There are many natural remedies for depression that have worked for many people. However, this does not imply that medical approaches of treating depression are not important. They also work in some people. In life, there are times when one feels like not talking to any one. Time when they want to be alone. At such times, even advising someone to see a doctor may not be easy. This is when natural remedies become very important.
Known Natural Remedies For Depression
Among the most common means of treating depression that have worked with some people include the following;
Popular psychological means of treating depression include;
Considering the cause of depression: There are times when depression is just a symptom of a circumstantial thing in life. It does not necessarily have to be a result of biochemical imbalances. For instance, you can cure depression by being honest with yourself. If you are faced with a situation that presents a decision that is not easy to make, accept it. Consider your condition carefully because it could be the reason you are depressed. You could be sexually restless, your marriage may not be working and you have to end it. You may also be feeling disconnected spiritually. The best way to treat your depression naturally is by getting to the root of your problem.
Yoga is also a good way of treating depression naturally. Yoga leads to stimulation of the Vegas nerve. This alter moods in a positive manner. Meditation which is the main aspect of yoga helps in altering consciousness. As a result, it helps in relaxing the mind. This is very helpful in depression. In addition, yoga involves breathing techniques, postures, and relaxation. Other relaxation practices and approaches such as music therapy and guided imagery gives relaxation to the mind and body and eventually treating depression.
There are physical practices that can be used to cure depression naturally. They include;
Moving the body:
Exercising is very important. This is because it helps in releasing endorphins that create happiness in the body. These endorphins acts naturally like anti-depressants. Different types of body movements or exercises can help in reducing stress. They help in relaxing the body, mind and eventually reducing depression symptoms. Exercising also increases flexibility, energy and balance. This ensures a healthy body and mind in a safe, easy and effective way.
Massage helps in relaxing the body through a special touch. Your body and mind are interconnected in a special way. Touch therapies are based on this premises. As such, massage help in promoting both physical and emotional health. Naturally, massage cures depression because when the body is relaxed through touch therapy, the mind relaxes as well. This ensures that your mind ensures better health reduced depression and better overall well being.
Yoga may also be classified in this category because it involve physical body movements.
Natural treatments for depression that works biologically include;
Avoiding to skip a meal.
When you keep your blood stable, you help in ensuring stable mood swings. This can only be possible if you avoid skipping meals.
Eat a diet that enhance serotonin:
Many medical anti-depressants such as Prozac works by inhibiting serotonin re uptake by brain receptors. This in return increases the levels of serotonin. However, you can increase serotonin levels in your brain by consuming diets that boost its levels naturally. Some of these food include foods that are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. These include sardines, wild salmon, mackerel, herring, anchovies, among others. Coconut oil is another serotonin enhancing food. Eating diet that has high amount of protein, especially protein that has high amounts of tryptophan such range turkey can also boost serotonin levels.
Avoiding caffeine is another way of treating depression naturally. Caffeine reduces the levels of serotonin
There are various herbal supplements that are believed to treat depression. St. John’s wort is one of them. It has been used by many people to cure depression. However, there are no scientific findings to prove its effectiveness. This is the findings have always been mixed. When using herbal supplements, you need to be very careful. You should only take them after consul
Vitamins and minerals are basic tools that are necessary to maintain good health. They help the various body systems to work efficiently and support efforts to increase and maintain physical, mental, and emotional strength and health. Depression is an illness that has been around probably since man began to walk the earth. Efforts have been and are being made to find good treatment options that will have fewer side effects.
There are some things that you need to know when considering Depression treatment options.
What is Depression?
Depression is a serious illness that in many cases goes untreated. The reason for this is people are embarrassed to admit they need help. This is due in part to the negative stigma still attached to mental illnesses of any kind, no matter how mild or severe it might be. Some people with Depression often put off their condition as part of life and nothing is going to change that. We now have such a wide variety of treatments that have fewer side effects than the first type of anti-depressants that were used. Depression is a physical illness that has to do with the chemicals in the brain that control mood. There can be mild cases to very severe cases and treatments to deal with the depth of Depression you might be experiencing.
What does Depression look like?
There are no real notable changes in the physical appearance of an individual who may be depressed. If you are depressed you may be very tired much of the time, lose interest in things you normally enjoy, and begin to shy away from family and friends. You may experience sleep issues or changes in your appetite. You might be more irritable and edgy than ever before. You may stop caring about how things go on around you. You may lose motivation to do things you normally would do such as hygiene and household tasks. Depression is deep sadness that you may feel will never go away.
