Plant-based, alternative headache treatment

Because there are different types of headaches, and they can vary in intensity, frequency, location, and root cause - they can be very difficult to treat. While most headaches can be managed with over the counter pharmaceuticals and occur sporadically, others can experience regular, intense headaches and require prescribed treatments. Recently, anecdotal evidence suggests that plant-based products may be also able to reduce the severity of pain felt during a headache, and could be a suitable option for some.

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3 Million

workdays are lost due to headache related absences in the UK each year.

190,000

migraine attacks take place every day in the UK, say Brain Research UK.

76%

of sufferers support the use of plant-based migraine treatments survey finds.

47%

reduction in headache severity reported after natural treatment in a patient survey.

“Having a medical cannabis card makes me feel better - and that counts“

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Daisy, Releaf Patient

October 2023

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Symptoms

Moderate to severe pain

Throbbing pain

Pulsing pain

Sensitivity to light

Nausea or vomiting

Loss of appetite

Fatigue

Problems with vision

If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, you may have Headaches. Please speak with your GP to find out more.

Treatment options:

Acute headache treatments try to help during an attack, while preventative treatments can be used to try to stop headaches occurring, or reduce their frequency. In the UK, analgesics and anti-sickness medications may be prescribed to reduce pain and discomfort during a headache, while options like deep brain stimulation and occipital nerve stimulation may be recommended as a preventative treatment.

Corticosteroids

Lithium

Verapamil

Triptans

Anti-sickness medications

Beta blocking drugs

Amitriptyline

Find out if you may be eligible for alternative, natural headache treatments here
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A word from our specialist

"Neurological conditions are many and varied in how they can affect us. The more recognised conditions that are treatable with medical cannabis include epilepsy, where CBD mimics the action of the many anti-epileptic drugs; and multiple sclerosis, which the NHS can prescribe Sativex for. Medical Cannabis offers greater flexibility in the delivery of cannabinoid therapy for these conditions and hope in other areas of neurology, such as in the neurodegenerative conditions and the motor disorders."
Dr David Tang

Neurological Specialist

Can plant-based products help relieve headaches?

There are four types of headaches: cluster headaches, tension headaches, hypnic headaches and migraine headaches. 

But, regardless of their type, headaches can have a large impact on a person’s day-to-day activities and their ability to work or concentrate, which can poorly impact their quality of life, and contribute to the development of mental health conditions like depression or anxiety. 

In 2018, plant-based, alternative treatments emerged as a new option for patients who were struggling to find relief with conventional approaches. This is because emerging evidence suggests that certain natural, plant chemicals can interfere with pain signals, and reduce the perception, or severity, of pain, when they enter the body. 

Anecdotal reports show that many of those who have tried these natural alternatives note a reduction in pain and an improvement in their quality of life. These options are not suitable for everyone, but they may be able to offer relief to patients who have yet to find this response with conventional approaches. 

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