Over 30% of people report having headaches which continue long after injury.
With a traumatic brain injury comes the inevitable symptom of headaches, which occur on a much more regular basis than the average person. They are a common symptom after a TBI, often called “post-traumatic headaches.”
It’s not easy dealing with the struggles of headaches, let alone all of the other TBI symptoms like hypersensitivity and mental fatigue.
Headaches can also hinder the recovery process by adding stress and discouraging thoughts to the mind, increasing rest time, and potentially adding more prescriptions to the to the medication regimen. One thing is certain, the headaches that come after TBI are not enjoyable.
There are different ways to help overcome these headaches as a side effect of TBI, and what will work for you will greatly depend on your body’s reactions and strength.
Causes of Headaches After TBI
When a brain injury occurs, there is typically a significant change in the brain that follows. Other possible reasons are neck and skull injuries that have yet to fully heal, tension and stress, or even side effects from medication.
There are also different types of headaches associated with TBI, which include migraines, tension-type, cervicogenic, and rebound headaches – each with their own particular symptoms and targeted pain areas.
In the simplest sense, a headache is caused directly by the overactivity of (or issues with) structures in the head that are pain-sensitive.
These are things like blood vessels, nerves, and muscles of the head and neck. Alternatively, headaches may also occur because of changes in brain chemical activity.
It can be hard to determine the appropriate solution for your situation, so it is always best to seek professional advice.
However, starting off, here are a few natural solutions and homeopathic remedies that might help you find relief from headaches.
This is a natural form of aspirin, it is the bark of the white willow tree. White willow has been used for over 5,000 years as a powerful natural remedy to cure headaches, arthritis, improve heart health and skin health, and for many other painful illnesses.
White willow may be worth trying for your headache symptoms with its great success rate and ancient traditional use!
This is an important mineral crucial for many functions in the body, including nerve transmission. Magnesium has proven in many studies to be a safe and effective remedy for headaches.
Try taking a magnesium supplement or increasing your daily intake through magnesium-rich foods.
These are highly concentrated liquids that might be really helpful for headaches depending on the ones you use – peppermint and lavender essential oils seem to be especially helpful in this case.
You can take these in different forms, such as aromatherapy or in tablets, or you can apply it directly to your temples for tension headaches.
Try peppermint oil for direct application and lavender oil for inhalation through aromatherapy.
Herbal remedies come in many different forms, such as butterbur root and feverfew, which are among the most popular for headache reduction.
You could also try soothing herbal teas such as chamomile, lavender, ginger, peppermint, or feverfew tea.
Try changing a few lifestyle habits to help reduce headache severity, such as getting enough sleep, drinking plenty of water, avoiding caffeine and certain foods, and getting enough daily exercise.
If your headaches seem to be getting worse, it’s best to visit your doctor for more professional advice tailored to you specifically.
Try keeping a “headache diary” to help you keep track of your headaches, when they usually occur, when to expect them, and other important information that might help you and your doctor evaluate the right treatment.