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  1. I would like to echo Theresa’s thoughts,and add that in my clinical experience there are individuals who need antidepressants to adjust their symptoms so that they are receptive to meditation and other non-medicinal interventions. As a psychotherapist working with clients with clinical depression I educate them on the current research of the pros and cons of combined medication vs. medication-psychotherapy (incl. meditation), or psychotherapy alone. I incorporate meditation with most of my depressed clients, including Mindfulness and other types depending on the cllinical needs and preferences of each client. I believe it is important to have a personal practice along with formal training on incorporating meditation in psychotherpay prior to working with clinically depressed individuals in this way.

  2. I wanted to let people be aware of one of the side effects of going off medication, which is SSRI Discontinuation Syndrome. I think we owe it to our clients/patients to give them information that even the prescribing physician may not have given them. Although I stress meditation over medication, some clients are so swayed by the meds bias they go on medication anyway. I honor their autonomy in this, but give them information so that they can make the most informed decision. I find it chilling that we accept so many side effects as “OK”, and so mistrust our own bodies and the power of relationship to heal.

  3. I love the idea of considering replacing medication with meditation. Thanks for sharing the data on the study showing mediatation’s effectiveness over medication in preventing relapse in depression. We need this kind of hard data to combat the over-reliance we have today on medications that carry significant risks and whose benefits have been overrated by an industry that greatly benefits from their sale and promotion.

  4. Here is a book I think every clinician should read:
    Comfortably Numb–How Psychiatry is Medicating a Nation, by Charles Barber
    It is far more empowering for clients to know they can do something within themselves instead of throwing money at Big Pharma.

  5. Thank you for posting this article; it has drawn my attention and subtly provided an alternative perspective.
    Could you consider communicating the message in terms of value of keeping naturally well? Pharmaceutical beasts are hungry of money and are skilful and powerful lobbyists to dominate the market with sublime communication messages. They understand human thinking and conditioning. I admire the great collaborative work you do to create a shift in information sharing. Rather than focusing on highlighting the problem – could you consider to make the point of balance more clear, deeper and direct? People can’t think, words get lost in translation, call to action is required.
    My hypothesis is: “There aren’t quick fixes in medicine and pharmaceutical treatment. No problem can be resolved without exchanging one for another”.
    Only through self-discipline, sometimes even through sacrifice to your highest value and most of all prioritizing your wellness, you can keep an inner balance. What’s your experience?
    Kindly,
    Joan

    • Your posting really sttieghraned me out. Thanks!

    • Hey.I’m a 100% non synthetically-medicated psithocyc kid. Diagnosed schizophrenic and have very serious positive symptoms and equally horrible negative symptoms. Here is what I do to keep on top of the depression that is one of my negative symptoms.1) Omega 3 Fish Oil. You may have to buy a brand manufactured for kids because adult brands don’t tend to be filtered for mercury and you DEFINITELY want a mercury-free product. 2) Multi-vitamins. Take something with a very high iron, vitamin D and magnesium.3) Exercise. If you’re overweight, a healthier bodyweight will help you out. If you’re not, exercise will still release endorphins. Personally when I’m at my worst I do yoga from flashcards, (this is when I cannot leave the house) boxing, and jumping jacks while a music channel (usually rock but I figure anything with a good beat that you like listening to when you’re happy will work) is on. I also go running, when I’m not as bad, usually in a forest on warm days or at a beach on cold days, somewhere where I’ll be alone with nature and my ipod. 4) Music. I mentioned the music channel & ipod above, but I also blare Queen, Bowling for Soup, Blink-182 and the All-American Rejects (aka nobody who sings about death, depression, suicide, sadness, or has a downbeat – less than 4/4 – track) and I HATE IT. It makes me MAD and MAD is better than depressed. It is more productive. ;]5) I force myself to do things I enjoy when I’m happy. I take a shower with the nice smelling soap and warm my towels on the radiator, I watch the funny episodes of Firefly and my favourite films and read magazines and This Book Will Save Your Life (A.M Homes – it’s my favourite book). And if that sucks, I do the laundry and hoover. For me what works is just keeping moving. Then even if my whole day sucks and I can’t bear it, the next day I can wake up to something good I’ve done and maybe feel better for it – or I have fond memories of my favourite movie etc.6) My favourite one – I read a book I’ve written. It’s a big old book that I bought ages ago and when I’m happy, I write things I like in the book. Stupid stuff like, Xander from Buffy, and the sound from line arrays, and Diamond 4’s, and sherbert lemons, and Harry Potter 1, and Gandhi quotes, things that have no consequence. If I’m only mildly down, it can get me back up.7) Meditation. Just sit quietly and concentrate on not concentrating on anything. If that makes sense. Don’t allow yourself to have thoughts. Let your only thought be the thought that stops you thinking about anything. It sounds complex but you probably get my meaning. I like to meditate either in the dark in my room but the sunlight is good for depression so I force myself to sit in the middle of the living room with all the shades open in the sunlight. Therapy. Not from a councillor – from a psychologist, in particular a psychologist who is a qualified Cognitive Behavioural Therapist – these people are like GOLDDUST. They will teach you how to get through your worst moments and help you tailor your recovery techniques to your own personality. Plus, they’re also usually really cool not-up-themselves people. Interview a few different psych’s if you can, and if they’re in an office and wearing a suit, don’t bother. Find someone who wears jeans and listens to the music you like and likes the TV shows you like, so you geniunely like their company and that way, you’ll get a lot more out of your time with them – it’ll be more friendly and less clinical. And that in itself will lift your mood.Please bear in mind that the most important thing to have to get over depression without meds is psychological resilience. You need to be the type of depressed person who says, this sucks, but I WILL GET THROUGH THIS. I WILL NOT GIVE UP.. I WILL FORCE MYSELF THROUGH THIS. If you’re prone to giving up (I am not saying this is something to be ashamed of, it’s just something to be honest about – I understand fully that being a can’t-be-f*cking-bothered/don’t-want-to-can’t-make-me depressive is horrific and not something the depressive can help) you may have to come to terms with the fact that you may need a low dosage of meds (Citalopram is good in low doses) to get you through, and you may have to rely more heavily on therapy. Either way, get a CBT and remember you are not alone, and you should never give up on yourself.’When all you’ve got to keep is strong, move along. And even when your hope is gone, move along.’Good luck. Was this answer helpful?

  6. Ruth
    Just because Big-Pharma has hijacked Medicine does not mean you go gentle into that good night.
    “God damn the pusher man”
    Keep moving to take your profession back, but be aware that you are in danger of Big-Pharma’s wrath.