Approximately 1 in 5 American adults suffer from a mental health disorder. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), there were around 51.5 million adults in the United States in 2019 with a mental illness. Depression and anxiety are two common mental illnesses.
Fortunately, detox along with holistic treatment for anxiety and depression can help those with co-occurring disorders. Briefly, a co-occurring disorder, dual diagnosis, or comorbidity is when a person has two or more health disorders (substance use disorder and mental illness). Learn how natural remedies for stress, anxiety, as well as depression. Also, you can gain more information about ways to treat anxiety and depression through positive activities.
What Is Holistic Treatment for Anxiety and Depression?
Holistic treatment for anxiety and depression holds the view that there are natural ways to treat mental illness. It doesn’t dismiss the power of modern medicine. Instead, it says that certain natural supplements and positive behaviors can ward off negative signs and symptoms of mental illness. We’ll break it down to better understand ways to treat anxiety and depression holistically.
What Is Holistic Treatment?
Holistic treatment is another way to say treatment that deviates from traditional medical practices. At its core, people who practice this form of treatment believe that healing involves treating the body, mind, and spirit. While many studies support the power of holistic treatment, the FDA may not approve of some of the methods.
That said, Coastal Detox has found it’s significantly helped a number of our patients. Of course, it’s well documented that poor mental health affects physical health and can lead to substance abuse without proper treatment. Holistic treatment goes by a variety of other names including:
- Holistic practices
- Alternative therapy
- Natural healthcare
- Integrative medicine
- Alternative medicine
- Complementary therapy
There might be so many names because holistic treatment covers a large range of activities and dietary recommendations. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) broke down holistic treatment into five different categories.
5 Categories of Holistic Practices
- Alternative Medical Systems
- Mind-Body Interventions
- Biologically-Based Therapies
- Manipulative and Body-Based Methods
- Energy Therapies
There aren’t enough peer-reviewed studies to back up the claims of every activity and nutritional advice that falls under holistic treatment. However, some forms of holistic treatment for anxiety and depression are recognized within the medical community. Your insurance may even cover holistic practices like acupuncture and chiropractic services.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety can be summarized as prolonged stress that isn’t proportional to the situation at hand. For example, a person with an anxiety disorder may have worried thoughts, feel stressed, and experience negative physical changes. There are five major types of anxiety disorders recognized by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
5 Major Types of Anxiety Disorders
- Panic Disorder
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Social Phobia/Social Anxiety Disorder
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common form of mental illness. They affect 18.1% of the American population every year.
What is Depression?
On the other hand, depression is a mood disorder that negatively affects a person’s mood and behaviors. Just like mental illness in general, depression looks different for everyone. Though, the NIMH writes that people feel low moods at some point across the board whatever type of depression they have. Some types of depression are:
- Bipolar Disorder
- Psychotic Depression
- Postpartum Depression
- Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
- Persistent Depressive Disorder (Dysthymia)
Depression is a deadly mental health disorder. While often dismissed on a societal level, 800,000 people die from suicide every year. Depression and substance use disorder are close friends. It’s necessary to root out both during treatment to avoid any complications.
Holistic Treatment for Anxiety and Depression Through Supplements
Since ancient times, people across the globe have used natural supplements and vitamins to heal the mind, body, and soul. Holistic practitioners use a variety of natural herbs and vitamins as holistic treatment for anxiety and depression. Coastal Detox has favorites that we’d like to highlight.
5 Natural Remedies for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
1. Vitamin B6
Serotonin is widely known as a “feel-good” chemical. It plays a major role in happiness, mood stabilization, relaxation, and sleep. Vitamin B6 helps the body produce more serotonin. Research indicates that low levels of vitamin B6 were linked to low levels of serotonin. Low levels of serotonin mean an increased chance of anxiety and depression.
Iron is another supplement that helps with serotonin production. It may be because serotonin is found in blood platelets. An iron deficiency can reduce the number of blood platelets. Iron is found in many supplements, but also in food. Beans, red meat, and leafy vegetables are good sources of iron.
