Tension Headache (cont.)

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Are home remedies effective for tension headache?

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Sometimes headaches can be triggered by mild dehydration or lack of food; if so, then drinking some non-caffeinated fluids or eating something may help. People who eat flaxseed regularly, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, may experience a decrease in headaches. This is thought to be related to the anti-inflammatory properties of the omega-3 fatty acids. Additionally, inhaling the scent of peppermint oil or lavender oil may help decrease headache pain (lavender oil should not be consumed orally). Scalp massage is easily done and may provide significant relief; concentrating efforts over the temporal regions or the occipital area (the back of the scalp) may lead to the best response.

Can tension headaches be prevented?

Often, the best defense is a good offense; a similar strategy will work when trying to prevent tension headache. Identification of triggers of headache with subsequent efforts to avoid or modify those triggers can be very successful to decrease or even eliminate tension headache. Some people find that scheduled exercise and eating on a regular basis is beneficial. Learning and practicing relaxation techniques, including deep breathing exercises, directed relaxation of specific muscles, or meditation, can also be very effective.

If headaches are occurring regularly or have changed in severity or frequency; or if the patient experiences a headache which is very different from his or her usual headaches, the patient should see their doctor.

Medically reviewed by Jon Glass, MD; American board of Psychiatry and Neurology


Blanda, Michelle, et al. "Tension Headache." Medscape. 17 May 2012.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/10/2014

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Tension Headache - Symptoms Question: What symptoms did you experience with a tension headache?
Tension Headache - Treatment Question: Which tension headache treatment worked for you?
Tension Headache - Causes Question: What causes your tension headaches? Do you know your triggers?
Tension Headache - Remedies Question: Are home remedies effective for your tension headaches?