Getting rid of headaches by applying slight force or pressure to certain pressure points is called acupressure. Acupressure is derived from the ancient Chinese healing method of acupuncture. Pressure points are clusters of nerves located at various points on the body, which help regulate blood circulation. Headaches -- especially those brought on by anxiety, the common cold or menstruation -- are caused by a tightness and stiffness in the neck and face muscles that inhibit blood circulation. Stimulating the pressure points by massaging them will help relax the tight muscles and increase blood circulation, thus relieving the headache [source: Scientific American].
Now, we'll learn where those points are and what to do. Get ready to say goodbye to your headache [source: Boyd]:
- Locate your temples. They're on either side of your head about 1 inch (2.54 centimeters) behind your eyes. Place your thumbs on your temples and simultaneously massage them by gently rotating your thumbs in a counter-clockwise direction.
- Place your thumbs at the back of your neck, on the base of your skull on the two sides of your spinal column. Tilt your head back a bit and press your thumbs in while pushing slightly upward.
- Find the meaty part on the back of your hand. It is just above the webbing between the thumb and the index finger. Using your other thumb, squeeze the muscle by pressing down hard.
- Using your index fingers, gently massage the inside ends of your eyebrows just above the bridge of your nose.
- Place your index finger between your big toe and your second toe. Move your finger up about 1 inch (2.54 centimeters) to where the bones of your toes meet the inside of your foot. Press that point straight down.