Research Publications on Peppermint for Headaches

Peppermint oil, known for its analgesic properties, can significantly alleviate headache symptoms through mechanisms such as cooling the skin, altering calcium channels in cold receptors, and inhibiting substances like serotonin that cause smooth muscle contractions. 

Essential plant oils and headache mechanisms; Phytomedicine, 1995; Link

The use of peppermint oil for headaches is based on its analgesic properties. It creates a cooling effect on the skin by altering the calcium channels in cold receptors and has been found to inhibit serotonin and substance P, which are known to cause smooth muscle contractions. Additionally, peppermint oil can increase blood flow on the forehead when applied locally. A study with 32 healthy subjects, conducted in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized cross-over design, tested the effects of preparations containing varying concentrations of peppermint and eucalyptus oils combined with ethanol. The substances were applied to the forehead and temples and their effects were measured against baseline conditions. Results showed that while the combination of peppermint and eucalyptus oils with ethanol improved cognitive performance and had a relaxing effect, it did not significantly affect pain sensitivity. However, a significant reduction in headache sensitivity was achieved by using a combination of peppermint oil and ethanol. These findings suggest that peppermint oil can play a role in addressing mechanisms related to clinical headache syndromes. The study recommends that further research, comparing essential oil preparations to standard analgesics, be conducted to evaluate their efficacy in a clinical setting.

Therapeutic Uses of Peppermint -A Review; Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research Preview publication details, 2015; Link

Peppermint or mentha piperta is a common herb that is grown in Europe and north America. The oil of ppepermint has been used for various purposes since time imemoriable, to treat headache, common cold, neuralgia etc.