How are vitamins and minerals used as treatments for Depression?
There are many vitamins and minerals that support body health. Vitamins, particularly B vitamins, have a very positive effect on mood. Though they can work on their own, they are most often found in groups in foods and in supplements. Biotin, Thiamine, and Riboflavin are just a few of the B vitamins that help support brain health. Biotin for example, is instrumental in supporting the way cells use energy, the synthesis of both fatty and nucleic acids, and it also acts as a co-enzyme in processing protein, fats, and carbohydrates.
Thiamine is important in maintaining energy levels, digestion and is necessary for the metabolism of sugar and starches. Riboflavin also supports energy production, aids in amino acid production, and it helps the process of the body getting and using energy from proteins, carbohydrates and fats as does Biotin.
Vitamins and minerals are important tools for health and are effective in treating Depression however combined with herbs and other nutritive substances their effectiveness can be greatly increased. Herbal supplements of the highest quality will have gone through extensive testing. They will have been tested at the molecular level to determine the metabolic paths of the ingredients. The ingredients’ interactions will also have been studied. When they are made they should have been made to pharmaceutical grade. This will guarantee their safety, efficacy, and potency. You will know you are getting exactly what the label says you are getting.
Vitamins and minerals can be used to help treat Depression. They may be more effective when blended with herbs and other nutritive substances such as amino acids and enzymes. It is especially important that you check with your doctor before adding anything to your health regimen just in case there might be a reason that you should avoid any or all of the supplements contents. Vitamins and minerals for Depression can be and are effective treatment options.
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The treatment of intellectual and developmental disabilities has a long history that is glaringly characterized by abuse, torture and malpractices. In the ancient era, the developmentally disabled were simply left to die. Caging them, isolating them and abandoning them were common practices since it was widely believed that there was no treatment for such individuals. Later, the concept of institutionalization and hospitalization came about but there was little change in the way people mistreated the developmentally disabled and were repulsed by them. For a long time trepanation and blood letting were considered effective treatments, but patients undergoing such treatments often died. It wasn’t until the 1900′s that the world was truly exposed to the plight of the disabled and attempted to better their situation. The scientific and medical community spent more time and money researching developmental disabilities, and this was especially noticeable after the Civil Right Movement and the Disability Rights Movement during the 1950′s. Psychotropic Medication for Developmental Disabilities is a concept that was deeply researched after the mid- 1900′s and today is perhaps the most widely accepted and effective method for treating a wide range of developmental and intellectual disabilities.
The 1950′s are considered the decade of development of antipsychotics. The 1960′s were the decade of the antidepressants while the 19070′s was the decade of anxiolytics, used for the treatment of anxiety disorders. Mood Stabilizers and Stimulants were successfully created to address a wide range of disabilities including bipolar disorders, ADHD, schizophrenia and narcolepsy. Psychedelics and hypnotics refer to a group of medical drugs that had strong effects on the patient and are consumed only under strict medical supervision. Today, the medical community is researching and working towards a new kind of psychotropic medication; commonly referred to as “second generation” drugs. These drugs are developed to treat specific types of illnesses. Modern Science and technology has allowed scientists to create “second generation” drugs that are much more effective and have fewer side effects than the ones that were earlier administered to the developmentally disabled.
The hard truth remains that even the most advanced drugs and medication cannot completely cure developmental and intellectual disabilities. Psychotropic drugs are administered for two reasons: either to better a medical condition or to prevent it from getting worse. They cannot be expected to cure a severe developmental disability or illness, but it must be remembered that this is still a giant leap from the medical treatments that were being practiced only a few decades ago. Science has been progressing at a fascinating rate, and maybe sometime soon an accurate and effective treatment for severe and sometimes debilitating developmental disabilities will be created.
Bobby Harris is a driven, experienced and knowledgeable professional within areas such as healthcare, childhood education,abuse intervention and crisis prevention; organizational leadership and intellec
Despite lifelong periods of sadness, excessive drinking, and social withdrawal, Stephen Akinduro had little inkling that he was depressed and never connected his symptoms to his risky behavior. So Akinduro, a trained pharmacist, didn’t seek therapy until his sexual promiscuity and pornography addiction began to confound his life and finances. I just wanted a quick fix for my behavior, a set of rules and guidelines on how to behave so I could feel normal, the 38-year-old Columbus, Georgia, resident recalls.
