For patients that have been diagnosed with or are suffering from depression, they may be unsure whether they want to go on medication or they may be taking medication and unclear whether it is providing symptomatic relief. Depression is a very common condition and often particularly disabling for patients that are just trying to live their lives but feel weighed down by both the emotional and physical symptoms that can accompany this complex disease.
Depression is not just an imbalance of neurotransmitters in the brain leading to feelings of guilt, worthlessness, sadness, cognitive slowing, and loss of interest in activity. It also manifests physically in increased pain perception, changes in appetite, changes in sleep pattern, fatigue and muscle tension, and a myriad of other physical ailments. It can make it hard for a patient to go about his or her daily activities, lacking the motivation and energy to eat well and exercise, ultimately leading to a deterioration in overall health.
Treatments for depression, such as pharmaceuticals, may have adverse side effects that can affect libido or may be hard to stop taking. Natural approaches targeting depression still acknowledge that imbalances in neurotransmitters may be present, but try to correct these imbalances naturally through diet, exercise and holistic supplementation as necessary.
Beyond neurotransmitters and brain chemistry, depression can also be a manifestation of other physiologic body processes such as imbalances in hormones or a presentation of an underactive thyroid.
Depression can be debilitating, and work to help patients function at their best and assist them with relief from their depression. I work to determine the root cause of a patient’s depression symptoms. I use sophisticated testing, thorough intake of symptoms and clinical judgment to come up with a plan that will help relieve depression and rebalance the entire body in the process. I work to help patients feel like themselves again!
Patient’s sometimes underestimate the impact that overall health, such as diet and buildup of toxins in the body can have on the mind and depression. Through my naturopathic training in functional medicine testing, I have the ability to test for toxic build up in the body, as well as hormone levels. I use highly specialized testing to determine the underlying cause of depression. By testing neurotransmitter and cortisol levels, we can provide patients with targeted nutritional counseling and a supplemental plan to rebalance their body and reduce depression symptoms. Chiropractic care and physical therapy are available and may be suggested for those with muscle tension or spinal misalignment that may be, both a symptom of, and further contributing to chronic depression.
I seek to provide a comprehensive care approach that takes care of the entire patient, not focused on just the mind, but acknowledging the importance of the mind-body connection when addressing depression. I work with patients to create a manageable daily routine that takes into account all of the many factors that can contribute to depression so that they can reclaim control of their life and feel a sense of health and well-being. I understand that it can be overwhelming to make health changes at first when facing depression and work with our patients on a plan that is actionable, one step at a time.