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What are alternatives to treat chronic depression besides medicine?

My stepmom is depressed and does not seem to tolerate medicine very well. She develops all sorts of side effects. She is currently on zoloft and zanax. She has developed tremors, is nauseous and is not sleeping. Plus, her stomach really hurts now. She has tried 3 different medicines and is getting more depressed.

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10 Responses to “What are alternatives to treat chronic depression besides medicine?”

  1. laureenn said :

    There’s multiple types of therapy she can try, but other than that and medicine, nothing really.

  2. Cassata said :

    Funny this question came up. I was researching that same question. I found some good info HERE.

  3. judith a. said :

    sorry to hear this, she can try chiniiese medcine or go on a really long vacation and talk to an therapist too.

  4. philadelphiaphishead said :

    Medicine is not always the best answer, especially for situations like depression where there are very successful and helpful alternatives. The reason so many people believe that medicine is their only option (and feel pressured to take medicine) is because pharmaceutical companies have the money to advertise their products on television and in magazines, while psychologists cannot usually afford to advertise their services. Psychotherapy is effective and can be a wonderful experience for someone with depression. While antidepressants are a quick-fix option, they do not solve longer term depression, unless someone plans to be on medicine for the rest of her life. I would suggest cognitive or cognitive-behavioral therapy, and look for a therapist who has a PhD and specializes in depression/cognitive therapy/cognitive-behavioral therapy. No one should feel pressured to take medicine for the rest of their lives, so try to help your mom find a therapist she feels comfortable with and you are sure is qualified for the specific problems your mom is dealing with. Remind her that she is not alone and there are many effective options. Good luck!

  5. angelguide said :

    Fish oil capsules.
    Research studies show that people who suffer from depression and other mental problems have one thing in common-their bodies are slightly but constantly in a state of inflammation.
    Fish oil has an anti-inflammatory effect.It is inexpensive,easily available and has no side effects.
    A nephew of mine has some mental illness and Fish oil has helped. Dont expect results overnight,try it.
    Also for the sleeplessness try 5HTP.I swear by it.It is a relaxant you can buy over the counter,it is worth trying.

  6. em T said :

    I ordered some videos and tapes from the Midwest Center for Anxiety and Depression and found them helpful.
    Exercise and a proper diet are important too – especially lay off sugar.
    What is causing the depression – did she suffer the loss of someone she loved? That requires time and perhaps counseling to heal. If it is an environmental factor like work stress, someone being cruel to her, or failing to achieve dreams, then she needs to make some changes in her life, to address those issues. But she may need to find a medicine that works, too, for a while. I tried four or five before I found the one that worked for me, but the medicine alone wasn’t enough, I had to make significant life changes, too. (Quit lousy job, moved out of abusive house, started having a social life.) Also, I learned to avoid the things that triggered sadness. I threw away any books, movies, gifts, pictures, or other things I owned that I found produced a negative emotional reaction when I looked at them.

  7. mother_of_a_princess said :

    She can try taking St. John’s Wort. Just make sure it has HYPERICIN in it. That is the part of the plant that helps with depression. It isn’t an overnight change, but after about 2-3 weeks, she will definitely notice a difference and so will everyone else. Make sure she takes 900mg per day. Also, exercising and getting enough rest can help with depression. I have problems going to sleep also and I foudn that starting to wind down about 2 hours before I go to sleep really helps. Also, taking a long warm bath. She can also try aromatherapy, such as pure lavendar or chamomile or a combination of both. I have heard that other anti-depressants can keep you awake, even though they are sometimes given to help people sleep. Some medications can counteract with each other and cause nasty side effects. If she isn’t happy with the outcome with her current doctor, she may want to consider going to another doctor for a 2nd opinion on what she should do to help with her depression. Take care and I wish your stepmother lots of luck!!!

  8. Duncan M said :
  9. Soul Doctor said :

    Homeopathic Remedies for Anxiety / Panic Attacks / Stress / Depression(Bereavment) / Mood Swings (Totally safe, without any side effects or complications of any sort) :-


    Sudden with restlessness and fear of death, Panic Attacks, Aconite 30X or 200X,1/2 hourly (3 Doses)

    Prolonged with periodic and panic attacks Arsenic Alb.200X, 4 hourly (3 Doses)

    With fainting spells; profuse sweating; worse in the morning Sulphur 30X or 200X 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Makes patient walk fast; due to anticipation Argentum Nit 200X, 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Worse lying in bed and closing the eyes Carbo Veg 30X or 200X, 4 hourly (6 Doses)

    Anxiety aggravated by upward or downward motion; going in an elevator; worse till 11 P.M, Borax 200X or 1M, 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Anxious about business even when seriously ill Bryonia Alba 200X 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Full of apprehensions in the evening Causticum 200X, 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Anxiety and fears in the evening with restlessness and palpitation Calcarea Carb.200X or 1M, 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Anxiety worse while lying still. Sad music ameliorates the complaints Manganum Acet 200X 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Anxiety due to fright, fear,exciting news; stage fright; worse while appearing for examination or interview etc Gelsemium 30X or 200X 3 hourly (6 Doses)

    Mood Swings, Anxiety due to grief or shock in the subconscious mind Ignatia 200X or 1M, 3 hourly (3 Doses)

    Anxiety; better after eating Anacardium Or 30X, 4 hourly.

    DEPRESSION & GRIEF(Bereavement) :-

    Severe shock due to sudden death of loved ones; restlessness, anxiety and fear Aconite 200X. 10 min (3 Doses)

    Prolonged mournings; cannot overcome the loss of loved ones and/or Mood Swings. Ignatia 1M or 10M, 6 hourly (3 Doses)

    When the grief is in the conscious mind; patient weeps; does not like sympathy Natrum Mur.200X or 1M, 6 hourly (3 Doses)

    For chronic grief and indignation Staphysagria 200X or 1M, weekly (3 Doses)

    Depression with suicidal thoughts feeling of worthlessness, Aurum Met 30X, three times a day half hour before meals.

    Take the remedy which is similar to your symptoms. No side effects or complications if taken as directed, please do not exceed the given dosage and under any circumstances do not try to mix any remedies and avoid Chocolates, Mints, Coffee, Red Meat, Alcoholic and Carbonated drinks, Spicy Rich Food while taking any Homeopathic remedies, and keep the medicines away from direct sunlight, heat strong smells and perfumes and do not store them in the fridge.
    Curing without any side effects or Complications Thats the Beauty of Homeopathic Medicine (Cures Par Excellence)

    Take Care and God Bless you.

  10. kanuk said :

    Sometimes having someone to talk to will help a person who is depressed, if the depression is caused by a situation that CAN be changed. if she’s unhappy about something, take the unhappiness away and the depression goes away too. Not all cases of depression are clinical ( caused by a chemical imbalance) sometimes it’s just plain old worry that causes a person to be overly sad and unhappy.
    She also may be taking too much medication, taking two medications that do the same thing might be causing the tremors. over medicating older people is a big problem these days. See if you can get your Step mom to talk to you or someone whom she trusts. Good luck


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