There are plenty of medications out there which help fight depression and anxiety, which can be prescribed by your doctor. They alter the production of serotonin in your brain, which impacts your brain’s ability to stop depression and find hope around you. In the right circumstances, they are quite beneficial.
While there are some who respond negatively to antidepressants, and have other neurological issues, there are many who respond quite well to them. In my son’s genetic syndrome, our children frequently suffer from depression and other behavioral issues, so antidepressants can be effective, along with other medications. Yet, for many, rushing into antidepressants can be a quick-fix that doesn’t quite fit the circumstances. The effects of such strong drugs on children is really quite unknown.
Whether special needs or typical, there are some alternatives that do work in mild to moderate depression, and are supported by many physicians as beneficial. Plants and healthy oils actually come from God’s created garden, and can match our bodies better than synthetics, so the information alone is worth considering.
Ways to treat depression naturally
Fish oil contains properties to help our bodies naturally produce and maintain serotonin in the brain. Serotonin production is the main purpose of many prescription anti-depressants. We have used this with great success in our family at doses from 1,000 mg to 4,000 mg. Start small and increase as needed. You will know you reached your ceiling if the capsules create a generally upset stomach.
St. John’s Wort
This is the most common herb used for depression and is often recommended by general doctors as a natural remedy for depression. Studies have shown it to be effective for moderate depression. St. John’s also helps to reduce anxiety and depression. It works against insomnia, injuries involving the nerves, muscle strain, cramps, bruising and is also a natural sun protection.
Well-known for providing a sense of calm and peace, chamomile helps with insomnia, colds, nervousness and tension. It works well for gas and stomach ache, as well as sore muscles and rash.
Although not quite as common in the grocery store, this herb does calm and soothe, especially in children. It reduces fevers and aids the body with the cold or flu. It also boosts the immune system with any viruses.
I have used this root powder with mixed results. The root is ground into a powder, and is frequently found in capsules. Valerian eases anxiety and also helps create drowsiness. I have used it frequently for sleep with my special needs son. It is also generally known to ease menstrual cramps. Other general uses for Valerian is that it aids in intestinal upset, gas, and coughs.
You may notice that each herb has unique properties, and may or may not fit your needs. I encourage you to read and research each herb that seems to fit your needs, and choose the best alternative. Each person or child has a unique make-up that fits their needs. These choices are all fairly accessible, and can even be purchased in tea form at your local grocery store, in most cases.