Monthly Archives: November 2013

Stop Anxiety Attacks – Review

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Some people don’t even realize that they are having anxiety attacks, until they know what the definition of one is. An anxiety attack is a strong sensation that creates fear in oneself, as the symptoms can seem like you are actually dying. If you are someone who suffers from these kinds of attacks, it is important to know as much as you can about them as to help control them. Thus the more you learn and know the quicker you can begin to control your anxiety attacks.

The cause of anxiety attacks can vary from person to person. They may be caused by an upsetting event in someone’s life or a fear of something they have experienced growing up. Stress is a big contributor to anxiety attacks, but the possibilities are truthfully endless. Medication is a known trigger of an anxiety attack, and being less than active is known to be a contributor as well. In reality, there is not a particular known reason for people who experience these attacks, they are in short a body’s way of dealing with an overwhelming feeling in one way or another.

One of the main symptoms of anxiety attacks is extreme fear. Now, fear may be acknowledged as a symptom of anxiety, but in reality it is just the end result of the real symptoms. Before fear sets in, you are likely to experience one or more symptoms of anxiety, which lead you to the fear. Chest pain due to a racing heart, shortness of breath, and dizziness are all symptoms you may experience before the fear sets in. In the end, any uncomfortable sensation that is realized which makes you become fearful for your life is considered a symptom of anxiety, and therefore should be treated as such until you can confirm your suspicions.

Because so many symptoms that are realized during an anxiety attack are similar if not exactly like those of some other kind of condition, it is almost impossible to determine if what you have been feeling is due to anxiety attacks, or another condition. This is why it’s important to see a doctor and explain your symptoms, so that your physician can run the necessary tests in determining whether you have an underlying medical condition that needs to be dealt with or whether it is more than likely anxiety you are dealing with at which point you can work with your doctor in finding ways to control it.

Once you and your doctor have worked together you can be on the way to resolving your trouble. If it is an anxiety attack there are many approaches you can take to help. Discuss your approach with your doctor. In many cases awareness is the first step you can take to stop your anxiety. Check back, as I will be posting other articles on anxiety and will include some of my own experiences.

I have posted a link at the top of my website for a book and audio clips that has help many people to overcome there anxiety and stress. It strongly recommend this guide.

Feel free to visit some of my sites Stop Anxiety Now and Stop Panic Attacks

November 30, 2013

St John’s Wort Benefits and Side Effects

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What is St John’s Wort?

Extracts of Hypericum perforatum L. (St John’s wort) are now successfully competing for status as a standard antidepressant therapy. Because of this, great effort has been devoted to identifying the active antidepressant compounds in the extract. From a phytochemical point of view, St John’s wort is one of the best-investigated medicinal plants. Researchers in Europe have studied St John’s Wort for decades. They discovered a combination of elements in the plant, foremost of which is “hypericin”, react with specific chemicals in the brain to temper emotional discomfort, lift depression, and calm the nerves. Working very much like the common synthetic prescription antidepressants (maprotiline hydrochloride and imipramine), natural extracts from St. John’s Wort have shown to relax and soothe the psyche with minimal side effects

St John’s Wort Benefits

St. Johns Wort today has been found to be very beneficial in healing wounds and is especially good for dirty, septic wounds. St. Johns Wort has been used in case of putrid leg ulcers, that noting heals. Like the leach that was used not too many years ago for wound cleansing it does not destroy the healthy tissues and healthy cells but it cleans the dirt out of septic wounds. It helps reduce the inflammation in septic sores, in boils, in cellulite and lymhangitis.

The compound Hypericin was isolated from St. Johns Wort in 1942 and has been used as an anti-depressant for emotionally disturbed people. This tranquilizing quality from small quantities hypericin increase blood flow to stressed tissue. There is a reduced capillary fragility and enhanced uterine tone due to the increased Hypotensive blood flow.

St John’s Wort Side Effects

The use of St. Johns Wort has been shown to demonstrate a side effect producing a photosensitivity. Hypericin is absorbed in the intestines and concentrates near the skin. An allergic reaction takes place when those with light fair skin are exposed sunlight. That exposure causes tissue damage and in some cases death has resulted. While taking St. Johns Wort one should avoid strong sunlight whether the skin is dark or light. There is a photosensitizing substance produced under the skin by this exposure to sunlight that causes the skin to burn.

