It becomes a vicious cycle.
Depression hits. I feel weak and detached. I don’t want to eat, walk, or talk.
No appetite leads to poor nutrition hence fatigue, irritability, …
Staying in bed leads to poor circulation, weakness, …
Not socializing leads to anxiety, fear, …
Now the focus isn’t where it began.
Now it’s … well you’re not eating, staying in bed, what do you expect? You won’t feel better until you …
BUT I was healthy when I began to feel sad, lack of appetite, tired, ….
Let’s not forget where it began. Why did it begin when all was well?
The problem is the Depression. No appetite, isolation, sadness … these are symptoms.
“How do I fix the problem?” or in many cases of mental illness “How do I manage it?”
Modern medicine focuses on treating the symptoms not the source/root of the problem.
Why don’t we ask, “Why is this happening to my body/mind? What is causing this to happen”
Medication is to treat the symptoms ALWAYS. It helps to gain control of what is happening and gives you the opportunity to address the source of the problem. To fix the problem IF there is a solution. Sometimes there isn’t one or it hasn’t been discovered.
I was told the Depression I was experiencing is a source of a “chemical imbalance.”
They give me antidepressants to help my brain correct the problem. So I thought it was. I believed the medication would help my brain to learn to make the right amount of chemicals and fix me. Then I taper off the meds and stay feeling better. I learned from my Psychiatrist that is FALSE!
I learned antidepressants cause an increase of the chemicals already existent in the brain by creating an accident. Blocking an exit path creating a “car” pile up of my chemicals in the intersection where the chemicals produce it’s effect (More wood in the fire, the bigger the flames). A temporary boost so you can “feel better” with hopes you take advantage of this window to address the ROOT of the problem.
ECT causes a storm in the brain, a jump in performance of the chemicals.
A boost that will fade. Hence why ECT isn’t a one time session and why medication dosages increase with time or changed for another.
So what is the root of the problem.
Psychiatry addresses the root with Behavioral Therapy. Addressing behavior, perception, decision-making, environment.
Alternative Medicine addresses the root with Nutrition.
What is the fuel that feeds the brain in the first place? What makes the chemicals in the brain? Is there a shortage? Can it be replenished/corrected with diet.
Some say they are intertwined and effect each other: Brain – Behavior – Nutrition
It’s a matter of balance. A behavior can shift how your body utilizes it’s chemicals/vitamins and produce another behavior. A surplus or lack of nutrients can do the same.
I will leave this simple example as food for thought:
I get a headache. A symptom. I take ibuprofen. Headache goes away. BUT why did I get the headache? If I don’t figure it out, I will get a headache again. I learn it is from dehydration. Drink water. I stay hydrated, I won’t experience a headache resulting from that specific cause ever again.
The vicious cycle: Symptoms of Depression is what hinders the ability to do what is necessary to feel better including asking for help.
Featured Image Artist: James A. Sugar