Gold Coast Naturopath: Natural treatments for mood disorders part one

19 May 2015 5:05 PMLicensee Person Gold Coast Naturopath: Natural treatments for mood disorders part one

Part one of a three part series into natural treatments for mood disorders. This post focuses on natural treatments for anxiety.

Over the next three blog posts I have decided to focus on natural treatments for mood disorders, specifically looking at:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Mental Health

Even with these three categories there is so much more behind mood disorders. In my many years of practise this is becoming more and more of a commoninality amongst clients.

Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness or unease about something with an uncertain outcome.  

Anxiety can and often will affect how we feel and behave, manifesting as real physical symptoms; including heart palpitations, shortness of breath, not being able to concentrate or focus on the task at hand; just to name a few.  

Often a distress is felt caused by fear of something that “might” happen; not necessarily will happen.

Insomnia is a symptom commonly seen in anxiety. 

This can vary from an inability to fall asleep or waking on and off during the night and in some cases waking and not being able to fall back asleep as thoughts take over and your brain activity hightens.

Many people will take anti-anxiety medications (such as vallium), anti-depressants and sleeping tables; but there are other alternatives. There are a few little handy hints to keep in mind (calm the mind) with anxiety such as:

  • Break the thought process – get your mind off the problem, it’s not going anywhere, but you can. Take a walk, find something to laugh about, listen to your favourite song – find something to break that obsessive thought process.
  • Avoid Caffeine – caffeine is a stimulant that increases adrenaline in the body; not a good thing when you are trying to relax your body. This includes coke, coffee and even chocolate.
  • Don’t eat large meals – by eating smaller meals more frequently this will help stabilise your blood sugar levels; hence stabilizing your mood. Protein is a good food to be eaten with every meal as it is broken down slowly– Eg eggs, almonds, tuna.
  • Breathe – Consciously lengthen your breath. Short shallow breathes with worsen the anxiety as your head starts to feel dizzy.
  • Positive affirmations – you don’t need to say these over and over in your head but pick a few that make you feel good. Reaffirm-ations they should be called.
  • Phone a friend – talk to family and friends about how you feel. Even a light hearted chat to your hairdresser or massage therapist can make you feel better. Plus a massage – makes everyone feel better.
  • Aromatherapy – the sense of smell bypasses the cognitive brain (the worry part). Use an oil burner with some therapeutic essential oils, or even a fragrant candle that you love the smell of.
  • Herbal Medicine – the best for last.

Herbal medicine, natural neurotransmitters and vitamins can all assist with calming a heightened nervous system. 

Natural therapies have come so far in the treatment of anxiety; however it shouldn’t be looked at lightly. Just because it’s good for you doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Although it may be natural; herbs can affect any medications you might be on. Please consult your naturopath before taking anything.

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