(Closed) HERBAL substitutes for antidepressants

posted 5 years ago in Wellness
Post # 3
Member
1446 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I tried the herbal route before I resorted to Celexa and nothing really helped. I did hear of quite a few people that herbal remedies did work for though, so I would give it a try! I’ve heard great things about St John’s Wort (I’ve also heard it can reduce the effectiveness of birth control though so watchout) and I’ve also heard great things about Niacin in large doses (google this and you will find forums where tons of people have helped their depression with Niacin). Good luck!

Post # 4
Member
808 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

FIRST: Speak to your Dr (Do not just stop taking your meds- but you should know this already)

Second; speak with a good naturopath or homeopathist and find out what would be best for you. 

Include lots of blood tests. You could have a deficiency in certain vitamins. I am in the same boat as you, I changed my lifestyle (yoga, excersise, got a puppy). I eat better and I take vitamin B tablets. I have battled depression since I was 13 and I haven’t touched anti depressants for 7 years.

But please don’t take this lightly…Seek as many professionals as need be and take it in baby steps. Please don’t “self” medicate.

Good luck with it all sweetie

Post # 8
Member
808 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@Carolyn72:  A good naturopath will treat every symtom instead of the depression as just being one thing. Which is what I think a lot of these antidepressants don’t do.

I was on such a dose of antidepressants that I couldn’t laugh at my children when they did something funny…My naturopath is amazing

Post # 9
Member
2270 posts
Buzzing bee

Do some research on Sam-E. it’s great. i don’t take anything but i got sam-e at walmart during a down time and it helped a ton.

Post # 10
Member
12 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2011

Also when you let your doctor know you’re stopping prozac, also mention you’re going to start taking supplements.  Combining an SSRI with something like St. John’s can increase your risk of sertonin toxcity, although they’re “natural” the supplements are still drugs.  

 

Have you tried talk therapy in addition to medication?  Therapy can be a useful addition to medication since it can teach you skills to have more control over your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors so that you might not even need medication in the future.  When I work with clients who are on medications, we often work towards eventually getting them off the meds once they’ve stablized (assuming that’s their goal).  There are a lot of different types of therapies that can work (behavioral, cognitive behavioral, acceptance and commitment, interpersonal…), you can always PM if you want more info!  

Good luck, depression is a deep hole and you shouldn’t have to put up with side effects on top of it.  

Post # 11
Member
679 posts
Busy bee

I’ve been taking St. John’s Wort 3x a day for a month now and I have to say I do notice a difference. I was taking Paxil for 4 years before that and I decided to come off of it for a variety of reasons, including not wanting to be medicated forever, and thinking about TTC in the not-so-distant future. My therapist recommended the St. John’s Wort and while I don’t feel anywhere near as good as I did while on Paxil I do feel a lot more even-keeled. She said I could try Sam-E, as well, but I haven’t done that yet.

Just don’t start a supplement while still on an SSRI, since, even though they’re herbs, they can interact with medications.

Post # 13
Member
679 posts
Busy bee

@StuporDuck: Sorry to threadjack but what do you use for light therapy? I was just researching the lamps online and wasn’t sure which to buy.

Post # 14
Member
1348 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

I suggest if you go off your meds that you have someone who is aware of the situation keep an eye on you. When my mother went off her antidepressants she told me that I should keep an eye on her and tell her if things started to go downhill. Talk to someone you trust who can be around enough to tell you if you’re getting depressed. Thank god she asked me to, a few months later I asked her to go back on them because she was borderline suicidal (my younger sisters were really NOT helping the situation, but they are young teenagers and didn’t have the maturity to know what was going on). As far as herbal supplements, it’s probably best to discuss that with a qualified professional because every situation is different. If you don’t already, make sure you get plenty of exercise and have lots of positive people in your life as much as possible. There is a product called ‘Xango’ that my mother tried and it helped, but was ultimately less effective than her medication. When I was younger I had anxiety and I know it’s not the same as depression, but they are often linked and I found that animals had an amazing impact on my life, if I was feeling anxious I still had to get up and care for them, plus the unconditional love they give is brilliant.

Post # 15
Member
1077 posts
Bumble bee

Please try a few more medications or speak with your doctor before you resort to something else. SSRI’s and other drugs cleared for use as anti-depressants work on pathways in the brain that simply aren’t effected by “natural alternatives”. 

I for one have had good luck with Lexapro and Citalopram. Your doctor is urging you to try a new medication because they are the only things proven to actually work!

Post # 16
Member
511 posts
Busy bee

Cessation of meds is definitely something that needs to be medically supervised.  I’ve tried the natural route (supplements, naturopath, Chinese medicine) and nothing else worked….for ME.

I ended up going off SSRI meds and switcing to SNRI (serotonin and norepinephrine re-uptake inhibitors) and it’s brilliant.  Do you have a psych or is your gp prescribing your meds?

I completely understand you not wanting to take synthetic substances to balance your brain chemistry, but sometimes we have no other choice.

Good luck and let us know how it turns out, please?

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