Depression and alternative treatments

Posted by Gary, Volunteer Mentor @gman007, Jan 18, 2018

I am certain this has been discussed previously, but thought I would jump start a discussion to see what I can learn. I suffer from clinical depression and mine is certainly affected by seasons and the immediate aftermath of the holidays and combination of many short, cloudy days are my worst season. It became obvious with my last visit to my psychiatrist that it was time for me to change providers. The fact of the matter in my area is that it is very easy to get an appointment with a bad Psych and a very long wait to see a good one. I was a bit discouraged that I thought there was help out there, but that I may not be able to access it for several months, so…I have started reading and practicing Mindfulness: An eight week plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World by Mark Williams and Danny Penman. If you had known me 15 years ago you would have heard me compare meditation to voodoo, probably unfavorably. I was not impressed by any claims made toward alternative treatment for anything. I have always imagined the worst of every situation and my perception and imagination would have produced Armageddon years ago. My thinking was that even if mindfulness did not have a positive effect on my depression, it may help my near and long-term outlook. I am only one week in, but I can already see times where my reaction to something that may have made me more depressed have not had that effect at all. I don’t know if everyone else will have the same experience, but it is something that those of who have battled this debilitating disease can do proactively that does not include a new medicine. Please do not start this and stop taking any antidepressant or other anxiety medication before discussing with your doctor – for me, I see it as a complimentary approach to my disease.

A peek at my alternative treatment-it helps my eyes.

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@hopeful33250

A number of us looked at this last year, but since we are looking at Alternative Treatments for Depression, I wanted to take another look at a program developed by Dr. Amit Sood, entitled Happiness a One Week Journey. Probably many of you are familiar with Dr. Amit Sood, a psychiatrist at Mayo. This is a free online program that addresses the issue of happiness. Here is what Dr. Sood says about this program.

Dear friends,

You and I face one common enemy – suffering. Pain, physical or emotional, when it becomes unbearable, is experienced as suffering. Pain is unavoidable, but suffering is optional. My goal is to help you find a path so you can bypass suffering in this life. One reward of traversing that journey is finding greater happiness.

Happiness is a habit. Some of us are innately happy. But most others have to choose. We often, however, don’t realize we have that choice. We also don’t know how to exercise that choice. As a result, we push happiness away. Let that not happen to you.

Join me, if you wish, to spend the next week of your life, choosing greater happiness. Each day, you’ll be guided to a practice that can make you happier. To enroll, you’ll need to register with your name and email address to connect with us for the next week. Select ‘Happiness: A One Week Journey,’ below for more information.

Take care.
Amit

Here is the website where you can sign up and join me on this journey: http://stressfree.org/happiness/

If you haven’t read through this yet, please do so. Dr. Sood has some very practical suggestions.

Teresa

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@desperada This Dr. Sood has Youtube bits and Tedtalks. Might want to check him out.

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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Hi, @gman007 – you mentioned tapping a while back as an alternative treatment for depression. Did you end up trying it?

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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@lisalucier I know you are addressing @gman007 as to the tapping. I decided to try it again and it seemed to increase my anxiety. I may have been doing something wrong or was in an anxious state I was unaware of at the time. I do know it has helped others.
I too would be interested if any of the other connect folks have tried thus.
Playing with my pencils helps me. Tagging on a recent drawing of the animals I love so much. When drawing it is like petting them and I can at times smell their sweet smell and feel their soft coats.

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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@parus

Your artwork totally amazes me! You are able to capture the essence of life in each portrait whether human, plant, or animal. I so appreciate your sharing them with us. You are also a poet in your writing, as above. I'm sure if we met we would become fast friends. I'm happy to "know" you on Connect.

I wanted to let you know that I signed up for oil painting and water color classes at the local senior center. I figured it will be good for me to get started in the classes and reacquaint myself with the media. I need to find my "viewpoint" in artistic expression. It's been a long long time since I've worked on my art. I've also signed up for a yoga class. I've missed not having friends in my new home and it's been 2 years now. A Senior Center catalog arrived in the mail, and had so many interesting opportunities to meet others, even just for coffee each day, that I decided to give it a try. I'm looking forward to starting all this tomorrow.

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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@parus Hi there. I used to go a Tai Chi class several times a week. Many of the members in it do suffer from chronic illnesses and swear rhat it helped them. We would begin each class with 'tapping'. It is said that is done to wake up your bone marrow, where new red blood cells are made. Then, we would cultivate the energy around us and in us to fortify our 'chi' which is our life force. I could def feel the collective energy amoung us. And I did feel better for it. If you get a chance to participate in a group, you might consider it. Our group is free and usually in the park. But, I want to add that you do not need to be in a group to do it. You can probably find it on Youtube and learn to do it.

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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Good morning!

I took a look at a couple of Tapping videos on Youtube. Here are the links, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRfLTQjJhp0 and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5hYE0Wt4Sxs. The first one deals with stress and the second link deals with pain relief. The videos are just a few minutes long and look interesting.

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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@hopeful33250 Can usually count on you for info. Will check these out as I do think it will help. I am now doing a combination of Tai Chi and Yoga which does help with toning and no high impact…Must take care of my sageful body/mind. I must have made a new word-I am known for such as I oft talk dyslexic. Good for laughs!!!

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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@lisalucier
Lisa,
I could not remember discussing tapping, but I did remember someone doing so. Teresa posted a couple of links to youtube videos on the subject. I have not tried this, so I can't comment.
Peace, Gary

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@lafaye

Thank you for your post I live with depression and it’s taken a toll I hear voices and have hallucinations that is what depresses me too I went to mindful classes I didn’t find it too helpful meditation is totally out I’m sad to say
Because the voices are constantly talking and it’s hard to concentrate the only relief I get from them is when I sleep
Then I have nightmares. All that could be why I’m depressed I don’t know. You are right about having to change doctors some being good some being crap I have had both.

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@parus Yes, I do like the new word, sageful! Creativity at it's best!

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@windwalker

@parus Hi there. I used to go a Tai Chi class several times a week. Many of the members in it do suffer from chronic illnesses and swear rhat it helped them. We would begin each class with 'tapping'. It is said that is done to wake up your bone marrow, where new red blood cells are made. Then, we would cultivate the energy around us and in us to fortify our 'chi' which is our life force. I could def feel the collective energy amoung us. And I did feel better for it. If you get a chance to participate in a group, you might consider it. Our group is free and usually in the park. But, I want to add that you do not need to be in a group to do it. You can probably find it on Youtube and learn to do it.

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@windwalker I have been a student of Yang Style, Shanghai long form Tai Chi since 1994. In the years when I didn't practice it, there was a definite change in my coping skills.
Ginger

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@gingerw

@windwalker I have been a student of Yang Style, Shanghai long form Tai Chi since 1994. In the years when I didn't practice it, there was a definite change in my coping skills.
Ginger

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@gingerw I am a big fan of Tai Chi and Chi Quong. I used to attend a group that met in the park, and will resume going again once the humidity dies down. I too felt better after doing it.

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