Trying to overcome depression naturally, please advise

I have been diagnosed depression and severe anxiety in September, but signs were already there earlier this year. Anyway, things start going downward quickly. It's like been told I have anxiety/depression made me become really ill. Within a couple of days, I started to have insomnia, waking up at 4am no more sleep. low appetite. Plus short breath, fatigue, no interest doing things...

The only thing I still enjoy and love doing is going out and meeting people. I fill up my day with seeing friends. When I am around people I feel normal.

Morning is my worst, full on depressed and sad, racing thought on worries and fear... only gets better as day goes on...

I try to avoid antidepressant, because really don't want to go down that route and later have to fight coming off.

So what I am doing:

Private talking therapy: after 5 sessions the counsellor said my anxiety too high, I am not ready to tackle my fear/worry, so she recommends me try hypnotherapy.

Acupuncture: 3 sessions so far, enjoyed it as it's so relaxing, but still need to see solid effect,

Taking walk in the morning: calming

5 htp: only tried two days and felt headache and more depressed ?!

Exercise: even light yoga wears me off, depression has made me totally exercise intolerant

CBT group course: useful but limited

So far things haven't changed much, not much improvement. I am seeking all help I can get, so desperately want to get better and be normal again.

Anyone has successful experience on natural cure? Or my depression is so severe that AD is a must?

Thanks for any advice.

24 Replies

  • You could try Fish oil which is not that expensive. Ideally you need very concentrated version which is hard to find in UK.

    Google "Myprotein" who sell the most concentrated version I could find but as mine came in a clear bottle I keep it in a cupboard as apparently light can degrade it over a period.

    If you google James Phelps MD his site has a lot on natural ways of combatting depression,including Fish oil , although he admits sometimes ads are also needed . I believe he is highly rated in the US .

    I have taken fish oil for a while but not long enough to find out if it will continue to keep me free of depression. However as it is cheap , good for the heart, could be good for the brain, and probably as a bonus lessens constipation, then what have I got to lose.

    Some say it is also good for the joints altho this is probably not true despite the fact it seems sensible.

    I think you are wise to try and avoid drugs if at all possible. I do take Ads but would prefer not to have to.

    Have said to my psycho I wish to minimise drugs as either they modify my brain/mind function so I'm not really me in one sense ; or they don't ,in which case I want a refund.


  • Thanks for your reply. I am already taking tge vitamins and fish oil-probably should check the better ones you mentioned.

    I feel I am not improving at the moment , if it comes down to AD as a must I will just be brave to take it I suppose.

  • Hi there :-) I couldn't take anti depressants due to a severe reaction, hallucinations and suicidal. I then had no option to research natural solutions. I take high dose omega 3 ( a professor from cambridge uni claims tasking omega 3 was more effective than anti depressants. I also take complex vitamin b and vitamin d and folic acid. Please google the benefits of those on depression . I have also stopped smoking as that's bad on the brain too. I eat making sure I have my five a day( have to really force that as I lose appetite when depressed) . I also have weekly therapy sessions with a fantastic counsellor and life coach.( saw two awful ones before finding him) I can say that I've moved from suicidal depression to not feeling depressed or tired during the day.

    Stopping smoking made me depressed with vivid dreams etc but now I'm over the withdrawl and the depression that causes I genuinely feel I am repairing my brain. I've googled effects of depression / biological causes of depression on the brain to understand why I felt so bad so now I'm mending it naturally . I drink Lots of water now too and have Epsom salt baths where the magnesium gets rid of toxins and I avoid stressful situations as much as possible and i am now recovering :-) plus I've left a stressful job And took a lower paid and lower level role so I don't have as much stress. I've been heavily supported by a great life coach so all of those things combined I'm recovering . Xx

  • Great Pippa. Well done and good luck to you.

  • Thanks poppy :-) still have tough times and it's still a whisper away but so far so good . Hope you are feeling ok? Pippa xxx

  • Hi Pippa I'm feeling fine thank you. I'm the same as you. I don't take any medication as it doesn't agree with me and I prefer to treat naturally. I take lots of exercise, drink plenty of water and eat healthily. It can be a struggle but it generally works. I agree with you about epsom salts baths - try body brushing as well. Sweep upwards towards the heart with a soft brush. xx

  • Oh yes , good idea, thanks poppy. I'm sure every little positive effort helps xx

    Well done too on keeping on top .

  • That's great ! You must havr done a lot and very focuesd to achieve all this. Very glad to hear it's working !

  • Yes it came out of desperation really because I knew I literally couldn't live the way I was . Not being able to take AD it was a case of helping myself . I'm out of the thick of it but not the woods if that's makes sense . I will introduce excercise next and body brushing . I'm keeping going :-) xx

  • You sound a lovely positive person who will get there in the end. I'm sure you have tried camomile tea but if you haven't that's really good for calming you in a stressful moment. xx

  • Oh thank you. You too. I've done the body brushing tonight as an added extra ;-) it's a massive fight though I won't lie.

