HERBS FOR HEALTH MANAGEMENT

Herbs are a foundational root in medicine and health treatments, dating back thousands of years throughout every culture around the world. Modern Western herbalism comes from ancient Egypt. The Greeks developed a comprehensive philosophy of herbal medicine by 100 BCE and the Romans built upon it to create a variety of medical practices, some of which are still used today.

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ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE IMPACTS PSYCHOLOGICAL HARDINESS

Psychological hardiness is an individual’s resistance to stress, anxiety and depression. It includes the ability to withstand grief and accept the loss of loved ones. Alternative medicine is a more popular term for health and wellness therapies that have typically not been part of conventional Western medical approaches but are often used along with conventional medicinal protocols.  Coping and dealing with stress in a positive manner play a major role in maintaining the balance needed for health and well-being.

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ALTERNATIVE REMEDIES FOR ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION

Interest in complimentary and alternative medicine (CAM) is increasing as consumers and health care professionals search for additional ways to treat anxiety, depression and other mental health disorders. Some of these remedies include:

St. John’s Wort.  More than 30 studies show it to be effective for treatment of mild forms of depression,…

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While it’s been extremely difficult to pinpoint where the duplicates or deletions occur genetically in people with schizophrenia, chromosome 22 (22q11) has long been thought to be involved in at least a small percentage of cases.


The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual is the most up-to-date version of the reference therapists use to classify mental illness. Delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech, grossly disorganized or catatonic behavior and negative symptoms (such as diminished emotional capacity) are all listed as symptoms of schizophrenia. Two of these must be present for a diagnosis of schizophrenia, and the symptoms must occur for at least a month and diminish work capacity.


The manual also takes into account where drugs or psychoactives are contributing to the condition as well as considering previous speech problems, learning disabilities and autism diagnoses. It is easy and common to get a misdiagnosis, which leads to an ineffective prognosis.


If you suspect you or someone you know may be exhibiting some of the symptoms described, contact a qualified mental health professional for further guidance and help.  

SCHIZOPHRENIA HAS A GENETIC COMPONENT

CHARLES SEBASTIAN

Charles Sebastian is a staff writer for Health & Wellness magazine.

more articles by charles sebastian

the chances are 10 percent. If you have a sibling with the disease, it goes up to around 13 percent, and if you have a twin who is schizophrenic, the chances boost to around 50 percent.”


Because the symptoms of the disease usually don’t manifest until late adolescence or early adulthood, they can sometimes be misdiagnosed as mood disorders such as depression or bipolar disorder. Sometimes mood disorders are present with schizophrenia, in which case the person is diagnosed as schizoaffective, meaning there are symptoms for both.


Professors Michael Owen and Michael O’Donovan, both of Cardiff University in Wales, have spent the past 20 years researching the genetic effects of schizophrenia, especially as they relate to other issues. O’Donovan said, “We’ve found those suffering from schizophrenia will often share the genetic and neurological components of those with limited intellectual abilities and autism.” The two professors have received numerous awards for their study, which showed causal links between pathways in the brain that create many other problems besides the long-time suspected mental illnesses.

While it has long been understood how challenging schizophrenia can be for the person suffering from it and for their loved ones, the fact that mental illness runs in families is often forgotten.


The inheritance of the disease becomes tricky, as with many genetic diseases, because there is a likelihood of acquiring the altered or duplicated gene that creates schizophrenia. However, this doesn’t automatically mean the disease will manifest in the same way, if at all. There is also a chance a person may not receive the gene in its normal or altered state. Either way, so many variables go toward creating the myriad of symptoms of schizophrenia that it becomes a tangle.


Some of the signs of schizophrenia become clear to others long before the thought of seeking therapy and having genetic testing become necessary. Poor hygiene, inability to focus and do tasks at hand, hallucinations (especially auditory) and having delusions about being other people or having a strong sense you are someone else are common with schizophrenia.


Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, a professor of schizophrenia research at Columbia University Medical Center, said, “The likelihood of someone developing schizophrenia is directly related to their genetic background, including how many genes they share with the family member who has the illness. While the average in the general population of developing the disease is one in 100, if someone has a parent with schizophrenia,