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Herbs for Migraine

I have suffered from severe migraines for years. Only the triptan derivative drugs will make a dent in it but I don't like taking them and they are just too expensive for us to buy.

I recently began drinking feverfew tea when I get a migraine and it works very well! I am so pleased! I will never again buy drugs for headaches! I did some research into why it works so well. It is believed that by inhibiting the release of serotonin and prostaglandins, both of which are believed to aid the onset of migraines, feverfew limits the inflammation of blood vessels in the head. This would, in theory, stop the blood vessel spasm which is believed to contribute to headaches.

It also contains a lot of melatonin but I don't put it in my sleepy tea because I don't have a lot of it this year and want to save it for headaches and also because it has such a bitter taste. If I put it in the sleepy tea then hubby wouldn't drink it.

Hubby had a rare migraine a few days ago, rare as in "once a year". I gave him some feverfew tea. The taste was so bad that he only drank half of it. Within 10 mins he was up exclaiming at how well it worked and how it just almost instantly lifted the weight. He drank the rest down down without comment.

I have always grown it with double flowers in the flowerbed. This year I planted a long row in the herb garden and will add another row soon for next year.

Mullein is said to be good for headaches but its a narcotic pain reliever, so would work on a migraine much like Advil, which doesn't. If you have ever had a real migraine, you'd know that narcotic pain relievers don't work. The triptan drugs, mentioned above, work by regulating the size of the blood vessels in your head and they work very well but are prohibitively expensive.

Meadowsweet is also a good pain reliever, being the plant aspirin was originally derived from. It contains all the properties of aspirin without the stomach upset. It's even prescribed to help ulcers and other gastrointestinal disorders.

I have both meadowsweet and mullein growing and intend to dry as much of them all this year as I can!

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Read an interesting article, based on a scientific study, that says water helps keep migraines away for some people. [url=]Here is a link[/url].

Oppressive heat and spikes in temperature have long been thought to precipitate attacks in people prone to chronic headaches. One large study in the journal Neurology even showed that the risk of migraines jumps nearly 8 percent for every 9-degree rise in temperature.

...Dehydration causes blood volume to drop, researchers say, resulting in less blood and oxygen flow to the brain and dilated blood vessels. Some experts suspect that a loss of electrolytes causes nerves in the brain to produce pain signals.

Anyone who has ever woken up dehydrated after a night of heavy drinking knows this feeling as a hangover. But migraine sufferers may be more sensitive to the effects of dehydration.

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I've heard that drinking it daily will guarantee that you never show symptoms again. My wife has migraine issues. She does not like the taste of feverfew. I give her blue vervain and raspberry leaves and it seems to do the trick as well.

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I'm not going to popular in the US for saying this (because you can't get it up there), but Coca leaf works about 10 times better for us than Feverfew against migraine type headaches (both my mother and I suffer). I also find that it tastes better, but that's a totally personal thing.

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Ah, lorax, you know we're just jealous...

I worked for neuro and pain relief docs. Butterbur was the most common herb prescribed. We gathered all sorts of info from our migraineurs, and could see trends in food allergies, hormones, chemical sensitivities, sleep deprivation, stress buildup, etc.

Still I was on on triptans.

Now I just don't wear perfume, or eat chocolate (much), or produce estrogen. I also take a relatively large amount of naproxen sodium daily prophylactically. Instead of 2-3 a week, I have 2-3 a year.

And some few migraineurs do benefit from narcotics. It may not be the pain relief per se, but could be affecting stress levels.

One of my coworkers gets Botox injections that have helped.

I don't know what it was in my migraine profile, but butterbur was not the first choice for me even though they knew I was amenable to trying it.

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I'm going to look up all the herbal remedies mentioned here. 8)
I have to agree about the weather and atmo pressure though. I don't pay attention to the news, etc much and I don't follow the weather except near first/last frost and during drought, yet I will have occasions where I'll get that Pre-migraine feeling, look around at the sunny garden, and pull up the weather forecasts saying "is there a storm coming? my head is killing me!" --- yep! a big one, on its way. :x :roll:

I tend to rely more on homeopathics than herbs though. It will be interesting to see if there are some that will help. :wink:

Oh! And I must have read/heard about the dehydration issue before because first thing I say to my kids when they have a headache is "have you been drinking enough water?" :lol: Also, I find some headache can be relieved if I eat protein. I don't know why. (I have a mental checklist for all the likely culprits and possible countermeasures because they sometimes help to forestall a full-blown migraine.)

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Low blood sugar can cause headaches that are lessened by eating protein.

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Just a caution on trying something too whole heartedly - I was taking an herbal supplement that ended up rather hepatoxic to me; my liver couldn't handle that particular herbal remedy.

Interesting that feverfew works on inflammation - but it also appears to be a serotonin reducer which could complicate some types of depression as well. Additionally, it can reduce the effects of some anti-coagulant drugs and apparently cause heart palpitations. Check with your preferred medical professional and monitor your intake and reactions appropriately. I also read that it can affect some types of asthma, so I'll skip trying this one for now - I don't want to aggravate my lungs any more than I have to.

I've had a number of fewer migraines (almost none) since taking care of one chronic health issue, but even fewer since changing my diet a bit to include more foods known to reduce inflammation, but YMMV and all that.

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Lorax, Wow, I bet it does! No, you certainly can't get it up here!

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My headache soother tea is:

Bee balm
(equal parts)

I don't know if it works for migraines, which I don't have, but it tastes lovely and is soothing. Works pretty well for tension headaches.

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I only use feverfew when I have a migraine, once. It works well enough so that is all it takes. I don't take it at any other time. The taste is prohibitive! lol!

I have a LOT fewer migraines since restricting my wheat intake. Too much wheat is a definite trigger for me. So is low blood sugar, so watching the simple sugars and eating every 1.5 - 2 hours helps with that.

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