese research comparing a month of acupressure treatments with muscle-relaxing drugs, the hands-on therapy significantly beat the pills at relieving chronic headaches. To try it yourself: Place your thumbs on the two points on either side of your vertebrae at the nape of your neck (just below your skull). Gently knead for one to two minutes.
A study of 245 migraine sufferers, led by a researcher from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, found 68% of those who took 75 milligrams of a butterbur product twice a day cut their migraines by at least half. The plant has anti-inflammatory compounds, which may be why it quells head pain. But it also contains toxic chemicals called pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs), so be sure to use only a PA-free product. In the study, patients took Petadolex.