Benefits

relieves mild to moderate depression and anxiety.

promotes restful sleep.

improves capillary circulation.

increases cardiac circulation.

eases gastrointestinal distress.

relieves discomfort associated with premenstrual syndrome.

fights retroviruses.

November 29, 2013

Solutions For Depression

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This article is aimed at helping people who are often in a state of depression. I have had many of periods in my life where I have found it difficult to carry on and where in truth I have wished that my life would just end.

Depression affects people in many different ways. From a personal note it affects my sleep patterns and makes the smallest things irritate me. I have even been sick in the morning after spending the night worrying about my present situation.

Most of the time I am not so much depressed at what is happening now but am fearing what might happen in the future. This fear may be about financial matters, a social occasion, health or about my family.

I had basically had enough of constantly being depressed, about being in fear of the future and needed to learn about how to control my depression.

After seeking inspiration from a variety of sources, I had what I hoped was enough ammunition to keep my fears and phobias at bay. I will at times have an off day where I feel quite low and this is where I use my new found knowledge.

How to control your depression

I am a very quiet person and I like to keep myself to myself. Some would say that I border on being a loner, which I would quite agree with. Too many people have hurt me throughout my life and to tell you the truth I prefer being on my own. I am not a peoples person.

I also like to keep my problems to myself. This was my biggest failure, what I needed to do was to talk through my problems and fears with somebody else, a member of my family for example.

This was not easy for me to do and it took a great deal of courage to talk to anybody about the areas of my life which made me feel depressed. I did however go down this route and it did have a positive effect. To talk about my problems was like taking a weight off my shoulders.

The person I confided in was my father. He listened and then came back with some superb advice and a couple of suggestions of what I could do.

This is my second piece of advice. We need to spend less time worrying and more time seeking solutions to our problems. We need to ask ourselves why we are depressed and what can help us to remedy our issues.

My father also stated that I should only do things and go to places that I wanted to. I have always found it hard to turn down invitations to for example a party and have found myself often somewhere that I do not in reality want to be.

He also told me about one of his friends. His name was Mike and he had just been diagnosed with cancer. The doctors had told Mike that he only has a maximum of six months to live and he is only fifty-nine. He asked me to imagine how he must be feeling.

I went home and thought about Mike, I was sure that he would love to swap shoes with me. It is not just about Mike, he has a wife and three children, what must they be going through. I started to appreciate my own health and that of my family a bit more.

By opening up and talking about why I was depressed was the best thing I ever did and is something I will continue to do. My dad certainly helped me to think in a more positive way.

This advice I am sure will not help every person who is depressed as depression is an illness. It has however helped me and I am hoping it will be of benefit to others.

November 28, 2013

Simple Post-Partum Depression Cures

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Post-Partum Depression is a debilitating, albeit extremely common, condition that affects new mothers everywhere. Medication is of course one of the standard remedies, but before you opt for it, there are other, simpler solutions which could very well get you back on your feet without modifying your metabolism.. Here are several of them, drawn from accounts of actual users:

> Go to bed early and try to get a good night’s sleep

> Lie down next to your heater vent and feel its comforting warmth

> Stroll in the park amongst the ducks, watching what they do

> Do things with your hands, perhaps a craft

> Work in the garden, watering plants and pulling up weeds; each is calming in its own way

> Buy yourself a fancy cup of coffee, savor it’s fine taste and aroma

> Play with your kids and make plans with them for what you will do together when you are feeling better

> See a therapist regularly and make sure you are totally candid with him

> See a doctor regularly and make sure you are totally candid with him

> Stay away from alcohol and other depressants

> Have a relaxing bubble bath or a shower with something sweet to eat and drink; play soothing music while you are bathing

> Keep a journal about your feelings: it helps to externalize them

> Exercise regularly: this releases feel-good chemicals (endorphins) into your bloodstream

> Join and participate in online forums for post-partum depression; discuss your problem with others who have it, seek their advice and enjoy the comfort of a loving community

> Take part in activities with family and friends

> Read a good book

> Go visiting

> Call a close friend and talk to her/him

> Go for a drive

> Bake something; this will direct your attention to a subject other than parenting and refresh your mind

