5 Ways to Get Rid of a Headache Without Going Deaf

Say What!? 12

pillsConsidering the amount of ibuprofen I consume on a regular basis combined with the number of times I find myself saying "What?!" per day, my initial reaction to news of a study linking women's use of pain relievers such as the aforementioned ibuprofen to long-term hearing loss was one of, let's say, alarm. Especially considering that this latest research, which also implicates acetaminophen, seems to think that "twice-a-week" is a regular basis. I don't know about you, but in my life the urge to reach for painkillers occurs more like twice-an-hour. And I really do wonder if I'm going deaf sometimes, though it's possible I'm just developing "selective hearing," that classic physical manifestation of mommy burnout ("MOM! MOMMOMOMOM!!!" "Oh, sorry sweetie, I didn't hear you.").

Of course, I'm always a bit skeptical of "studies" like this one which compare existing data (as opposed to a clinical trial), so I'm not planning on tossing out my ibuprofen altogether. But maybe it's worth looking into other pain relief options. You know, ones that won't have me shopping for a hearing aid before I'm a grandma. So here are 5 all-natural alternatives to get rid of your headaches, or whatever type of ache you happen to be having:

More from The Stir: 3 Foods to Make Your Headache Disappear

1. Hand reflexology. This method is supposed to work wonders on cluster and migraine headaches, and you can master the technique yourself to use anytime. To really learn about reflexology, try downloading a chart, but this is basically what you need to do for a headache: Use the thumb and on opposite hand begin working the tips of your thumb and fingers (where the head, brain and sinus reflexes are located). 

2. Capsaican. An active component of chile pepper, capsaican creams used topically are super-effective at relieving arthritis pain, but apparently a little capsaican cream inside the nostrils is just as useful in making headaches go away.

3. Kill the lights. Docs recommened resting, sitting, or lying "quietly in a low-lit room" to vanquish headaches, and as a former migraine sufferer, I can tell you this really works ... BUT you hafta nip that sucker in the bud, or else you'll just be in a low-lit room, moaning in pain.

4. SAM-e. Derived from a naturally occurring amino acid, SAM-e reduces inflammation and is thought to boost the brain's happy chemicals, serotonin and dopamine.

5. Caffeine. It's true! Except, not really on its own -- but caffeine added to pain relief meds can help those meds work better (faster, too).

Have you tried any of all-natural pain relief alternatives?


Image via e-Magine Art/Flickr

alternative medicine, general health, natural health


To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

nonmember avatar Mike M

Energy healing also works for reducing headaches. (I personally have experienced this after asking my spirit guide to do it for me by using energy from my own hand while it's placed on my head. Also, it probably helps if you're genuinely interested in it and perhaps also interested in learning more about other subjects related to spirituality.) But for the average person meditation (#3 on your list is along the lines of this) is perhaps more likely to produce the results you're looking for and is easily accessible (just relax and imagine that healing energy [white light] is filling your brain [the thought doesn't need to be too specific as your spirit guide knows what to do while you have the intent of healing yourself spiritually]).

iLiss iLiss

It's not necessarily a pain relief alternative, but you'd be surprised how often just drinking a glass or two of water helps to make a headache go away.

Pinkmani Pinkmani

Lately, I've been getting migraine's after excercise. It could be something like hiking a mountain, kickboxing, Pilates, or a 20 minute walk.

Zamaria Zamaria

I use peppermint a lot for headaches. I either smell the oil or drink some peppermint tea. It's very helpful if you catch it right away. But sometimes I just have to take something. I try to stick to aspirin but occasionally I'll use Advil or excedrine. And I go to a chiropractor who does cranial manipulation and let me tell you that is the best thing EVER! Really helped reduce the frequency of my headaches. I was taking about 6 excedrine tension or excedrine migraine every day for a long time, and that didn't even get rid of the headaches, just dulled them. Now I usually only get one a week!

Zamaria Zamaria

Also, if you get frequent headaches, try getting a new pillow. And do some neck stretching every few hours if you get tension headaches or sit at a desk most of the day. Prevention is best. Sometimes if I'm feeling a little tense at bedtime I'll take an aspirin before bed so I don't wake up with a headache. And I use peppermint oil in my vaporizer and that helps.

Elise48 Elise48

Orgasms can help quite a bit, too.

nonmember avatar Megan Ermey

For two years I had a constant migraine, as in every single day. I started marking days that I didn't have pain and it was only two, maybe three days that I was pain free. No neurologist was able to give me anything than drugs that would lessen the pain, but make me loopy all day. That was when I went to a naturopath that recommend vitamin B2. I started taking 400mg (after talking to my primary and several other doctors), and voila, now my head hurts two or three times a month, rather than the other way around. I'm not sure how it works, but I have been on it for four months and it has been amazing.

paige... paige1268

yoga worked for me I was bedridden several days a month for years then I bought a yoga book now I have a headache about once a month

Carenann Carenann

I've suffered from migraines for many years. I've found that cutting out certain items from my diet really lessens the frequency of my headaches. I no longer eat ANY artificial sweeteners and really monitor my MSG intake. MSG occurs in lots more foods than just Chinese food, many foods with powdered seasonings contain it. It is also true, as someone else stated, that staying hydrated can help prevent headaches as can drinking water when you feel one coming on. I've been interested in trying accupuncture but fortunately, these steps I've taken to prevent migraines have greatly helped.

Amanda Krampota

I have had severe migranes for about a year. I was prescribed Topamax, Amerge, and Imitrex. The Topamax made me stupid, and the migrane meds were super expensive without insurance. I started taking a supplement called 5-HTP about 10 days ago, and since then have only had to take one migrane med. It might be all in my head but, whatever! I feel better!!!

1-10 of 12 comments 12 Last