acupuncture and herbs for headaches
headaches benefit from acupuncture and herbs
Index to This Headache
  • Location of Headache
  • Herb Formula
  • Tongue Appearance
  • Similar Syndromes
  • Explanation of Mechanism
  • Other Symptoms
  • Applicable Diseases
  • Cautions and Warnings
  • Usage and Prognosis
  • How to Obtain this Formula

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  • radiating from neck
  • forehead
  • sinuses
  • behind the eyes
  • temples
  • one sided
  • top of the head

  • radiating from neck
  • Empty feeling (see fatigue)
  • Sharp pain fixed in location
  • With stiff shoulders (acute)
  • With stiff shoulders (chronic)
  • Throbbing
  • Heavy sensation
  • Dull pain (see fatigue)

  • stress
  • menopause
  • cold or damp weather
  • fatigue
  • PMS
  • dull and throbbing
  • during period
  • after period
  • dry windy weather
  • allergies
  • common cold
  • flu
  • standing upright
  • laying down

  • morning
  • the afternoon
  • the evening
  • sleep period
  • pre-dawn hours

  • cold hands and feet
  • hypothyroidism
  • frequent urination
  • prefers warm drinks
  • prefers cold drinks
  • often thirsty
  • night sweats
  • hot flashes
  • menopause
  • dry mouth or throat
  • better when laying down
  • when hungry
  • after period
  • high blood pressure

  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • lack of appetite
  • phlegm after eating
  • arthritis
  • physical trauma
  • purple beneath eyes
  • sharp pain fixed location
  • chills more than fever
  • fever more than chills
  • facial tics
  • testicular pain
  • Headaches due to a deficiency of Qi and/or Blood

    Location of headache: could be anywhere.

    Herb Formula: Ba Zhen Tang (Eight Precious Ingredients Decoction)

    Tongue Appearance: This tongue is pale from the lack of blood in the body and has teeth marks from the lack of Qi energy providing support to the tongue to maintain its own shape.

    pale color tongue body

    Also see:
    With hypothyroidism: Yang Deficiency
    With no appetite: Phlegm
    With cold hands and feet: Yang Deficiency

    Explanation: There are many substances that need to rise to the head for proper functioning of the brain according to traditional Chinese medicine. Among them are Qi (energy) and Blood. When either of these substances are deficient, a dull ache that is aggravated by fatigue can arise. This headache has been described as a feeling of emptiness in the brain as well.

    This may look a lot like the Kidney Yang deficiency syndrome, but this particular issue doesn't have all the reproductive/bone marrow/urogenital issues associated with it. This syndrome may be diagnosed as chronic fatigue syndrome or anemia. Additionally, Kidney Yang deficiency would be marked by symptoms of cold, such as sensitivity to cold weather, putting on sweaters before anybody else, or cold hands and feet.

    Other symptoms: pale complexion, dizziness, general fatigue, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, loss of appetite, insomnia.

    Applicable diseases: Anemia, irregular menses, chronic uterine bleeding, chronic fatigue syndrome.

    Cautions and warnings: None. Even if this isn't the right formula for you, taking it isn't going to hurt you. It's more like a multi-vitamin than any harsh medicine.

    Usage and prognosis: This formula addresses a deficiency. Deficiency syndromes tend to take longer to fix than problems due to excess factors. As such, you should expect to use this formula for one month for every year you've had this problem. That doesn't mean it will take that long to see an improvement in your headache, but it may take that long to completely fix the problem, if at all. In the elderly, addressing deficiencies can be difficult as the problem may have been growing for so many years that all we can do at this point is help, but not expect to cure. In younger people, say younger than 60 years old, we can expect better response to this formula, though it may be that it will be required as an ongoing therapy. When there are symptoms such as headaches, taking the formula three times per day may be required, however when the symptoms go away, you may chose to continue to take this formula once per day to just keep the problem at bay.

    How to obtain your formula: You can purchase the formula mentioned in this article by simply clicking on its name. Another option is to obtain this formula modified for your unique situation.

    Other locations to purchase this formula include your friendly neighborhood Chinese herb pharmacy. You'll likely need to live near a Chinatown to obtain your herbs there. They'll probably come in raw form (twigs, branches, etc.) and you'll have to take them home and cook them into a nasty tasting brew. This may provide the strongest medical efficacy, but it is also the most hassle.

    In some cases, the formulas that are described in these articles are available in premade capsule, tablet, or pill form. The name of the formula may be spelled or described slightly different, and I can't really anticipate how they'll end up looking on the package, but they too are out there, most frequently at those Chinese herb pharmacies, but often at health food stores or stores that target consumers of natural or organic products.

    Finally, acupuncture and TCM schools tend to carry a rather extensive stock of these kinds of herbal medicines. Most of them have a clinic for people to come in and get treatments. Here's a list of the schools, perhaps there is one near you... TCM schools. Here are some herb suppliers too, they may be able to provide you some help in locating your formula: Herb Suppliers.

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