We all know that exercise is an important part of a healthy routine, but did you know that it can also relieve headaches?
Why, you may ask? Some headaches are caused by a restriction to circulation or stress, and exercise stimulates circulation and makes blood and oxygen flow more freely to all parts of the body. Also, exercise can help reduce stress by releasing pent-up anxiety, which can be a major cause of headaches. Exercise also releases endorphins, which can help alleviate a headache.
What sort of exercises should you do? Combine cardiovascular with weights, to start with.
You don’t have to do the exercises during a headache, but if you do your exercises at a certain time of day, you will start to notice a change in how you feel, and a fewer number of headaches.
Stretching exercises are good for headaches that begin with neck tension and muscle stiffness in the shoulders. This is helpful to those who have desk jobs and develop headaches because they aren’t getting up and moving around much, or allowing themselves a few minutes to stretch.
Yoga is a good form of exercise and Pilates. They work on the mind as well as the body. A relaxed body is often a relaxed mind. And a relaxed mind can contribute to a relaxed body.
Since there is a mind/body connection, there couldn’t be a more appropriate exercise.
Other things you can do besides exercise are eat properly and get enough rest.
A balanced diet of protein, vegetables, fruit, vitamins, minerals, and water will keep you feeling like your body is supposed to. Sometimes headaches are brought on by too much sugar or caffeine, or caffeine and sugar withdrawal, so be mindful that the food you eat and the beverages you drink have an effect on how you feel.
Getting the right amount of sleep is extremely important. Seven or eight hours is the average amount, but sometimes a nap is in order.
Headaches can also be caused by sinus pressure, so make sure you are addressing your allergy and sinus problems as well.
Severe or persistent headaches can be a sign of Migraines, so if you try everything without finding relief, see a doctor.
If stress is the culprit and your attempts at relieving it fail, you can see a counselor about getting to the bottom of your stress and finding strategies to deal with it.