The Best Pressure Points For Headache Relief

Pressure Points for Headaches

Pressure points are the extra sensitive parts of the body that can stimulate relief in your body. Utilizing the body's pressure points can:

  • improve our daily health
  • provide ease in our pain
  • restore the balance in our body

Reflexology is a discipline of Chinese medicine. In this article, we will study how one part of the human body is connected with another. For instance, giving a massage on one location, like your hand, can be used to treat another area, like your head. After reading this article, you will quickly be able reach for the right pressure points and provide relief to your body. 

To effectively utilize  these natural headache treatments, it's essential to understand how to do so correctly.


Acupressure can provide relief to those suffering from headaches. It is an ancient medical art form that originated in China and is built on the philosophy and observations of ancient Chinese medicine practitioners. They realized that stimulating specific points on the body could help heal many injuries. Acupressure is similar to acupuncture, another healing technique that uses tiny needles on the skin along meridians, the lines of energy that run through the body. Acupressure increases blood flow in the areas targeted and can promote healing. 

For many years, people have been using acupressure and acupuncture to get rid of their headaches, however, it's not as simple as it seems. 

Using Acupressure Points to Relieve your Headache

If you're dealing with tension in your head, you should try massaging different acupressure points on your body to stimulate relief.

It's important to know whether you are focusing on the right pressure point or not. Tension relief should work within a minute or so. If the pain has not been relieved, this is a sign you have not found the correct pressure point on your body. Work the area with a gentle massage in a circular motion.

Acupressure points for headaches

Headache pain can be a pervasive experience. According to studies, tension-type headaches affect about 40% of people worldwide, while migraines affect around 10% worldwide.

Activating the following pressure points can help relieve headaches:

Third eye

The third eye pressure point is between your eyebrows, where your nose's bridge meets your forehead.

The following step can help reduce your third eye pain:

  • Use your index finger and apply firm pressure to this area for at least 1 minute.

If you apply hard pressure on the third eye, you should feel relief from eyestrain and sinus pressure that may be causing the headaches.

Drilling bamboo

Drilling bamboo points are usually located on each brow's inside, where the bridge of your nose meets the ridge of your eyebrows.

Follow the below steps to help treat your headache: 

  • Use both of your index fingers and apply firm pressure on both points at once.
  • Hold for at least 10 seconds.
  • Release and repeat this process.

Stimulate one point at a time, alternating between sides. Utilizing these pressure points will provide relief to headaches caused by pain or pressure.

Gates of consciousness

The gates of consciousness pressure points are primarily located at the base of the skull and the parallel hollow area between your two vertical neck muscles.

To use this pressure point technique: 

  • Place both of your index and as middle fingers onto these pressure points.
  • Firmly press upward on both sides for 10 seconds, then release, and then repeat the process.

Massaging the gates of consciousness pressure points helps to relieve neck pain and relieve headaches caused by tension in the neck. 

Shoulder well

The shoulder pressure point sits about halfway between your shoulder joint and the base of the neck.

Use your index and middle fingers on the opposite hand to firmly massage the area, but apply gentle pressure. Remember to do the same on the opposite side. Activating the shoulder pressure point will help relieve stiffness and tension in the shoulder and neck muscles. This could help ease tension headaches.

Union Valley/ Pressure Point LI-4

The union valley points are located between your thumb and index finger.

To treat headaches: 

  • Start by pinching the area with your thumb and index finger of your opposite hand, hard, but not too much pressure where it's painful. Massage for at least 10 seconds.
  • Next, you should make small circles with your thumb on this area in one direction and repeat the process on the other for 10 seconds.

This type of pressure point treatment is used to relieve tension in the head and neck. Stress is often associated with headaches.

A person will find the union valley pressure point on the loose skin between the thumb and index finger. Pinch the pressure point between your thumb and index finger towards the opposite hand. Hold onto the union valley pressure point or massage it by moving the thumb in small circles. This technique is acupressure.   You can perform acupressure multiple times a day, as often as needed to help relieve the pain. Repeat this process on the opposite hand.

Pressure Point for Tension-Type Headache

Pain from the top-of-head, is sometimes caused by stress and tension. Targeting  the pressure point DU-20 will help alleviate the dull pain associated with the tightness of the scalp.

  • To start, press both of your middle fingers onto the highest point at the top of your head.
  • Begin making tiny circles and slowly move down both sides of your skull toward your ears.
  • Repeat this process if needed.

The pressure point for general headaches

Not all pressure points for headache pain are present in your head. Pressure points such as LI-4, are found between the base of your thumb and index finger. Performing acupressure on this point can help relieve pain and headaches. You can treat the problem by accessing either end of these paths: 

  • Make an L shape with your left hand.
  • Use your right thumb and index finger, press down on the spot where the L meets in two.
  • Move your thumb in a circular motion when applying pressure for at least five minutes. Be firm, but do not press so hard that it hurts.
  • Repeat on your right hand.

Does this method work?

Many scientists have studied the success of acupressure for the treatment of headaches. Most existing studies use small sample sizes and lack adequate controls.

The vast majority of scientific research focuses on the effects of massage therapy and compression therapy for the treatment of pain and headache symptoms. Both types of treatment involve stimulating specific points and targeting susceptible areas in the skeletal muscle that can create tension-type headaches.

Important Precautions

Acupressure is not always appropriate to use as the only treatment for acute or chronic conditions, but it is a useful medical care tool.

Acupressure for a headache should not be used: 

  • As the only treatment for your illness; if you are sick, go for a checkup.
  • If you have a heart problem or a similar condition.
  • Before or within 20 minutes after heavy exercise, after eating a large meal, or after taking a bath. 
  • If the pressure point is present under a mole, wart, varicose vein, abrasion, bruise, cut, or other skin breaks.
  • If you are pregnant, especially if more than three months.

Some main points to be noted

With acupuncture's help, you can do more manipulation with the use of needles so the effect lasts longer than acupressure along. However, with acupressure you can keep stimulating the area, just be cautious not to tire your hands out in the process. Though not necessary, essential oils may help augment the massage process on an acupoint. The Association of Migraine Disorders reports that essential oils are primarily made from peppermint or lavender and will provide relief for some people with migraines. Eucalyptus and chamomile also have soothing properties that can help relieve tension and headaches.

Lastly, if you are on any blood-thinning medication or have a blood clotting disorder, bruising nay become an issue for you. You should avoid applying pressure to open wounds or areas with sensitive skin.