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Alternatives to Depression Meds?
October 21, 2005
4:59 pm
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Longstreet
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My therapist suggested I might benefit from meds to relieve my depression and panic attacks from my recent breakup. I am reluctant to go on prescription meds. Is there anything out there, herbal that can help me? She said that St. John's Wort can be unreliable and even dangerous if overtaken. I would rather go natural than deal w/prescription meds.
Thanks!

October 21, 2005
5:02 pm
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Anonymous
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Sam E is said to help - my brother swears by it...there is something else too, but I forget what he said - oh, OMEGA-3's - he takes high concentrates of them.

MSM is another one I have heard of.

find an established and well known homeopathic store, natural food store - and see if they have a nutritionist/herbalist on staff - they can usually give you ideas - and usually includes taking an inventory of what you eat and drink - since that can point to other defficienceies you may not be aware of.

I don't know about panic attacks, but I saw a post here about some kind of drop you put under your tongue that calms the nerves - and I forget what they call it, but others here know about it.

October 21, 2005
5:21 pm
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mamabear
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Something I had heard over and over but always kind of rolled my eyes about was exercise. I started exercising for time to myself and for the health benefits (my family has very extensive health problems on either side and my doctor advised me to exercise for my health) and I was less depressed than I had ever been. Then a few months ago I quit going to the gym, decided to save a few bucks and try walking/biking ect. That never happened. Once I got out of my routine, I never felt like exercising anymore. I can't say that it was a next day dramatic effect, but weeks later I was back in a major slump and considering the causes. I realized that I DID FEEL A LOT BETTER when exercising.

So there must be truth in the exercise fights depression story. I am trying to get motivated to start up again.

Also, have you been depressed before, or is depression new to you? Medicine will not fix the situation, but it may help it if you have an actual chemical need/imbalance.

If you NEED the medicine, do not feel bad about taking it, but if you would rather not, then respect your instincts and look for non-medicinal ways to cheer yourself up. Look to the root of the panic attacks and depression rather than trying to ease the symptoms.

Good luck, we are here for you if you need support and a listening ear.

Mamabear

October 22, 2005
12:19 am
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helpplease
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i'd been told time and time again by doctors that i would benefit greatly from an antidepressant but i resisted it for a long long time. it didn't seem right to me. so i asked what you asked: what are some natural remedies? he said, don't drink, get out in the sun as much as you can, help the needy and finally -- masturbate. i also noticed that i would get crazy depressed right before my period. i googled pms and i got some really great pointers on diets and vitamins. the gist of it is cut back on salt, alcohol and caffeine. it works like a charm.

October 22, 2005
12:22 am
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helpplease
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i wanted to add that i did finally go on zoloft a couple of weeks ago because i was desperately depressed to the point that i could not stop crying -- for about two months, i kept holing myself up in my house and basically felt like my life was falling apart. they say it takes 4-6 weeks to take effect so i don't think i'm feeling anything yet. but i do feel better. also, yes, exercise as much as possible.

October 22, 2005
12:27 am
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sdesigns
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Ah, helpplease. Masturbate! That ticked me. Anything is worth a try. And how natural. 'Cept for me, if I'm depressed I don't even want to do that.

When I was last depressed, I forgot that I had taken meds before. When I remembered, I toddled on down to the doctor and got a prescription for Paxil and Xanax. At least the Xanax made me silly- I called them my happy pills. I could at least laugh again, even if it was over stupid stuff.

October 22, 2005
12:38 am
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Longstreet
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thanks everyone for your suggestions. I am going to definitely eat healthier, since my diet consists of mainly just what you said, salt, caffeine, but I don't drink. I am just sooo depressed and can't seem to get over the shock and despair of my g/f breaking up w/me. I feel like the pain will never, ever end. I am in counseling and I know it takes time, but I feel like every hour has 100 minutes in it and I am so sad. Thanks for the useful and natural recommendations.

October 22, 2005
7:51 am
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helpplease
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yes, ls, diet and exercise alone makes a big difference. how long have you been broken up? the pain is a killer. i just went through it and am slowly getting better. literally, thursday was the first time in two months that i didn't cry. that's a lot of sadness. but the last several days have been so calm..my point is amazingly it does go away. you'll never think that because of the way you feel right now but it's true...time heals. my best to you...hp

October 22, 2005
9:18 am
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Longstreet
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Hi HP, it's been about a month and the pain is overwhelming. I don't cry, I just feel lost, despair and brokenhearted. She said she loved me and would always be there, then she dumped me without a look back. It's hard to realize that someone I loved and trusted, turned out not to be the person I thought they said they were. I don't ever feel like I can love anyone again or trust them. I am praying that time will heal this. I honestly don't think I've ever been in this much emotional pain.