His therapist probed into his childhood and eventually revealed the root of Akinduro’s depression. When he was 8, his mother committed suicide after enduring years of abuse from his father. Akinduro witnessed the abuse. I never cried at my mother’s funeral. My father told me ‘big boys don’t cry’ and I sucked it in.
For Akinduro, a depressive episode that would spiral into a catastrophe could be triggered by a relationship breakup or a challenge at work. But like many sufferers he had learned to mask his depression. One supervisor suspected his secret after a heated verbal exchange at work that followed a co-worker’s racially insensitive remark. “I was shocked that he picked up on it but I didn’t want to share my problems with a stranger, says Akinduro, who was eventually told he had bipolar disorder.
Akinduro is one of the roughly 14 million Americans who suffer from a form of depression each year. The disorder is characterized by mood fluctuations, low self-attitude, and five or more symptoms that persist for at least two weeks. These include mood disturbances, difficulty concentrating, psycho-motor retardation (slowing down of function), inexplicable crying, irritability, feelings of impending doom, lack of interest in leisure activities, decreased libido, and social withdrawal. Sufferers may also experience polar behavior such as lack of appetite or overeating and constant sleeping or sleeplessness. Bipolar individuals may engage in high-risk sexual activity. If symptoms persist, they can drive sufferers to commit suicide.
Depression is more intense than the normal feelings of sadness or loneliness that everyone experiences occasionally. It is also different from the grief experienced within two months of the loss of a loved one. Major depression, also called clinical depression and one of the most common forms, decreases quality of life, impairs mental acuity and occupational and emotional functioning, and robs sufferers of experiencing their full potential. Usually precipitated by a traumatic life event or other trigger, an episode of clinical depression may occur only once in a person’s lifetime. But more often, it is a persistent, ongoing experience, with episodes that last for up to two years and that worsen without treatment. Women are more likely to suffer from depression, but men have a higher rate of completed suicide. Although whites experience major depression more than blacks over their lifetimes, it tends to be pervasive and more debilitating for blacks, according to a two-year joint study by Harvard, Wayne State University, and the University of Michigan. Successful treatment is challenging because of blacks’ reluctance to take medication. What’s more, while it’s obvious that depressive conditions affect temperament and disposition, it’s not widely known that these conditions directly impact hormonal functions including the regulation of blood pressure and glucose levels. Ignoring signs of depression could affect your health in ways you might have never imagined.
A Devastating Condition for Blacks
Chronic depression and bipolar disorder are two well-known forms of depression. Also called dysthymia, chronic depression is characterized by two years or more of a depressed mood. Less severe than major depression, it does not typically interfere with an individual’s life. Bipolar disorder, or manic depression, is a complex mood disorder that alternates between periods of clinical depression and those of extreme elation or mania. With bipolar 1 disorder, sufferers have a history of at least one manic episode with or without major depressive episodes. With bipolar 2 disorder, sufferers have a history of at least one episode of major depression and at least one mildly elated episode.
Depression in Blacks is often masked by other issues and as a result may go unacknowledged and untreated for a long time. Stymied by fear of stigmatization, mistrust of health professionals, financial constraints, and the lack of access to appropriate healthcare, blacks tend to quietly carry the burden of depression. Causes of depression can be complex and multilayered-directly related to past personal challenges and/or compounded by collective experiences related to racially tinged slights and discriminatory acts. As a result, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, depressive disorders are less likely to be diagnosed in black people. The 2001-2003 Harvard, Wayne State, and Michigan study-one of the largest psychiatric epidemiological studies of blacks in the United States to date-indicates that of the 3,570 African Americans surveyed, 10.4% suffered from major depression over their lifetimes and 56.5% suffered from it for 12 months within their lifetimes. For the 1,621 Caribbean blacks surveyed, those numbers were 12.9% and 56%, respectively.
These percentages are compounded by the fact that black people manifest specific symptoms that are often misunderstood, ignored, or misdiagnosed, suggests Dr. Patricia Newton, medical director of Baltimore-based Newton & Associates, which specializes in behavioral medicine. Blacks are more likely to be socially withdrawn, and experience guilt and paranoia and internalize blame for whatever went wrong, explains Newton, who is also president-elect of Black Psychiatrists Of America. Workplace and personal conflicts can also fuel dramatic events and reactions, which often manifest in the form of anger and/or addiction.
