Actress Kristen Bell recently opened up about her struggle with anxiety and depression, as reported on People.com. She made the point that no one should be ashamed to ask for help, and she is right. The question is, what kind of help is best?
By now, you know our stance on antidepressants. They have many serious side effects, including worsening depression, and will only mask the symptoms without solving the underlying cause of the problem. If a fire alarm is going off and you turn off the alarm, that doesn’t put out the fire. You need to find the underlying cause of your anxiety and depression, and often a hormone deficiency is the culprit. So why not start there?
Your brain is very sensitive to hormone depletion. If you don’t have enough thyroid, for instance, and your hormones are out of balance, you’re going to experience symptoms of depression and anxiety. It has been well established that depression is a symptom of low thyroid function. Without adequate levels of thyroid hormone and its proper utilization, you can also experience symptoms such as anxiety, mood swings, brain fog and poor concentration.
Progesterone stimulates the brain’s GABA receptors, the feel-good, calming neurotransmitters, so you can see why you may become sad when you are deficient in progesterone, especially from the big drop in progesterone that occurs after childbirth. Actress Hayden Panettiere is still battling post-partum depression after the birth of her daughter in 2014. She checked into a rehab facility last year, and announced last week that she is seeking treatment again. We have to wonder if her doctors ever evaluated her for hormone imbalance. Progesterone may be the missing link to helping her feel well again.
What You Can Do
If you often feel anxious and depressed, find out if you have a hormone deficiency first. Note: It is important for you to know that hypothyroidism often goes undiagnosed by doctors who only rely on the TSH blood test for a diagnosis. More often than not, this lab test fails the patient, and the cause of your depression will forever remain a mystery.
Caution: Do not stop taking an antidepressant cold turkey.
If you are currently taking antidepressants, you should never stop them abruptly since they are addicting and can cause severe, dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Work with your doctor to wean off of them slowly and safely. We recommend reading, “The Antidepressant Solution: A Step-by-Step Guide to Safely Overcoming Antidepressant Withdrawal, Dependence, and ‘Addiction,’” by Joseph Glenmullen, M.D. This is a great resource to give to your doctor.
6 Ways Hormones Affect Your Mental Health
Hormones do have a profound effect on brain health. Struggling with anxiety and depression does not necessarily mean you have a mental illness – it could be as simple as a hormone imbalance. Are you wondering if hormonal imbalance is at the root of your depression? Click on the below button to get your complimentary download guide, 6 Ways Hormones Affect Your Mental Health.