One of every four people suffers from the ill effects of emotional distress in Canada and there are many therapeutic frameworks that cannot manage the ascent of stress and state of mind issues like depression.
Naturopathic specialists claim that the body and the psyche are connected. Also known as the “Gut-Brain Connection” is the tight link between the stomach and disposition. A whole field named “psychoneuroimmunology” connects despondency to aggravation in the body and mind.
It may be that we have been treating depression wrongly.
Psychological wellness conditions are treated separately from the rest of the body. In standard medicine melancholy is considered as a mind synthetic lopsidedness. It is considered that the lack of “upbeat” chemicals, located in the cerebrum and similar to dopamine and serotonin, affect inclination and must be treated with antidepressants. Many medications for nervousness and depression accept the low-serotonin hypothesis of depression, which explains that sadness appears because of the lowered creation of some neurotransmitters in the mind, like serotonin, and therefore drugs are prescribed to falsely up the level of neurotransmitters. Although, we understand that certain energizer drugs like serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs and SNRIs) in most cases (40-60% of them) are more effective than placebo, it is still not fully understood why these drugs have an effect.
Even when patients start taking these medications, it takes around three weeks for any noticeable changes to the mind state to take place, which makes us believe that these medications might not actually expand the neurotransmitter levels. Despite the lack of solid evidence that these drugs re-establish the regular concoction in the brain, the pharmaceuticals still promote them as such.
The Neuroscience and Behavioural Reviews published a paper discrediting the low-serotonin hypothesis of depression, explaining that the changes that happen on an SSRI prescription might be due to the body fighting the medication instead of the medication helping the body, which will explain why people tend to feel worse when starting on these medications. The paper states that this is a step back in treating depression.
How depression could be treated naturally
It is crucial to find a natural way to enhance our brains and bodies and deal with stress and irritation.
As emotional human beings, it is natural that we sometimes feel tension and sadness when dealing with daily doings. This is not necessarily a sign of a flaw and we should start talking more openly about mental health and what it entails.
We should always seek an expert who will not only see us as a numbered case, but a person with a body and a mind, both equally important, and will help us find our element.
When dealing with sadness and depression there are several recommended steps and techniques, as outlined below.
- Heal the gut
Science started referring to the stomach related frame work as the “second cerebrum”, because it is responsible for the Enteric Nervous System, a large number of nerve cells that control stomach capacity. Studies have shown that aggravation to the stomach related framework can trigger a lot of changes to the temperament. Since 30-40% of all people experience stomach related side effects like swelling, GERD, tooting, IBS, clogging this association is crucial. A connection between the brain and the gut has been discovered by naturopathic medicine which is associated with treating stomach issues by recommending quality probiotics and recognizing and eliminating sustenance sensitivities.
- Essential supplements
The chances are low but, if the body doesn’t have the elements for building hormones and neurotransmitters, it won’t create them. Even though SSRI medicine maintains high mind serotonin levels, it is likely to exhaust the minerals and vitamins that deliver serotonin. Therefore, it is vital to take supplements of the B vitamins, magnesium, zinc and to make sure there is sufficient protein intake. Some sources claim that 70-80% of the population has a magnesium deficiency and, since magnesium is essential for a range of hormones and neurotransmitters, this can result in a wide variety of health issues.
- Fish oil
A 2014 study claimed that fish oils can be used to treat low states of mind and even severe depression, since the unsaturated fats EPA and DHA it contains are needed by the cerebrum to function properly, actually taking an EPA supplement has proved successful in treating sorrow. In addition, fish oil is beneficial for low-levels of inflammation, which has been linked to despondency. It is important to consult an authorized naturopathic professional and find the right proportion of EPA and DHA and the right, high-quality brand.
- Heal the adrenals
Developmental science has indicated that dejection could actually be a way of coping with external factors to survive and to keep our capacity to pass on qualities. Considering that about 70% of people today are under stress, it comes as no surprise that there is a rise in the number of psychological wellbeing issues, and that this kind of delayed, perpetual anxiety that they call ‘adrenal weakness’ manifests in numerous ways.
Such adrenal exhaustion is characterized by an abnormal amount of delayed mental, emotional and physical anxiety with symptoms including apathy, depression, sleep disorders, alienation and lack of pleasure in previously loved activities. There are also signs such as changes to rest patterns, hunger, weight and energy levels, and these are noted in the vast majority of people.
It is important, therefore, to raise awareness and to implement stress reduction strategies, herbs and natural remedies, and lifestyle and diet changes as a way of dealing with the stress accompanying everyday life, trying out different methods until there is an improvement in psychological wellness.
- The mind-body solution
This involves working with the power of our bodies’ own recuperating capacity to eliminate obstructions to the natural stream of energy all through our bodies. This is usually done with homeopathy, acupuncture and meditation techniques. Although some dismiss these as pseudoscientific, there is a growing body of research that supports these naturopathic solutions. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary solutions stated that treating depression with acupuncture was as viable as treating it with medicine and showed results after one and a half month. This mind-body solution works by making use of our feelings, thoughts and physical sensations to raise awareness of our bodies and equipping us to handle stress.
- Professional counselling
This is the preferred treatment for depression and other psychological disorders and, together with prescriptions, is much better than just drugs alone. There is a wide assortment of proven psychotherapy models and styles and the first step to a successful relationship is to find someone that you trust and can feel comfortable with.
Subjective behavioural therapy (CBT) is one of the basic helpful modalities for treating depression and involves examining and changing deeply rooted thoughts, feelings and practices that could be contributing to the emotional disorder. Another popular one is ‘motivational interviewing’, which enables patients to look at and modify addictive patterns.
More and more people are turning to the Buddhist teachings regarding reflection as a way of handling stress and preventing and addressing depression. Some studies have recently shown that MBCT (Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy) could be just as effective as pharmaceutical treatments for mild to severe depression. This method involves searching inside, non-judgementally, and being aware of all the thoughts, feelings and physical sensations of the body, and thus developing mindfulness, kindness and empathy.
One of the authors of MBCT, Jon Kabat-Zinn, indicates that the mindfulness that comes from consciously focusing on and recognizing your thoughts and sensations, without judging, at the moment. This enables you to better appreciate and understand your emotions without being overwhelmed by negative feelings and convictions.
So, if you or anyone you are close to, is experiencing an emotional disorder, it is critical to be aware of the choices available. Naturopathic treatments are a good first choice for those who have been going through a temporary difficulty, a preventive measure for those having trouble managing anxiety, and a great supplement to medication that people take who have been suffering a psychological well-being issue for a longer time. I have worked with children, young people, adults, pregnant and post-birth women and patients dealing with addictions, and welcome opportunities to advise on natural treatments.