Stress anxiety depression – all conditions we face increasingly in our modern world. Natural medicine is very well equipped to both treat causes and soothe symptoms.
We all feel stressed at times. Stress is something we all live with on a day-to-day basis and, in small amounts, is actually beneficial – we wouldn’t get much done without a little of it. However, at times we may be exposed to unrelenting long-term stress, such as when we experience the death of a loved one, or a divorce, miscarriage, or loss of a job and financial security. Chronic stress can leave us feeling so powerless and out of control that we may develop chronic anxiety or even depression.
It is natural to feel anxious at times. Chronic anxiety is a condition characterised by feelings of worry and fear that present without any obvious cause, or persist after the original stressful situation has passed. Symptoms may include:
• panic attacks
• shortness of breath
• heavy sweating
• heart palpitations
This is a mental disturbance often characterised by overwhelming feelings of hopelessness, helplessness and sadness. Symptoms may include:
• feelings of sadness and hopelessness
• insomnia or excessive sleeping
• lethargy and fatigue
• irritability, frustration and anger
• poor concentration and inability to make decisions
• pronounced changes in appetite leading to weight gain or weight loss
• recurrent thoughts of death or suicide
• loss of libido
Depression, anxiety and panic attacks are not a sign of weakness. Really they are signs of having tried to remain strong for too long. One in three people will experience some of these symptoms at some point in their lives. Counselling helps at such times.
Conventional medicine’s first-line treatments for these conditions are antidepressants and/or sleeping tablets, both of which can create dependency and have side-effects.
The naturopathic approach is more holistic: diet, exercise and lifestyle strategies are critical; and treatment programs aimed at reducing toxicity and inflammation in the body, while supporting the adrenals and neurotransmitter production. Even the most simple interventions like a good multivitamin, fish oil and magnesium supplements, and a probiotic can make a big difference.
It does not have to be an either or choice. If need be your naturopathic treatments can support you while, with your doctor’s agreement, you gently wean off your pharmaceutical drugs.
Dark nights of the soul can seem like a tunnel with no light at the end. However, everything is transitory; this period will pass and you will very likely emerge a stronger, more resilient and compassionate version of yourself.
I can’t thank Cath enough for her support and professionalism. I felt utterly dreadful when I walked through her door ten weeks ago. But now I feel like a new woman! I would highly recommend her to any pending client.