The Problem with Being the ‘Problem Solver’
This was a reality for Jennifer Jones, 45, who was fired from her position as director of community relations at a New York cooperative development in December 2006. Refusing the company’s settlement changed her status to a voluntary resignation, which prevented her from collecting unemployment.
I was angry and humiliated, says the married mother of two, who was told she had clinical depression. After eight years, all my efforts and programs I’d created all went down the tubes. Over the course of nearly two years, the formerly two-income family went into a financial tailspin. The couple depleted their savings and took their daughters, one in college, out of private schools. They traded in two cars for one and moved from their Princeton, New Jersey, home to a relatively small apartment in the New York City area to be closer to family. Feelings of disgrace because of the lack of viable employment opportunities and the stress of her family’s upheaval took a toll on Jones. She became a virtual recluse, sleeping constantly, overeating, and eventually ceasing most of the functions of daily living, including the care of her younger daughter. Her husband helped pick up the slack. With no history of mental illness, Jones was convinced the low feelings would recede over time. I was told to pick myself up and count my blessings,” she recalls. I’ve always been the go-to problem solver for my family. It was impossible to believe I couldn’t help myself.
Like Jones, some sufferers believe that they’re imagining the severity of symptoms and that eventually they will be able to pray or will the sadness or behavior away. Donna Holland Barnes Ph.D., president and co-founder of National Organization of People of Color Against Suicide, says, Lack of communication helps to deepen depression, because symptoms are misunderstood and therefore go untreated. Black men are less likely than women to seek help, Barnes adds. They are less likely to comply with treatment and less likely to stay in treatment if they start it.
Medication can both manage a depressive condition and cause other challenges, such as weight gain or impotence, explains Newton, who does not oppose the use of medication. Understandably, patients are reluctant to take [their medicine], which perpetuates the cycle. Akinduro is on medication, but it took three or four tries to find one that worked for him without side effects. Jones is reluctant to try it and prefers sessions with a therapist, which has worked for her, but in some cases psychotherapy is not enough.
The Physical Toll
Although many suffer in silence, the effects of depression are never felt in isolation. Aside from the variety of burdens it may place on the family of a sufferer, depression cost the U.S. about $83 billion because of decreased productivity and workplace absenteeism in 2000, the latest year for which numbers are available. There are other health costs as well. Depression has been linked to heart disease and stroke, which are major health concerns for African Americans. Changes in appetite and sleep patterns, root symptoms of depression, are linked to the hypothalamus, a small structure located at the base of the brain responsible for many basic functions such as sex drive and stress reaction. The hypothalamus also supports the function of the pituitary gland, which in turn regulates key hormones. Abnormalities of pituitary function are related to increased levels of the hormone cortisol, which is related to blood sugar imbalances, and to the hormone catecholamine, which is related to blood pressure changes. Depression causes impaired cognitive performance, lowered immunity, and inflammatory responses in the body.
The Process of Healing
Depression is treatable with the help of a qualified healthcare professional. Treatment includes talk therapy and the incorporation of antidepressants, depending on the severity of the condition. Akinduro, who is a board member of National Organization for People of Color Against Suicide, credits therapy, medication, and finally confronting his father with putting him on the road to recovery. It was very liberating to confront my past. In therapy I learned that it’s not a moral failing or scar on your character. Jones’ healing began when she saw a television interview with author Terrie Williams about her book, Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We’re Not Hurting (Simon & Schuster; $25). Today, Jones is executive director of the Stay Strong Foundation, a New York-based nonprofit that Williams co-founded offering mental health and mentoring programs. As we treat depressed individuals, we also have to treat the community in order to address the larger issues that are affecting our environment, advises Newton. Anything less is a Band-Aid.
Getting Help for Depression
Every year about 14 million Americans suffer from some type of depressive illness and according to several reports, blacks are particularly at risk. Here’s a list of resources for those at risk or battling a depressive disorder.
National Organization of People of Color Against Suicide works to increase suicide awareness within minority communities and seeks to educate individuals about prevention and intervention, as well as provide support services to families and communities impacted by depression and suicide.
The National Institute of Mental Health works to broaden understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through research and thereby facilitate prevention, recovery, and a cure.
Author Denise A. Campbell is the Founder and Creative