    Stress does trigger depression for me so I shall buy some chamomile as I am a tea drinker. Take a deep breath and have a chamomile tea sounds like a good plan.

    Have you had bad bouts of depression? I am a bit worried it never leaves you so it's really careful management. The counsellor/ life coach has helped a great deal for me on the recent episode . Work stress has pulled me down again, it's impossible to lead a stress free life ! Have you used this site for some time, I'm new on here , never used a site like this before . Pippa xxx

  • Hi Pippa Yes, had a couple of bouts but I've found managing it the way I do I'm fine. I have IBS which is where I've found this site useful. My daughter had terrible PND after having my grand daughter and had CBT which helped her a great deal and is now fine. She too is in a stressful enviroment at work so has to be careful. You just have to manage your symptoms the best you can. It is tough but as you say it's impossible to lead a stress free life. Just make sure you make time for yourself to relax. Easier said than done I know. xx

  • Hi, Sunshineinside. I recognise so many of your symptoms. Your experiences and feelings are like a mirror image of mine. I'm so sorry for you as it is a living Hell. From what you say, I think you have severe depression. That's what I was diagnosed with too. I don't want to tell you what to do. I can only share with you what happened to me. Remember that what is right for one person may not be right for another.

    I was prescribed Sertraline and a short course of Diazepam which made it possible for me to eat again. Gradually, my physical strength returned and was later followed by a mental shift to a better place. For me, medication was essential but, as I said before, everyone is unique. I hope you find the right way for you and soon leave all your darkness behind you.

    If I can help, just ask. Big hug, Myra.

  • Thanks a lot, yes I am concerned my depression is reaching severe level. Might just start AD soon.

    How long did the Sertraline kick in for you and did you take diazpam together ?

  • Thanks so much Myra. I am seriously considering taking meds now as I am not seeing myself improve much.

  • Sertraline took about 6 weeks to have any effect. 50ml was not enough so I was put on 100ml. I took Diazepam regularly only for a few days but then made sure I always had them in case I needed them. They were a short term benefit but not to be taken for long. I was aware of their addictive properties so got off them asap. Their strength was 5mg. Anything less was useless. They were excellent to cure panic attacks.

  • Trying to get over depression naturally is the better option but it takes time . I had a bad time 8 years ago with depression and i took some time of work made myself go for walks . I went to the gym as my doctor recommended it was horrible at first as I just felt so ill. I found a spin class helped me as you can sit at the back and work to your own pace. The music is fun and the disco lights are fab . Unfortunately my depression has come back just recently . I am going to have cbt thearpy as I don't want anti depressants as my friend has started a course of them and he is worse than when his depression first started. So like me give it time , I know how frustrating it is but time and exercise healthy eating and spending time with loved ones will help. I also take kalms it takes around one month for them to kick in but they help you sleep . Good luck

  • Sorry to hear it's reared it's head again. I have a recent experience too. I too treat naturally . I get very scared when I have serious bouts though. Other than kalms do you find anything significantly has helped you? I am just accepting now that I suffer from depression as its cropped up time and time again, I suppose when it repeatedly happens you acknowledge it more rather than get over it and it never comes back.

    Hope you don't feel too bad this evening . Pippa xx

  • Thanks for sharing! I did try exercise but I am really so weak and incapable of any now (very sad...) I tried spinning last week and almost collapsed, had to leave half way. So for now I am staying out of gym for a while.

    I am losing confidence that I can fight this naturally, being fed up of being so weak and tried and sad...

  • You are not sad or weak but I assume you feel fatigue all the time and so do I . When u do spin you don't have to keep up just go at your own pace . Maybe try a brisk walk instead . Have a pamper evening hot bath box chocolates cup of tea . Feet up and chill . You are worth it keep telling yourself that . I really need to listen to my own advice lol

  • Exercise and eating healthy and now I am waiting for cbt thearpy. Also started taking vitimin b12 and oil of evening primrose. I do think the more positive things you push yourself to do will help but trying to find the underlining issue is the main thing. I hope my cbt can help. I will keep you posted. If you have a bad day and need to send a message to me yoy are welcome . Support is the key to recovery

  • Thank you! I am taking lots of vitamin and doing CBT group course. I thisnk I know my underline issue as this was already discovered during counselling. However my physical weakness and fatigue means I don' t have the energy to work on them, all I want is just have my energy back and the physical symptoms to go away.

  • I have done all the things you have it helped for a short time then the fepression came back. At present I am finding it hard to cope. I do not look forward to anything i seem void of any emotion apart from sadness.

    Dont mean to burst your bubble. These things have to be tried and may help you.

  • Thank you for sharing, no you are not bursting any bubbles. I know how you feel. I guess I am just going to take the meds soon as I really want to start functioning again. This drag is making me feel so helpless and no joy.

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