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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Asking for help is difficult, but without assistance, depression is not likely to go away and may get worse. Depression and suicidal ideation, even if severe, usually improve with medication and/or psychotherapy. It is a sign of strength – not weakness – to ask for advice or seek help when you need it.


When depression worsens, suicidal thoughts are much more prevalent. To better manage depression:



If your depression is manifesting in the form of suicidal ideation, talk with someone and make a pact that you will call them if you are tempted to commit suicide.


Sources and Resources


•  Mayo Clinic (www.mayoclinic.org)

•  Medline Plus (www.medlineplus.gov)

•  National Institute of Mental Health  (www.nimh.nih.gov)

Men, are you feeling sad and withdrawn? Do you notice you are not being social these days or you’re working all the time? Are you drinking too much? These may be clues that you have depression. And you may be at risk for suicide.


Depression affects men and women differently. For men, depression may be marked by unhealthy coping or escapist behaviors; too much drinking; or controlling, resistant, abusive behaviors such as reckless driving. Male depression may go unnoticed — and undiagnosed — and could lead to devastating consequences, including suicide.


Women attempt suicide more often, but men die at more than three times the rate and are more likely to follow through effectively, usually with a gun or other lethal method. A new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates overall suicide rates rose 24 percent in the past 15 years, but the rate of suicides were much higher for men ages 45 to 64 years and jumped by 43 percent during that time frame.


There are multiple causes for the increases in this group. Men are typically reticent about getting help for medical matters and particularly for mental health issues. And the economic stress over the past decade, including recessions, job losses and downsizing, may have hit older men much more drastically. Depression and suicidal tendencies in elderly males is a widespread problem, with 80 percent of suicides

WE ARE LOSING OUR MEN TO SUICIDE

JEAN JEFFERS

Jean is an RN with an MSN from University of Cincinnati. She is a staff writer for Living Well 60 Plus and Health & Wellness magazines.

more articles by jean jeffers

in this age group consisting of white males. In older adults, life changes may increase the risk for depression or make existing depression worse. These changes include a move to a retirement community, chronic illness or pain, children moving away, a spouse or close friend passing away and loss of independence.


Symptoms of depression may fool you. Someone may have difficulty sleeping, tiredness, irritability and an increase in substance abuse. He may be isolating himself from friends and family or giving away possessions.


If you think a loved one is displaying depressive symptoms and is at risk for suicide, do not leave him alone. Start a gentle, caring conversation and ask what is going on in his life. Tell him you have noticed a change and you are concerned. Be prepared to listen more than you talk. Encourage him to talk to someone he trusts if he does not open up to you, such as a minister or a trained mental health professional. See if he is willing to get help, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 to reach trained personnel.