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How to Treat Headaches Caused By Anxiety

By HERWriter
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Mental Health related image Photo: Getty Images

“One method of conscious breathing is to ask quietly from within what you would like this breath, at this moment, to provide for you,” Zeeb said. “For example, if you're feeling stressed, quietly say to yourself, ‘with this breath, I will bring peace and love to my mind, body and spirit - I ask that all energy that I am holding onto and causing stress in my body be released in this moment.’ Take a breath and know/trust that you are heard, and then relax into the breath. This takes one moment. As you practice doing this throughout your day, you will find that things you thought were important can be released, or at least redirected, without attachment to them.”

If you’re at work, you can always take a quick break if you’re feeling too much anxiety, and you can practice breathing and relaxation techniques, and try to clear your head briefly of all thoughts. If necessary, you can take headache medicine if your doctor approves it.

When I have headaches at work that are possibly caused by anxiety or other issues, I take two Excedrin migraine pills as soon as I feel a headache coming on, and usually that helps me get through the day. However, you should consult your doctor and do not take this as medical advice – this is just what works for me. I also will crack my neck and massage my scalp if needed, and this can help a little. I take all recommended breaks at work and try to clear my mind during these breaks as well, or focus on positive thoughts. Sometimes if you are wearing a tight ponytail that could also be contributing to a headache. Make sure you are getting enough sleep as well, because sleep deprivation can cause headaches or add to headaches caused by anxiety.

An article on www.healthcentral.com suggests taking a hot shower or “using an ice pack and lying down in a dark or quiet room” to treat a tension headache, which could be caused by anxiety.

What gets you through a headache caused by anxiety?

Walfish, Fran. Email interview. August 2, 2011.
Zeeb, Catherine. Email interview. August 2, 2011.

Bailey, Eileen. Tension Headaches. Web. August 2, 2011.

Add a Comment2 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

The points are valid however I believe the article is over simplified. It may not be as easy as all that if someone is in a state where there anxiety causes them to have headaches. Like having an open discussion, there is no open discussion in an abusive relationship. Some of us, by the time we are getting headaches don't know how to treat ourselves well anymore. So what I am saying is that it may take a little more than these suggestions. 4 years post divorce and I still have a headache but I am working on it!!

August 7, 2011 - 9:43am

Great tips, Rheyanne. Number 2 is a tough one for me, but I try to be a friend to myself as often as possible. I would never treat a friend as harshly as I treat myself. Thanks for the reminders. :)

August 4, 2011 - 6:07am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.