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Ending Mood Disorders Without Drugs

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Ending Mood Disorders Without Drugs

By Gracelyn Guyol, Natural Solutions

Over the past 50 years, psychiatric drugs have become the major tools for treating mental illness. The first tranquilizers, introduced in 1952, have been followed nearly every decade since by a new class of drugs, the latest being antidepressants. While drugs were a godsend compared to the standard (and now seemingly barbaric) therapies of the 1930s–induced insulin coma, electroshock, and lobotomy–their shortcomings and dangers have become increasingly clear.

Fifty percent of depressed and bipolar patients experience no improvement with antidepressants. Of those who find relief, half go off their “meds” because of the unbearable side effects: Psychiatric drugs often cause a 30- to 60-pound weight gain, 58 percent report some level of sexual dysfunction, 40 percent develop tics or muscle spasms from major tranquilizers, and significant numbers report increased agitation, depression, mania, or suicidal urges. Other unadvertised, potential dangers include increased risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, invasive ovarian cancer, and lung and bladder cancers; doubled risk of heart attack; elevated risk for developing Type 2 diabetes; and, in children, increased mania, suicide, and stunted or delayed growth.

And yet in the face of this prescription onslaught, mounting evidence indicates that depression, bipolar, and other mood disorders are caused by a combination of genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors. While there’s not much anyone can do to alter the genes they’ve inherited, holistic approaches to the other two factors can lead to safer ways of managing these conditions.

Next: Are there underlying causes?

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Natural Solutions: Vibrant Health, Balanced Living offers its readers the latest news on health conditions, herbs and supplements, natural beauty products, healing foods and conscious living.

34 comments

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11:27AM PST on Jan 3, 2013

Thank you.

11:51AM PDT on Aug 21, 2010

interesting

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9:58PM PDT on Jul 13, 2010

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9:40PM PDT on Apr 24, 2010

I'm a nurse, and I believe that sometimes medications can help, but not for long term. If one is aware of their moods, that's half the battle. Sometimes, everyday positive activities can boost your mood.

2:24PM PST on Dec 26, 2009

In your statement, "Fifty percent of depressed and bipolar patients experience no improvement with antidepressants" you failed to cite your resource. In fact there is only one citation throughout the article. When recommending a therapy citations should prevail.

10:40AM PDT on Jul 1, 2009

PLEASE be conscious of what you are doing when you agree to take antidepressants! I have been on them for 25 years, not because I need them (but who knows?) but because I cannot get off them! I have tried to taper down sloly and I still cannot get rid of the last 5mg's or so. They screw up your brain's ability to make it's own neurotransmitters.
Don't get stuck on the antidepressant merry go round! Try natural remedies first. Excecise is a really good way to shrug off depression! If you need them, take them to be sure. They have been known to save lives when depression gets so bad you don't want to live anymore. But short of that, I say avoid them if you possibly can!

8:44PM PDT on Jun 14, 2009

thanks...you...
Kabin
Konteyner

8:29AM PDT on Jun 4, 2009

I have had problems with depression mostly from family problems and trying to get them to do what they should do for themselves. I don't like useing Pharmisuitical drugs but have found the Youngevity Products D-Stress and Womens Hormonal balancer keep me where I can not go into a crying ljag or get really angry.Tehir full of vitamin D and Natural herbs that help.

11:39AM PDT on May 24, 2009

The issue for me is that all "mental illness" is being treated as one disease. There are many types of serious depression and anxiety; however, we are just coming out of the ice age as a culture in terms of understanding the complexities of the mind. While there are abuses of medications, that does not mean we must discount the many people who have been literally saved from suicide by these medicines. That does not mean that if you have a mood swing people must run out to get drugs. Trust me, people who know what real depression/anxiety/etc. is would be grateful for a simple mood swing. I appreciate the recommendations of this article for general healthy living, but "eat right, exercise 5 times a week" is something that someone facing mental illness has heard and probably follows as much if not more than others. While I take as little as is necessary, medicine is what allows me to live a healthy and active lifestyle. It's not the mind-numbing, personality altering pill of teh past. We need to move on from our cultural naivity of mental illnesses.

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