Curing Headaches, Pain, and Stress, One Gizmo at a Time
Though I have fewer headaches than I used to thanks to acupuncture, I can usually count on at least one whammer a month. While I do take my fair share of over-the-counter pain pills, I don’t like taking copious amounts of medication for obvious reasons. So, I’m always on the lookout for some thingamajig, doodad, or whiz-bang that can help me manage my pain.
Following are a few things that have really helped me over the last year or so. I know I can’t be the only one dealing with pain, stress, tension, and strain, so I wanted to share them with everyone who’s in the same leaky boat I am.
I use this thing constantly, even when I don’t have a headache. After a long day sitting in front of a computer or behind the wheel of a car in Atlanta traffic (which can feel like I’m driving alongside Mad Max on Fury Road), my neck and shoulders can be rather tight. This thing helps loosen those muscles through gentle pressure. And the best part is you can use it on yourself to great effect. No need to bother anyone else to help you with pain management.
I saw this on Instagram a few times and decided to bite the bullet and order one for myself. It’s a little pricy, but I’ve found that it works wonders when it comes to helping me relax before bedtime. I simply take my melatonin, slap this puppy on for a 15-minute cycle, and I’m usually out cold by the time it’s over. My husband often has to wake me up to tell me to take it off. It really helps with facial tension and overall stress.
I’m on my third set of these super simple tools (because they do stretch out over time). When you feel a headache coming on, you slip one of these over the meaty part of your nondominant hand between the thumb and index finger. It applies gentle pressure to the LI4 acupressure point on your hand, which can help eliminate pain naturally. I usually keep it on for several hours, take a break to see how I’m doing, and then reapply it if things haven’t improved. It’s easy to wear and carry with you, so I usually keep one in my purse or backpack for emergencies.
I know I look like Barney wearing this thing, but boy does it work! When I take it out of the freezer, I usually have to wait a few minutes to use it because it’s so cold it’s painful, but once I get it on, the relief I feel from my tension headaches is blissful. It shuts out light as well, which is a bonus. I simply put it on, sit in my chair, and breathe for a while, and it usually eases my symptoms.
This thing looks weird and intimidating, but I think it really helps. I lie flat on the floor and put it under my neck to help stretch and realign my cervical column. There are two sides (one is gentler than the other), so you have options and can choose which one works best for you. It’s also really easy to pack in a suitcase if you need to take it on a trip!
Sometimes I use the relaxer in concert with this mat and pillow, which look like medieval torture devices. (They kinda are at first.) The plastic spikes help increase circulation to your muscles, which can help with relaxation and overall wellness. I started on this wearing a shirt, then I switched to only wearing a sports bra once I adjusted. I also started with five-minute sessions and worked my way up. You have to get used to the way this one feels, because it isn’t instantly relaxing and enjoyable like the other items on this list, but I have noticed I am looser and more relaxed after a 15-minute session.
So, there you have it, a headache cure starter kit created by one who knows all too well how much headaches and muscle tension truly suck. Let me know if you try one of these, and whether or not they helped. I’d love to hear your recommendations as well. Do you know of a magic cure I haven’t tried yet? If so, drop me a link in the comments!
Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.