Headaches and migraines have a way of turning even the best days sour. What’s more, because there are so many different types of headaches and migraine symptoms, there’s no telling how much pain you go through until the migraine attacks start.
But before you turn to modern medicine for body and tension headache relief, have you considered sipping herbal teas first?
It’s a worthwhile option as drinking tea can have a soothing effect on your body and blood vessels and, in the process, help reduce pain and alleviate the discomfort you feel in your head.
So, keep reading to find out how one cup of tea can help you better manage headaches and migraines and the best teas to drink for relief next time you feel migraine headaches looming!
Is Tea Good for Headaches?
One reason many people are so (understandably) skeptical about taking advantage of herbal teas is that, more often than not, the health benefits they claim to have don’t have any sound scientific backing.
Knowing this, it’s only natural to ask; is taking herbal tea for headaches and migraine a good idea?
Yes, drinking herbal teas is beneficial.
This is because these teas have been scientifically proven to possess healing properties that relieve everything from tension headaches to migraine attacks.
You may also have heard that drinking caffeinated teas like black tea and green tea offer similar health benefits, and that’s true. But even so, we encourage you to find a better alternative to caffeinated tea, if you can.
The Dangers of Caffeinated Tea
While the potential health benefits of caffeinated teas like Japanese green tea, black tea, and oolong tea, for headache and migraine treatment, are undisputed, the potential side effects that come attached shouldn’t be disregarded either.
Just as the name suggests, caffeinated teas contain caffeine.
Consumed in small amounts, caffeine can boost mental and physical health in addition to offering pain relief for migraine and headache symptoms. This is because caffeine possesses anti-inflammatory properties.
But when it comes from a source like green tea or black tea, it can be difficult to determine just how much of it is entering your body and blood system.
This is more so the case if you also consume other caffeinated beverages and foods throughout the day. The caffeine adds up and consistently consuming too much of it is harmful in the long run.
Overexposure to caffeine can result in severe side effects like;
As you can imagine, any or all of these conditions can profoundly affect your quality of life.
Because of this, a caffeine-free option for managing migraine and headache symptoms, like herbal tea is better for you.
What’s more, as herbal tea isn’t only caffeine-free but also tasty, you’ll be able to enjoy sipping these teas more freely, if only as a healthy and delicious beverage!
The 10 Best Teas for Headaches and Migraines
If you’re in a hurry, some of the best teas for headaches are:
- Linden Tea
- Peppermint Tea
- Turmeric Tea
- Ginger Tea
- Feverfew Tea
- Clove Tea
- Lavender Tea
- Willow Bark Tea
- Lemon Balm Tea
- Chamomile Tea
From tension headaches to mild migraines, taking one cup of any of the caffeine-free teas above will help reduce pain by soothing your blood vessels and making stress signs and symptoms a little easier to manage.
Here’s more on each of these amazing teas for headaches.
1) Linden Tea
Also commonly referred to as lime tree tea, this is a great herbal tea for relieving the symptoms of tension headaches. In addition to their potent anti-inflammatory properties, these teas are also widely known for their ability to alleviate stress and promote sleep.
Because it contains trace amounts of sedatives and is one of the best mild pain relievers, there are several health benefits to be had from adding this cup of tea to your diet.
2) Peppermint Tea
Another herbal tea that’s better than green tea for headaches is peppermint tea. Peppermint tea has been used to treat migraines and tension headaches for a long time and has proven to be good for this.
In addition to being drunk as tea, peppermint, in the form of peppermint oil, can also promote head pain relief. Research also suggests that just the aroma of peppermint tea can also reduce stress and increase alertness, too.
3) Turmeric Tea
Arguably one of the most potent teas for migraines and different types of headaches, the secret to the efficacy of turmeric tea is its active ingredient, curcumin. Because of this, when you drink turmeric tea, you’re exposed to the neuroprotective properties of this agent.
Turmeric tea can help treat the pain from head discomforts easily and soothe your body with its rich, earthy taste.
4) Ginger Tea
A common ingredient in every kitchen, ginger is known to possess several health benefits. For instance, a study revealed that consuming ginger powder gave off the same migraines and headache relief effects as ingesting a dose of sumatriptan!
More specifically, consuming ginger tea not only offers headache pain relief but can also bolster your immune system and combat oxidative stress. Ginger tea can also increase your energy levels and help with weight loss.
5) Feverfew Tea
Feverfew mixed with boiling water has been used to treat a wide range of health conditions over the years. The ability of a feverfew brew to relieve migraine and headache pain stems from the fact that it can reduce inflammation effectively.
6) Clove Tea
Drinking clove tea for illnesses is a treatment that’s popular in Ayurveda. Also commonly referred to as LAVANG, clove tea doesn’t possess strong anti-inflammatory properties. However, its antimicrobial and antioxidant effects are off the charts.
Because of this, clove tea helps with pain relief from migraines and most types of headaches by helping your body reduce its perception of pain.
To enjoy the benefits of this tea, just put one spoon of clove in boiling water, wait for 10 minutes and then strain before drinking the cup of tea. You’ll feel as good as new afterward!
7) Lavender Tea
As a medicinal herb, the positive effects of lavender are unparalleled, so it comes as no surprise that drinking lavender tea can also be helpful.