> Call your mom and talk to her about your problem. This could be the single most effective therapy for your situation, because she loves you, is deeply concerned about you and will make time to listen to you

> Ask your mom to visit for some days. She could help with your chores and thus create some personal time for you to do the other things mentioned here

> Put baby in her stroller and go out for a walk

> Let yourself wallow for a bit with no pressure and all pleasure – stay in your PJs, eat junk food, mope a bit

> Cuddle with your kids and if you feel like it, have a good cry while doing so. Realize there are people who truly love you (can’t help but feel happy when your kids are giggling and rolling on the floor with you)

> Go to the beach if there is one nearby look at the ocean and breathe the sea air

> Go shopping (nothing like good old-fashioned retail therapy!), or go window-shopping

> Have a long, deep chat with your dear husband, followed by a long, long cuddle and sweet kisses!

November 26, 2013

Signs Of Depression

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When it comes to treating depression, the best course of action is a treatment program that is initiated before a depressive illness becomes too severe. Therefore, it is important for a person to understand and appreciate the telltale signs of depression.

When a discussion turns to the signs of depression, many people slough off the talk, concluding that they do not have to worry about the signs of depression let alone the disease of depression. In point of fact, a majority of people will experience at least one major depressive episode at least once in their lifetimes. Therefore, it is important for everyone to understand at least on a basic level the signs of depression.

One of the major signs of depression is a sudden lack of energy. A depressed person will find his or her self feeling lethargic nearly all of the time. Coupled with the feeling of lethargy as one of the signs of depression, a person afflicted with depression will find his or her sleeping habits distorted.

As signs of depression go, the distortion of sleeping habits of a person who is depressed can take to divergent forms. On the one hand, a person may find his or her self sleeping far more than had historically been normal in his or her life. On the other hand, a person afflicted with depression may find his or her self having a hard time to sleep. (Lack of sleep can further aggravate a depressive illness. While sleeping more than normal can impact a person’s life on a number of levels, it will not necessarily directly aggravate a depressive disease. However, as has been mentioned, being unable to sleep in a sound and appropriate manner will accelerate the symptoms of a depressive illness significantly.)

Another of the signs of depression is a change in appetite. As with sleep patterns, the signs of depression associated with appetite can take two very divergent forms. On the one hand, there are people who are suffering from depression who reduce their intake of food markedly. At the other end of the spectrum, one of the signs of depression can be overeating, particularly when a person is not actually hungry.

One of the signs of depression is a growing lack of attention to personal hygiene and grooming. A person who is depressed loses interest in his or her personal presentation. In addition, these people sometimes feel that they simply lack the energy to work their way through their typical hygienic and grooming routines.

The signs of depression also include a person losing interest in activities and pastimes that he or she once enjoyed. One of the signs of depression related to loss of interested in pastimes and activities is isolation. A depressed person oftentimes will isolate his or her self from friends and family members for extended periods of time.

One of the signs of depression includes disorganization. A person who is depressed may seem scattered and absentminded. That person may also become less than diligent in the management of his or her finances.

November 26, 2013

Seven Tips to Rescue Christmas from Bipolar Disorder

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Christmas can be a nightmare for people with bipolar disorder. As the philosopher Posidonius observed in the fourth century, ‘Melancholy occurs in autumn whereas mania in summer.’ Here downunder in Australia, Christmas is summer time, party time, spending time, hurry time, family time. This is a potent mix of triggers and seasonal vulnerability and many of us do fall over with mania. Friends and family don’t always recognise Christmas mania, because symptoms such as excessive drinking, lavish spending, staying up late at functions, and being in a hurry are features of the season. The stress involved with ‘having’ to buy Christmas presents and ‘having’ to get together with family, along with summer-time vulnerability make Christmas a bipolar nightmare in the southern hemisphere.

It’s not much better up north. Since the fourth century we haven’t come much further than Posidonius except to declare there is such a thing as Seasonal Affective Disorder. It seems the number of hours of daylight you experience is related to your likelihood of getting depressed in winter. The closer you are to the poles, the better your chances.

Then there are seasonal triggers, such as figuring out how to buy presents on a tight budget. If you’re depressed, the ubiquitous expectation to be happy (just because it’s Christmas) only makes things worse.

