I’ve struggled with anxiety, depression, panic attacks and anger issues all of my life. For seven years I took the SSRI anti-depressant Paxil (Paroxetine). When I weaned myself off from it several months, ago, I knew I would need some help coping. I turned to homeopathic remedies, herbal supplements to manage my anxiety and depression. Here is my herbal and homeopathic first aid kit for treating depression.
–Emotional Health self help literature, support groups and mental health exercises: The most important tools in my first aid kit are not taken orally. They are what I call my “mental health exercises”. No pill, whether chemical or herbal can have much impact against depression and anxiety, until the sufferer begins to address the underlying causes of the anxiety and depression. There several tools that can be used in mental health exercises:
–Read psychology, self-help and emotional health literature (see my recommended reading for mental health). Take notes. Write in the margins. Meditate on what you read.
–Join a 12-Step program. Get counseling. Can’t afford it? Can’t fit a meeting into the schedule? Try an online support group like Daily Strength.
–Keep a journal (not a diary, a reflective meditation journal). Write what you feel. Track your moods. Track the triggers for panic attacks and depressive episodes.
–My blogs Emotional Health Help and Health Help 4u have lots more mental health exercises and tips.
–Physical exercise, preferably meditation, centering, calming exercises like yoga and Tai Chi
–Vitamin Supplements – The best way to get vitamins and minerals is through diet and proper nutrition. Some vitamins and minerals are difficult to get in sufficient quantities through diet. That is when supplements are recommended.
–Vitamin B 100 (reduces feelings of stress): Sublingual (under the tongue) drops or dietary supplements. Choose the B 100 or B 50 supplements over the B stress support formulas. Stress support contains on 100% RDA of B. B 100 contains 100 mgs of niacin (B3), riboflavin (B2), thiamine (B1), pantothenic acid (B5), pyrodoxine (B6), biotin (B8) folic acid (B9) and cyanocobalamin (B12).
–Ester C or effervescent dissolving vitamin C (boost immunity and energy): Emergen-C is my preferred brand.
–St. John’s Wort (mood support): This inexpensive herbal supplement is readily available in grocery stores. St. John’s Wort
–Kava Kava (elevates mood, promotes feelings of well-being)
–Panax Ginseng (improves memory and concentration, promotes well-being, tonic effects)
–Valerian Root (promotes rest and sleep)
–Skullcap (pain reliever, anti-inflammatory, sedative, tonic)
–Homeopathic and Flower Essence Treatments:
–Bach’s Rescue Remedy (mood support, promotes feelings of well-being, reduces feelings of anxiety)
This emotional “health first aid kit” has enabled me to live free of anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs.