Headaches that arise in the forehead or surrounding the sinuses are generally due to some sort of phlegm, damp, or other fluid metabolism issue. This would include the nasal discharge associated with the common cold as well.
There are a number of organs that are devoted to some aspect of fluid metabolism in Chinese medicine. The way that the water moves about the body is considered a big deal in Chinese medicine. Anything that compromises the normal fluid metabolism can generate a variety of problems that we call phlegm and damp.
If the sinus headache is associated with the common cold or flu, that is a slightly different animal. But for headaches due to allergies, or aggravated by heavy meals, you’re on the correct page.
Headaches can be slightly annoying or absolutely devastating. A dull headache that appears after the period then one can look at Si Wu Tang. If they are milder or appear around the time of the period or with stress, we suggest either Xiao Yao Wan or Jia Wei Xiao Yao Wan. If there is a rage associated with it, bright red tongue or thick coat then take a look at Gentiana Combination (long dan xie gan tang). If your headache is associated with a “muzzy head”, unclear thoughts, heavy head, thick yellow coat then look at Wen Dan Tang and see if it fits your symptoms. Continue reading
In America you “catch a cold”. In China, the cold catches you! (my apologies to Yakov Smirnov)
Not only can you catch a cold, which causes chills, but you can catch a heat which causes fever, a damp which makes you feel sluggish and heavy, or a wind which causes muscle spasms, nasal discharge and water eyes.
Cold, heat, and damp often arise with wind which has some interesting similarities to the biomedical idea that cold and flu viruses are spread through the so-called aerosol vector (sneezing or coughing into the air.)