We’ve all been there, an overwhelming lethargy hangs over you all morning, you wince your way through lunch and then it hits. Around 2 o’clock your head starts pounding, a light sweat develops on your brow and just like ‘that’ you’ve been sentenced to function for the rest of the work day with a headache.
Ranging from an uncomfortable numbing to a seismic throb, the headache will rarely incapacitate but will surely slow productivity. Here are five ways to quickly shift that mid-afternoon headache at work.
1. Know your enemy
Headaches come in all shapes and sizes and their ability to be treated depends on their breed. If you’ve been pushing yourself at work, the likelihood is that you’ve got a tension headache. A sinus headache feels similar to a migraine but cannot be treated with migraine medication and rebound headaches occur if you’re too liberal with drugs like paracetamol and ibuprofen.
All nuts, except peanuts, which are legumes for some reason, are fantastic for countering headaches. They contain a substance called salicin which is a natural pain reliever as well as magnesium which functions as a muscle relaxer.
3. Venture outside
There’s not too much science behind this one but any frequent sufferer will attest to the restorative powers of the outside. Get away from your desk and walk outside for a while. Not only will it help relax you but the cold air will improve circulation to your brain.
4. Check your (diet) before you wreck yourself
Have you just turned vegan or are you trying the 5-2 diet? If you’re not balancing your nutrients properly don’t be surprised if you start developing headaches frequently. Back your meals with ginger tea, cinnamon and plenty of protein.
5. Ice, ice, baby
Your coworkers might stare but we wager they’ll wish they had thought of it. Wrap some ice cubes in a thin towel and hold it against your forehead for a few minutes. This will numb the pain by shrinking the blood vessels and improving blood flow – it might not be the most combative of solutions but it’s super relieving.