Headache is defined as the pain in and around the head and neck. Headache is a symptom rather than disease. Headaches are characterized by a feeling of tenseness in the neck, shoulder and scalp.


  • Stress
  • Lack of sleep
  • Physical and mental exhaustion
  • High blood pressure
  • Weak eyesight
  • Sinusitis
  • Hunger
  • Anemia
  • Listening to excessive loud music
  • Studying in improper light
  • Due to emotional strain
  • Overwork
  • Fasting
  • Constipation and flatulence
  • Due to intake of alcohol and smoking
  • Sudden stopping of intake of coffee or tea
  • Abnormal activity of certain neurons
  • Dilatation and constriction of blood vessels
  • In females, changes in the hormone levels during menstrual cycle or with the use of birth control pills


  • Watering from the eyes
  • Bleeding from the nose
  • Giddiness
  • Pain in the back of the neck and shoulders
  • Pain in the head


According to Ayurveda, headache is compared with Shirhashoola. It is caused due to vitiation of vata and kapha dosha in the body. When vata dosha gets obstructed by the kapha dosha in the head, it causes headache. As the pain increases in its intensity, pitta dosha also gets imbalanced and hence causes burning sensation in the head along with nausea and vomiting.

It is believed that the headache is caused due to two main reasons. One is impaired digestion and the cause is sensitive nervous system. Improper diet leads to the aggravation of the pitta dosha. The aggravated pitta dosha leads to the production of toxins in the body which is known as ama in ayurveda. This ama dosha then starts getting accumulated in the manovahi srotas and hence causes headache.

Panchkarma therapies that are indicated in shirhashool are:

  • Shiroabhyanga
  • Shirodhara
  • Shirobasti
  • Takradhara
  • Nasya

Single herbs beneficial in this case are:

  • Sariva
  • Yashtimadhu
  • Bala
  • Amalaki
  • Aloe Vera
  • Haritaki
  • Coriander
  • Saffron
  • Cinnamon
  • Cardamom
  • Ginger

Ayurvedic formulations recommended in shirhashool are:

  • Shirhashooladi Vajra Rasa
  • Chandrakala Rasa
  • Manasmitra Gutika
  • Brahmi Vati
  • Pathyadi Kwatha
  • Saptamrita Loha
  • Godanti Bhasma
  • Kamdudha Rasa
  • Madananand Modak Churna
  • Nidrodya Rasa


  • Avoid taking tea, coffee, cold drinks and other caffeinated beverages.
  • Baked foods, dairy foods, heavy to digest non veg foods, processed and fermented foods should be strictly avoided.
  • Have warm and easily digestible foods
  • Have boiled and steemed vegetables, soups, vegetable juices.
  • 5-6 almonds or walnuts and some raisins can be eaten every day.
  • Eat fruits like apples, papayas, mangoes, grapes and pears.
  • Buttermilk is highly beneficial in case of headache.
  • Avoid working for long hours continuously
  • Avoid exposure towards hot and cold weather.
  • Perform simple exercises to reduce the intensity of headache. Move your chin upwards and downwards, left and right and bend the neck sideways towards each shoulder by turns. These exercises cause the relaxation of the muscles and hence reduces the pain.


  • Take one cup of warm water and add a green tea bag to it. Squeeze half a lemon and mix well. Drink this for instant relief.
  • Separate the outer covering of 2-3 lemons. Chop and crush the lemon’s outer covering to make a paste. Apply this paste on the forehead for quick relief from the headache.
  • Take two tablespoon of cinnamon powder and add water to prepare its paste. Mix well and apply on the forehead for relieving headache.
  • Take one glass of watermelon juice and mix one teaspoon sugar in it. Have this mixture. This is helpful in relieving headaches caused due to heat.
  • Prepare a paste of sandal wood and mix it with rose water and apply this over the forehead.
  • Grind 10-12 grains of black pepper and 10-12 grains of rice with water to make a paste. Apply this paste on the area where it pains.
  • Mix one fourth teaspoon of clove powder with one teaspoon of cinnamon oil. Apply this paste on the affected area for 15-20 minutes.


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