Depression and antidepressants


Depression is an abnormal emotional state characterized by exaggerated feelings of sadness, melancholy, worthlessness, emptiness, and hopelessness that are inappropriate and out of proportion to reality. Depression is different than normal sadness because it prevents the patient from functioning normally in their daily life. Other signs of depression include a lack of energy or initiative (psychomotor retardation), agitation, withdrawal from social contact, insomnia, decreased appetite and/or a vegetative state.

Antidepressants constitute the most common treatment against depression, but recent studies in the US show that they might actually not work in tackling depression. Selective publication of the outcomes of clinical trials can lead to unrealistic estimates of drug effectiveness and alter the apparent risk–benefit ratio, suggest the studies (The New England Journal of Medicine).

The genuine cause of depression is not known, but it is believed to be caused by a combination of biological, psychological, and social factors, such as your lifestyle choices, relationships, genetics. However, certain risk factors make you more vulnerable to depression....

Complementary and alternative medicine practitioners believe the mind and body must be in harmony for you to stay healthy. Mind-body techniques that may be tried to ease depression symptoms include: acupuncture, yoga, meditation, guided imagery, massage therapy.

It is recommended that people suffering from depression try a variety of other things, such as:

(1) Checking for hypothyroidism. This unrecognized epidemic is a leading cause of depression.
(2) Taking adequate B12 (1,000 micrograms, or mcg, a day), B6 (25 mg) and folic acid (800 mcg). These vitamins are critical for metabolizing homocysteine, which can play a factor in depression.
(3) Getting checked for mercury. Heavy metal toxicity has been correlated with depression and other mood and neurological problems.
(4) Taking vitamin D. Deficiency in this essential vitamin can lead to depression
(5) Taking omega-3 fats. Your brain is made of up this fat, and deficiency can lead to a host of problems.
(6) Exercising vigorously five times a week for 30 minutes. This increases levels of natural antidepressants in your brain....