Anxiety and depression are amongst most common mental health problems. Although they are typically treated with the use of medication some people turn to herbs and natural remedies to find relief from their symptoms. Many of these natural remedies have been used medicinally for centuries as alternative treatments. A number of herbs nowadays is marketed as mood boosters intended for people who suffer from chronic feelings of hopelessness or sadness.
It may be worth mentioning that some anxiety is a normal part of life and a by-product of living in an often fast-paced world. It is what makes you aware of danger, motivates you to stay alerted or enables you to calculate risks. However, when anxiety becomes a daily struggle, it is important to act before it gets worse. Uncontrolled anxiety may greatly impact the quality of your life and run down your health.
Here are several home remedies and natural treatments that may help lift your mood when you experience mild to moderate anxiety and depression.
Develop A Routine
Focusing on a regular routine may be very beneficial if you suffer from anxiety or depression. Depression can harm the basic structure of daily life, causing one day to blend indistinguishably into the next. This lack of structure can also impact on symptoms of depression. Creating a carefully planned routine may prove helpful in fighting many aspects of debilitating depression naturally and safely.
The best ways to develop a sensible routine are to concentrate on lifestyle changes that can improve your overall health. These include setting regular sleeping pattern of going to bed and waking times, making time to relax at some point each day as well as establishing simple, attainable goals each day, finding some type of responsibility, whether it means returning to part-time working, volunteering or any other activity you could commit to.
Regular exercise is good for your physical and emotional health as it plays an important role in regulating mood. Regular exercise significantly increases energy levels as well as reduces the feeling of fatigue. Scientific evidence tells us that exercise releases chemicals in the brain called endorphins, which are responsible for improving mood and can alleviate symptoms of depression.
Lack of sleep is a common symptom of anxiety. Getting enough sleep can prove effective in dealing with stress. When the body is stressed out, it is said to automatically release high levels of cortisol hormones which are believed to induce depression. Getting quality sleep is therefore considered important for your mood and overall well-being.
Make sleep a priority by:
- going to sleep at the same time every day
- make sure your bedroom is aired and dark before you go to sleep
- avoid eating or drinking caffeinated drinks and alcohol before night time
- avoid watching tv, using phone etc
The main purpose of meditation is to remove chaotic thoughts from your mind and replace them with a sense of calmness and mindfulness of the present moment. Meditation is well known for alleviating stress and anxiety. Some studies suggest that 30 minutes of daily meditation can act as an antidepressant by reducing anxiety symptoms.
Engaging in relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga and deep breathing can therefore be effective in alleviating the symptoms of clinical or psychological depression.
Deep breathing exercises is a deliberate process of taking slow, even, deep breaths that can help restore normal breathing patterns and reduce anxiety.
Aromatherapy uses fragrant essential oils to promote health and well-being. The oils may be inhaled directly or added to a diffuser/bath etc or applied topically. Studies have shown that aromatherapy can boost your mood, help you relax and sleep.
Some essential oil blends used to relieve anxiety are: Valor, Peace & Calming, Joy, RutaVaLa. For best results and top quality only use truly natural essential oils made with natural, clean, organic ingredients.
Have A Healthy Diet
Eating a balanced diet which is composed of foods that are rich in proteins, fruits and vegetables and complex carbohydrates creates a positive impact in treating depression naturally. Low blood sugar levels, dehydration or chemicals in processed foods such as artificial flavourings, colourings and preservatives may cause mood swings in some individuals. Similarly, a high-sugar diet may also impact your temperament. If your anxiety gets worse after eating, be sure to observe your eating habits. Eliminate processed foods, stay hydrated and eat a healthy diet for optimum results.
Drink Herbal Teas
A cup of chamomile tea is a common home remedy to calm fragile nerves. Chamomile works by relaxing the muscles so the stress and tension you feel when anxiety strikes is soothed away by this herb. Due to its sedative qualities, chamomile can also be used to help combat the insomnia that is so often linked with stress.
Avoid drinking caffeinated drinks and alcohol that may cause nervousness, jitters or dependence none of which is good if you are anxious.
Try Natural Herbs
Herbal remedies can be another effective way to help ease symptoms of anxiety and depression naturally. St. John’s Wort is by far the most well-researched and proven herbal remedy for anxiety and depression. This herb is known for relieving anxiety, stress and insomnia while naturally boosting mood. St. John’s Wort is considered effective because it naturally increases levels of serotonin in the body which is often lacking in the brains of those who struggle with depression. Please remember to always speak to your health professional before using any herbs since some of them (including St. John’s Wort) may interact with some medications you currently take.
Spend Time With Pets And Animals
Dogs are said to be human’s best friend. This actually can extend to all pets that offer companionship, love and support. Regular contact with beloved pet can be instrumental to people struggling with a variety of mental health issues, including anxiety.
Organize Your Work
For many people, their biggest stressor in life is their job. While most of us cannot control everything in a workplace, it is important to focus on what we can control. When your work day is over, let it be over! Try not to bring issues from your job into your personal life. Managing your anxiety should not come at the expense of your happiness (or your family’s). If you need to discuss issues relating to your job, find a trusted health care professional who can help you find coping strategies.
Make Time For Fun
Doing things that you like and enjoy puts your mind at rest and takes it away from your problems, giving the body and mind plenty of time to recover from any anxious moods. How it works is when your mind is not focussed on any particular worry or concern, it does not produce a stress response. Every time you focus on non-anxious thing, your body and mind start to calm down and relax. Making time for fun and balancing it between work is one of the most important things in creating emotional wellbeing.
Listening to enjoyable music and watching comedy movies is another great way to combat depression naturally. We all have a few favourite songs that lift our mood and spirit the moment we hear it. We also have our favourite comedy movies that bring back a sudden laughter every time we think of particular scenes. Music and comedies have a truly powerful influence on your mood that can pull you out of a slump and put you on top of your game as if by magic. Make sure you put it to a test when your depression kicks in.
Maintain Good Relationships With Family And Friends
Having a strong social network (particularly family and friends) is a great way to feel happier, supported and less stressed. Having friends at work is also good for your wellbeing. We spend so much time at work these days that it is vital we form friendly and positive relationships for our own wellbeing.
Get Natural Sunlight
Believe it or not but getting sunlight is yet another great way to combat depression naturally. Get at least 15 minutes of sunlight a day and observe the difference. Sunlight is instrumental in the synthesis of vitamin D in the body. Vitamin D has been linked to keeping serotonin (happy hormone) levels elevated in the brain. Stimulated by sunlight, serotonin levels are what you want to keep elevated during the day in order to keep depression at bay.
When you are feeling anxious or depressed, trying the above solutions may help calm you down and lift your spirit. Remember though that although home remedies may help ease anxiety, they do not replace professional help. Increased anxiety may require therapy or prescription medication. Make sure you talk to your health professional about your concerns.