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GamingGrrl 06-12-2013 11:46 AM

Beating depression and anxiety without drugs?
Last night my older sister had a blow up at me (she's much older than me, has her own family, sees me maybe once every 3 months) about my depression and anxiety. She said some really mean things to me that I don't feel comfortable posting, but the thing that got to me the most was her saying "the least you could do is get on meds and be fully functional." In my opinion, I am fully functional. I'm studying for my GED after trying out different methods of schooling and realizing they weren't for me and also being very behind in credits after missing tons of school due to caring for a terminally ill family member junior year, I currently have two different job offers for local barns (fingers crossed, I'm so excited!), I'm saving money and budget wisely. I don't wish to be on meds. I've tried them in the past and hated the side effects and way they made me feel. I also think society is overmedicated and I would rather make changes to my lifestyle and thinking than to go on pills.

I guess I was wondering if anyone here has beaten or at least kept depression or anxiety at bay and didnt use meds? Or if anyone has any methods they've tried or have heard of? I've started doing yoga and meditation. I was up to a month and a half without a panic attack or blue day before our spat last night. :-(

Thanks for any and all help guys!

katbalu 06-12-2013 12:02 PM

Try running. You might hate it, but at least give it a try. Try the couch to 5k program. Sometimes the 'runners high' works very well with these issues.
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morganarab94 06-12-2013 12:06 PM

I have been on Meds (Paxil) since 3rd grade...yep you heard that right 3rd grade, and I am now out of highschool. I'm not going to go into details of why but basically it was something that could've been easily fixed with couseling and time but the doctor just slapped me on meds. I wish I would've never gotten on them because now I can't get off of them. There is nothing wrong with not wanting to be on meds! I have been weaning off of them for about a year now and I'm proud to say I'm finally down to 10mg.:-) (I started at 20mg so you can see how slow the process has been...)
Anyways enough about me. Medication can be beneficial if it is monitored right! Mine was not monitored right by the doctor and thats why what is happening is happening! But if you have a doctor that will monitor you and everything then it can very much so help! Also look into counseling. It can be really beneficial as well.
As far as alternative methods for helping I highly highly highly recommend Neuro-feedback. If you've never heard of it look it up! I was super skeptical at first but honestly it really does work. It is my source of "therapy".
Another thing you could try is all natural remedies. If you have a nature store near you then go speak with someone about what's going on and ask them what they recommend.
Exercise is also a huge help. I try to exercise everyday. It makes you feel good.
Eating healthy will also lower anxiety. Make sure you eat regularly and drink a lot of water. Drinking water and eliminating caffiene helps as well.
And of course horses are the greatest therapy ever. :D

GamingGrrl 06-12-2013 12:19 PM

Thanks guys!

I've been trying to work myself up into running. I have really week ankles so I've been attempting to do a program where I walk for 1/8th mile, then run 1/8th mile until I've done an entire mile and then work myself up to running an entire mile and going from there. I do hate running though, so it's a challenge to get myself to go out and do it sometimes.

I was in counseling but ended up stopping for some reason, but I have an appointment scheduled about a month out from now.

I'll look into Neuro-feedback!

I am a very positive person, despite my conditions, and I'm thankful for every day on this planet!
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SlideStop 06-12-2013 01:15 PM

I have.

First I got proper help, even though I was resistant. It took me a little while to find a therapist I liked, I got on medication (which took a while and a few different combos to find the right one) and I was hospitalized for 6 months. It was pretty severe. The medication at least helped me taste what it felt like to be happy again, but the bulk of my recovery is came from me WANTING to get better again. That's when I discovered horses. I started volunteering at a local TR barn and that brought me immense pleasure. I didn't want to feel depressed any more. There were times when I could feel myself going backwards but I worked very hard to remind myself this ISN'T how I want to be. Two months after I got out of the hospital I started chucking my pills, I didn't want them, I felt that I could handle it myself. And I did.
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Foxesdontwearbowties 06-12-2013 02:06 PM

I quit taking medication cold-turkey. I took a lot more than just depression medication, for other health problems as well, but they all made me feel worse it seemed.
Its been about 6 months since I've taken any and for the most part I don't have any problems. I still get angry/depressed/anxious/ect but far less often, and I have found that going out to my pony or rabbits, or exercising relieve it and get me back to being okay.
All I changed was my diet and exercise routine. It fixed more than just my mental/emotional problems, a lot of my health problems ceased as well and I am now steadily gaining weight. (A good thing)
Cut out all the bad foods in your diet. I don't mean never eat a cookie again, just do so in moderation. And keep up with steady exercise. Yoga is fantastic, walking, jogging, swimming, anything is great. Those two things together will make you feel better, and make your body to be healthier. (:

alexischristina 06-12-2013 02:11 PM

Any kind of exercise helps. For some people it's running, for others it's doing some sort of pilates or yoga, just WALKING and being out in the fresh air can really help. If you're against medicating yourself you can also look at 'natural remedies'. I went through a lot last year and it really came out in my riding, I would have full panic attacks in the ring. I took a drop called rescue remedy (I think) and it was just enough to keep those panic attacks away taking it directly, or you can put it in a water bottle and just sip on that during the day. It's not strong or addicting at all, but it tastes horrible.

SlideStop 06-12-2013 02:12 PM

Also, St. John's wart is supposed to be a natural mood booster. Only problem is that its no FDA regulated so one batch may contain 40%, the next might have 70%.
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GamingGrrl 06-12-2013 02:44 PM

Thank you all!
I'm trying to become a healthier person, mentally and physically and these are all great suggestions!

I have to admit, my diet is extremely crappy. I fell into the trap of fast food and not caring, but I've been trying to limit myself. Being on a budget is also forcing me to have more home made meals, which is really the way to go anyways.

Now that the horrible PNW rain has let up into some sunshine, I've been able to get out and hike and trail ride and geocache more, and I've felt the difference already. :-)
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SlideStop 06-12-2013 02:49 PM

Is there anything you do that your extremely passionate about and makes you feel better about yourself?
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