3. St. John’s Wort
NCCIH writes that science has documented the effect of St. John’s wort and depression. Yet, the results are a mixed bag. Some studies note they are just as effective as antidepressants. Others say that they are just as effective as a placebo. Regardless, this supplement has the potential to boost serotonin levels. Be careful, though. It can have adverse effects when taken alongside other medications.
4. Valerian Root
Valerian root is another supplement derived from a plant. It has mild sedative properties that can make a person feel more relaxed. Unlike St. John’s wort, there are few adverse effects. It’s best to take this supplement before bed as it can make you sleepy. Many people with insomnia like to take it because of this.
There is little research surrounding the benefits of chamomile for mental health disorders. Yet, the research out there suggests it helps with stress and anxiety. It’s very safe to use as a tea or in capsule form. It also aids with indigestion problems, which may manifest as a result of depression or anxiety. Forms of chamomile are made from the flower of the same name.
3 Ways to Treat Anxiety and Depression Naturally
The American Psychological Association (APA) found the link between improved mental health and journaling. Studies indicate that writing down feelings can help a person process their emotions. This is applicable even for people who don’t necessarily feel comfortable journaling or writing.
All it takes is writing for 20 minutes a day. Though, you may not always be up to the task. Writing a little every day can help heal naturally. People that take the time to journal report less intrusive thoughts and cognitive health. However, try not to ruminate on issues when journaling, since that could make it worse. Process feelings, but focus on the positive.
Clearing the mind can be difficult, especially when someone is going through the darkest period of their life. However, meditating can offer solace even in the worst of times. People that train themselves to meditate are calmer in stressful situations. In fact, studies show that monks who practice this had the parts of the brain light up during meditation and after.
Mindfulness is a learned skill, meaning it takes time to perfect. Meditation isn’t trying to clear the mind, per se. It’s allowing thoughts to peacefully cross without getting bothered by them. This ultimately leads to a clear mind.
The Harvard Gazette writes that creating art is a meaningful way to express emotion. People with depression and anxiety may have a lot of pent up negative emotions. Making art gives them a creative outlet that lets them express those negative feelings in a positive way. Plus, it’s fun.
We don’t minimize the power of fun at Coastal Detox. Having a good time makes a person less stressed. Using art to do this takes the mind off of negative emotions. Or at least, gives the mind a distraction instead of drugs and alcohol.
Exercising releases the same chemicals in the brain that drugs and alcohol often do. Although they may not spur production in the same way, the body can feel the same high from it. The best part about exercising to help anxiety and depression is that it’s totally free and has unlimited variations.
At the end of the day, individuals who want holistic treatment for anxiety and depression should choose a form of exercise they like. That could be sports, yoga, cardio, or strength activities. Or, they can mix it up and try different kinds throughout the week.
How Holistic Treatment for Anxiety and Depression Helps Detox
During detox, medical professionals and trained staff will help patients rid the body of the substance they’re addicted to. This rebalances the chemical imbalance in the brain and body in the process. Holistic ways to treat anxiety and depression can help speed up the recovery process. This is especially so in the case of supplements.
People that have a substance use disorder often lack essential vitamins and minerals. Drugs and alcohol waste away at the body’s systems. Plus, people with an addiction care more about using their substance of choice than maintaining physical and mental health. Natural remedies for stress, anxiety, and depression complement detox.
Coastal Detox Shows Patients the Power of Holistic Treatment for Anxiety and Depression
Coastal Detox is a state of the art facility that helps ease the discomfort of withdrawal. We think of holistic treatment for anxiety and depression as a tool in our recovery toolbox. Patients here might receive medication-assisted treatment in tandem with natural remedies to soothe the mind, body, and soul. To detox from drugs and alcohol in a comfortable, supportive setting, contact us immediately. We’re ready to help!