The following information is from here and here.
- Tension headaches: These are the most common type of headache and are marked by pain at the temples or back of the head or neck.
- Cluster headaches: Tend to affect men slightly more than women and occur in groups or cycles. They are characterized by a sharp or debilitating pain in one side of the head, usually causing a watery eye or nose on the same side of the face. Cluster headaches can be treated with acupuncture or Chinese herbs.
- Sinus headaches: Common in people who suffer from sinus infections. Acupuncture around the nose and sinus area is an effective treatment.
- Rebound headaches: A type of recurring headache that can actually be caused by using over-the-counter painkillers. If you’re using drugs regularly to treat headaches (more than a couple of times per week), you’re at an increased risk for rebound headaches because you’re building a dependency.
- Migraine headaches: These headaches include severe, often debilitating pain for a wide range of time, often between four and 72 hours. The pain is a strong, throbbing pain usually behind one eye and comes with nausea and sensitivity to light.
Wild tian ma was the only source until the 1970s when it was successfully cultivated. It is widely used for relieving headaches, dizziness, numb limbs and convulsions.
According to the legend, the use of tian ma started when an ancient tribe suffered headaches, limb spasms and even paralysis. To save his people, the tribe leader set off to see a doctor in the mountains. He found the doctor's cave, but fell unconscious after arriving.
When he came around, the old doctor served him a bowl of herbal medicine. The doctor told him that he had prepared the herbs for his people. The old man disappeared after this and the tribal leader realized it was a heavenly being.
The herbs worked. Since it was a gift from a heavenly being from heaven and used for treating numbness and paralysis, the herb was named tian ma (heaven numbness).
I bought the box of Tian Ma which costs S$7.50 for 30 capsules.