Not only does lavender tea reduce inflammation and help the occasional headache pain disappear, but it can also combat stress, and depression and even help you sleep better as well.
8) Willow Bark Tea
With an active ingredient known as salicin which is the natural equivalent of aspirin without the side effects, willow bark tea is one of the best tea for headaches.
This herbal tea is so potent and similar in composition to aspirin that medical practitioners recommend that you not take aspirin if you plan to drink this tea.
9) Lemon Balm Tea
Better known for its use in aromatherapy, tea made from lemon balm can alleviate much of the pain from headaches or migraines.
10) Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea is the staple relaxation tea and the best tea for headaches.
From its calming aroma to its soothing taste, taking chamomile tea for headaches is one of the best things you could do when you start to feel the pains coming on.
Drinking tea made from chamomile not only washes away all of the discomforts you’re feeling but it can also put you to sleep quickly, thanks to its potency in taming anxiety and insomnia.
When’s the Best Time to See a Doctor?
If you’re like most people, you want migraines or bouts of headaches gone as soon as they start. Drinking soothing peppermint, feverfew, or chamomile tea for headaches is a great way to make that happen.
That being said, you shouldn’t rely solely on these herbal brews if your headaches don’t go away or occur more frequently. Although several relatively harmless things can cause headaches, such occurrences can also be symptoms of a more serious problem.
So, you should make sure to see your doctor if you’ve been experiencing this discomfort for months at a stretch. Your doctor will be in the best position to tell you if you should stick with home remedies or seek stronger treatment if there are underlying health conditions.
Taking cups of tea for headaches and migraine symptoms can go a long way in offering you relief, especially if you aren’t too keen on taking drugs. Avoiding practices that can cause headaches such as not getting enough sleep or not drinking sufficient water can also prove helpful.
Not that you know which teas alleviate the headache, learn which teas are great for soothing a sore throat next.
Let me know in the comments – what ailments do you use herbal teas for?
- Allison P. W., et al. (2015). Update on the management of rosacea.
- Andrew S., et al. (2014). Anti-stress effects of lemon balm-containing foods.
- Anil P., et al. (2011). Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium L.): A systematic review.
- Anna V. M., et al. (2018). Energy drinks and atrial fibrillation in young adults.
- Arianna A., et al. (2015). Bud extracts from Tilia tomentosa Moench inhibit hippocampal neuronal firing through GABA and benzodiazepine receptors activation.
- David O. K., et al. (2004). Attenuation of laboratory-induces stress in humans after acute administration of Melissa officinalis (Lemon Balm).
- Diego F. C., et al. (2014). Clove (Syzygium aromaticum): a precious spice.
- Fatemeh J., et al. (2017). The effect of quercetin on inflammatory factors and clinical symptoms in women with rheumatoid arthritis: a double-blind, randomized controlled trial.
- Gobel H., et al. (2016). Peppermint oil in the acute treatment of tension-type headache.
- Harvard Health Publishing. (2015). Drinking tea may benefit the heart and blood vessels, from the July 2015 Harvard Heart Letter.
- Ian C., et al. (2017). Coffee, caffeine, and sleep: a systematic review of epidemiological studies and randomized controlled trials.
- Khizar H., et al. (2013). Tea and its consumption: benefits and risks.
- Koroglu O. A., et al. (2014). Anti-inflammatory effect of caffeine is associated with improved lung function after lipopolysaccharide-induced insomnia.
- Lieberman H. R., et al. (1987). The effects of low doses of caffeine on human performance and mood.
- Maribel H., et al. (2008). Flavonoids from Tilia americana with anxiolytic activity in plus-maze test.
- Martins E. (2013). The growing use of herbal medicines: issues relating to adverse reactions and challenges in monitoring safety.
- Medical News Today. What are the health benefits and risks of lavender?
- Mehdi M., et al. (2014). Comparison between the efficacy of ginger and sumatriptan in the ablative treatment of the common migraine.
- Michigan State University. (2016). Stressed? Peppermint can help!
- Minting L., et al. (2017). Parthenolide suppresses non-small cell lung cancer GLC-82 cells growth via B-Raf/MAPK/Erk pathway.
- Mohammad P., et al. (2021). The synergistic effects of nano-curcumin and coenzyme Q10 supplementation in migraine prophylaxis: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial.
- Muller S. F., et al. (2006). A combination of valerian and lemon balm is effective in the treatment of restlessness and dyssomnia in children.
- Nafiseh S. M., et al. (20213). Anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory effects of ginger in health and physical activity: review of current evidence.
- NHS UK. Migraine Symptoms.
- Niels P. R., et al. (2009). Acute and long-term cardiovascular effects of coffee: implications for coronary heart disease.
- Russell L. D., et al. (2018). Salicin.
- Sergi F. (2008). An update on the mechanisms of the psychostimulant effects of caffeine.
- Tina G., et al. (2022). The effect of lavender on stress in individuals: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
- Vahideh E. A., et al. (2018). A systematic review of the anti-obesity and weight lowering effect of ginger (Zinigiber officinale Roscoe) and its mechanisms of action.
- Wikipedia. Ayurveda.
- Wikipedia. Curcumin.
- Ying H. J., et al. (2011). Caffeine intake and risk of stress, urgency, and mixed urinary incontinence.