Are alternative or complementary headache therapies for me?

Many people try complementary therapies for headache pain. Often, they use these nondrug approaches along with their medication. You may have already tried alternative approaches yourself.

If you have tried alternative therapies or if you are considering them, talk to your healthcare providers, both your alternative treatment providers and your medical treatment providers. Tell them everything you're doing to prevent or treat your headaches. Some treatments can affect other treatments. For instance, some alternative therapies can make medications ineffective or increase their side effects. It could be dangerous if you don't talk about all your treatments with all your healthcare providers.

Some alternative therapies people try for headaches include:

  • acupuncture
  • aromatherapy
  • biofeedback
  • chiropractic
  • cognitive-behavioral interventions
  • hypnotherapy
  • relaxation training
  • supplements and herbal remedies
  • TENS

For more information about these different types of nondrug approaches to treating headaches, see What do I need to know about alternative and complementary headache therapies?

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