June 09, 2014

Massage Away Headaches at Work

A common plight of the “office athlete” – whose sport entails sitting for hours staring at a computer – is facial pain brought on by long bouts of reading, screen glare and teeth grinding.

Left unchecked, facial pain can produce sinus and tension headaches, toothaches, blurred vision, and the pressure-cooker feeling that your head might explode. Happily, help is literally at your fingertips.

At least once a week (ideally, once a day) give yourself a face massage to relieve the muscle tension. Here are some techniques for massaging key facial trigger points. Apply light to moderate pressure to avoid aggravating any issues. You should feel a “good” pain; if it hurts too much, back off.

  • For temporal (one or both temples) headaches: Press four fingers against your temporal muscle and move them back and forth, up and down or in a circular motion.
  • For frontal and sinus headaches: Put three fingers of each hand above your eyebrow line and press left to right, to the hairline, without gliding.
  • For tension headaches, tired eyes and sinuses: Press your thumbs up against the underside of your brow bone in your eye socket.
  • For sinus headaches and allergies: With your index and middle fingers, press along, above and below your cheekbones.
  • For stress and tension throughout your body (if you have time for only one exercise, this is the one to do): Using your three middle fingers arranged in a triangle, apply pressure just above the bridge of your nose, known as the “third eye”.

Learn more about Baptist Health along with types of headaches and treatment options.

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