Did You Know…that rubbing your feet can help make a headache disappear?
Headaches happen to everyone at least once in a while, and when the pain strikes, it can be utterly miserable. Many people reach for an over-the-counter painkiller for relief, including popular non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen. But the fact is that ibuprofen and other NSAIDs are associated with significant side effects such as:
- Fluid retention and swelling
Worse yet, these drugs can have very frightening and even deadly side effects including kidney failure, liver failure, and prolonged bleeding after injury or surgery.
Fortunately, natural treatments for headaches are safe and proven effective. One easy, free natural treatment is foot massage using reflexology—a method that stimulates acupressure points using finger pressure in order to elicit a particular response in corresponding parts of the body. With this simple self-administered technique, you can reduce pain and trigger relaxation.
According to archeological evidence, a primitive form of foot reflexology was used as a medical modality in ancient Egypt, China, and Japan. Then, in the 1800s, this method was studied and promoted by Vladmir Bekterev, a Russian neurologist, and by William Fitzgerald, an American physician.
The Theory Behind Foot Reflexology
According to the fundamentals of acupuncture, our hands and feet are maps representing our entire body, including its functions and internal organs. A great deal of research has proven the scientific underpinnings of this theory, which—as mentioned—stems from acupuncture. As far back as 1890, researchers proved a neuralgic relationship between internal organs and skin. This means that pressure applied to the hand or foot can directly affect peripheral nerves. According to reflexology, the body can heal itself, and purposeful pressure and manipulation can reduce pain and speed up healing.
Administering Foot Reflexology for Headaches
At the Temples: The point that corresponds to the temple area is found just inside the big toe. Experts say that by simply applying and releasing pressure several times, you can ease the pain of a temple-centered headache. For the temples, the left foot corresponds to the left temple, and the right foot corresponds to the right temple.
Sinus Headaches: For sinus headaches, experts say you should locate the second joint down on each toe, front and back, and firmly massage this small area on both feet using a squeeze and release technique. This should relieve the pressure.
Headaches in the Center, Front, or Back of the Head: The contact point for a generalized headache is found at the top of each toe, both front and back. This area is manipulated by pinching each of the toes on both feet. The point at the outside base of each big toe is associated with the brain itself. For this area, experts suggest rubbing the base of each big toe firmly.