Short of walking around with a sunlight-emitting lamp strapped to your forehead, or cutting up your credit card, what can you do about seasonal episodes of bipolar? Here are some quick tips to rescue Christmas.

1.Maintain your daily sleep/wake routine. Use medicine if you have to;

2.Keep in control of drinking. If you suddenly start a binge, it could be a major alert of an episode;

3.Make a Christmas shopping list and don’t buy anything not on the list!

4.Ask your partner or friend to help you stick to a budget;

5.Keep up medication;

6.Check in with your doctor or mental health worker as soon as you or someone close notices symptoms;

7.Keep away from any ‘toxic’ family members (you know who they are).

No plan is failsafe, but then again, having no plan is like going out without an umbrella on a stormy day. You can live well with bipolar, and Christmas doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Plan ahead and have a healthy, happy Christmas.

November 25, 2013

Seasonal Affective Disorder and Tanning Salons

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With the arrival of the cold season, besides cold-driven nuisance, some persons experience drawbacks regarding the general state, lack of energy and depression of unknown origin. It was scientifically ascertained that the lack of light favors the production of melatonin by the pineal gland, a hormone inducing sleep. That is why, during the cold seasons when days are shorter and the sunlight is scarce, we often feel sleepy or drowsy. Also, even during spring and summer, if the tendency is to keep most of the time indoors at home or at the office, the effect may be similar, though not as severe.

Well, if drowsiness were the only impact generated by season changes, things would be easier to solve (with a little coffee maybe!). The problem is that melatonin secretion is synchronized with the production of a neurotransmitter, serotonin, which is involved in several physiological processes such as temperature, blood-pressure regulation and in neuropsychological functions such as appetite, memory and mood. The two do not work together at the same time. When melatonin is secreted, serotonin production is inhibited. Lack of serotonin causes disorders such as chronic fatigue syndrome and reflects its effects on mood also, triggering depression in some persons.

Melatonin is active at night and serotonin is active in the daytime. Also, there is the age factor that contributes to the balance of the two chemicals: the secretion of melatonin decreases with age. There has been established that the link between serotonin and melatonin along with their dependence on the body clock may explain the depression experienced by the people suffering from the disorder called Seasonal Affective Disorder – SAD. Depression, sleep problems, weight gain, anxiety, joint pain, irritability, stress, headaches are some of the symptoms that may appear when we suffer from SAD.

The problem is primarily caused by the lack of sunlight. It has been scientifically proven that sunlight favors increase in serotonin levels and favors vitamin D accumulation. Besides having anti-osteoporotic, immunomodulatory, anticarcinogenic, antipsoriatic, antioxidant properties, vitamin D is also a mood-modulator.

UV rays exposure favors vitamin D synthesis in the skin. That is why persons who go to tanning salons have noticed mood improvement and keep the habit in order to maintain the state of well-being. However, it is common knowledge that the effects of the UV exposure are not always the most desirable ones. If going to tanning salons becomes a habit, then recurrent, prolonged UV exposure may result in consequences such as premature skin aging and eventually skin cancer.

Light therapy represents a way to treat SAD. Light operates on the body in two ways: through skin impact or by entering your eyes. Only UV light has effects on the skin, while the light that has effects by entering your eyes needs not be UV, it just has to be bright. Its energizing effect comes from the fact that it stimulates the production of serotonin. The simplest way to get enough bright light is to spend an hour a day or more outdoors, where the light levels range from 1,000 to 50,000 lux or more, compared to room lighting, which is about 50-200 lux.

If your schedule or the weather does not permit it, an alternative is to purchase a light therapy device. For optimum effects, the light source either has to be very bright – 5,000 lux or more – or it has to be in a particular spectrum – around 460 nanometers, which is in the blue range. According to new research, blue range light will provide benefits even if at a dimmer level. Most companies producing light bulbs make full spectrum lights that may successfully replace sunlight.

Yet, there are side effects that bright artificial light may induce, namely it may interfere with sleep (especially when exposure is made in the evening hours) or even trigger in some people a mania – condition called bipolar disorder (known as manic depression).

The safest remains the natural outdoor light, on condition that UV protection is used.

November 24, 2013