October 22, 2005
7:08 pm
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helpplease
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hi ls, i know the pain you're going through. you should read some of my threads from last week. the despair i felt was so strong and overwhelming i would have done anything to end it...and well, i went to church, i prayed like hell. it seemed like nothing would make it better. it's horrible. there's no question about it. it's not a good place to be. you don't think you are ever going to get over it. the pain of loving someone and not feeling reciprocated is unlike any other pain. i feel you. honestly, a lot of people on this website helped give me some perspective. someone told me i was taking the breakup too personally. someone else told me to go to a coda meeting and get some of the melody beattie codependence books. someone else told me to try to keep my mind busy. it's hard to keep your mind busy when it automatically and for me, obsessively, kept thinking about the breakup. but here's the deal...staying busy slowly helps you heal. you talk to people and you realize that the world is filled with heartbreak. it's also filled with wonderful, deep people. once you start to heal, you'll discover amazing people out there who will touch you and for whom you'll feel much love. connecting with other souls is a wonderful thing...seek other people. and be loving and gentle with yourself. don't be hard on yourself for feeling this way because it will only make it worse for you. with pain you grow and you'll come out of this and gain perspective. the coda meeting taught me a lot about control. i think what hurts so much about a breakup is that there's little control you have over it and hence the despair. but in life you have very little control and the more you try to control the uncontrollable the more despair you'll feel. i think you'll be wonderful soon. know that you are not alone and that you are wonderful right now. your worth and loveableness does not depend on this other person. much love to you. hp

October 23, 2005
12:27 am
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Longstreet
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Thank you so much HP. It honestly feels like someone took a hot poker and sliced through my heart. I don't know if I've ever felt this much pain or loss. It feels like I will never, ever be able to love again or trust again. My ex swore she loved me but in the end, she didn't. She didn't want to work on her issues and dumped me instead. So much for all the love she promised me and the forever she promised me. I miss what I thought were the good times, when she was lucid, encouraging, supportive and loving. But on the flip side she was demanding, possessive and somewhat paranoid. I miss being in love, I miss her beauty and her beautiful body. No one compares to her in my heart right now. I'm afraid I will never get over it. I pray, try to stay busy and every single minute of the day is a struggle not to sink into despair and loneliness over losing her. I still think I am a good person, I just don't know how she could throw me away like that. It's really hard to have good self esteem when someone you loved throws you away. Thank you for your encouraging words HP, I appreciate your kindness so very much.

October 23, 2005
10:01 am
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helpplease
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yeah, ls, i went through the same thing. even worse, i kept thinking he'd gone with someone else. That was making me absolutely crazy: to think that he could be loving someone else that wasn't me. but you know...he hasn't come back and i can't keep punishing myself about this. i'm a really great person and we had some troubles. the reality is that if we hadn't had troubles we'd probably still be together. there is no doubt that the pain is like nothing else in the world though. i have no idea if taking meds has helped me. i'm starting my fourth week of them right now. i do feel calmer and not as desperate and obsessive. but you should reach out to people...there was a whole week where i was literally screaming inside my head, stop it!!! don't think about it anymore!! it was like i could feel it seeping into my brain, those dreadful thoughts. and i just had to do what i had to do to keep them from coming in. you'll be okay, trust me. if i'm getting over this dreadful breakup, you will too!! if you were around, i'd take you out for a walk or a coffee or something. be well, love, hp.

October 23, 2005
10:18 am
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Rasputin
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Hi Longstreet,

- Vitamins are very good for depression, in particular Vitamin B Complex, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12.

- Also the Sun is great for depression, and exercises are great - both indoors and outdoors. I ply Callanetics indoors and I can feel destressed right after the work out.

- Chocolate is very antidepressant and listening to your favorite music are both very uplifting.

- Doing voluntary and uncoditional works: by helping others uncondtionally, giving away stuff and things we do not need or use any more. I volunteered and still do volunteer a lot. It really gave me so much joy and satisfaction like no other thing can give to me!!!

All the best! ~Ras~

October 23, 2005
11:23 am
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exoticflower
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Folic acid is actually a great vitamain to take for depression, it helps your body to produce the happy chamicals and endorphines a bit more, all on its own. Also, Niacine has been known to help with the physical symptoms of anxiety and depression, sluggishness, tense muscles, that pressure behind the eyes...these where suggested by my best friend to me some time ago, and it truly has helped a lot. Also, women can benefit a lot from a on a day prenatle vitamain in hard times, they have a bit more vitamain c, folait, b12, the good things womens health really needs an extra jolt of when our emotions and hormones togeather are doing a number on us--I still take mine from my pregnancy nearly two years ago for pms, as well as for hightly emotional times such as the week daughter was teething, and when she started to ween herself a lot and my hormones went out of whack.

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