2265 North Clybourn Avenue    Chicago, IL 60614    P: 773.296.6700     F: 773.296.1131

Important Depression Update

Click here for the original post.

For many susceptible women, the combination of holiday stress and the dark short days of winter trigger a flare-up or first-time appearance of depression. If it happens to you, you’re not alone. Epidemiologists (who chart the incidence of disease) now believe that up to 10% of people suffer from depression, and that after pain, depression is the second most common cause of disability.

The November 27, 2006, issue of Archives of Internal Medicine published what is probably the most important discussion about the treatment of depression in years. After reviewing the care of 12,355 patients all over the US, researchers concluded that the most effective long-term treatment was collaborative care. This approach is exactly what it sounds like: the more individuals involved with treatment, the better.

Some of you with depression may have experienced drawbacks with the current treatment model. Many people get no treatment at all and, often, after several months, the depression just “goes away.” As you may remember from my book, The Triple Whammy Cure, depression is one of the low-serotonin disorders. Serotonin is a brain chemical that serves as your stress-buffer and if you’re low on it, depression occurs because stressful life events have exceeded the capacity of your serotonin buffering system. As time passes, stress can lessen (“time heals all wounds”) and your depression fades.

Another group with depression will see their doctor, who, during the ten-minute visit, may successfully diagnose depression. She may then hand you some antidepressant samples (we receive boxes of them), reschedule you in a month, and renew your prescription at that time if you both think things are better.

A third group will visit a talk therapist, like a psychologist or social worker. This helps, but unfortunately therapists can’t write prescriptions, and the talk therapy may go on longer than if you’d started taking an antidepressant.

What the study in Archives showed was that the more people involved with your care, the better your outcome and the less likely the depression would return. Given that these researchers were conventional physicians, their ideal team was predictable: a primary physician (for medication) + a talk therapist + a case manager (to coordinate care and keep in phone contact). An actual psychiatrist would be available but wasn’t necessarily part of this basic team.

This, to me, is a real step for conventional medicine in the direction of a more holistic approach – that is, taking care of the needs of the whole patient. From our own experience at WholeHealth Chicago, we find that when adding other treatments, results are obtained even faster and for longer durations. We may include bodywork therapies like Healing Touch or traditional Chinese medicine (acupuncture and Chinese herbs), homeopathy, and, if needed, nutritional counseling. I certainly prescribe antidepressants when they’re needed, but try to start first with natural therapies like fish oil, St. John’s wort, 5HTP, SAMe, and light boxes.

The points to remember are simply:
• If you’re depressed, you’re not alone. Every tenth person you see is either being treated for depression or needs treatment.
• The worst treatment is to do nothing. Certain cultures, like the Japanese, are expected to live with it as part of life. They’re not a happy crowd.
• A real bout of depression requires more than just an antidepressant. Ask your doctor for a referral to a therapist for some talk therapy. If she balks, find a therapist on your own. You’ll generally only need a few sessions and most health insurance pays something toward coverage. Conversely, if you’ve been in talk therapy for weeks and you’re making little progress, ask your doctor about medication.
• Take a self-care holistic approach and consider other therapies along with your conventional ones. Use the steps outlined in The Triple Whammy Cure.


Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, delicious and time-saving recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

BIRTHDAY

Health Tips

Dr. Edelberg’s Health Tips contain concise bits of advice, medical news, nutritional supplement and pharmaceutical updates, and stress relief ideas. With every Health Tip, you’ll also receive an easy, delicious, and healthful recipe.

When you sign up to receive Health Tips, you can look forward to Dr. Edelberg’s smart and very current observations arriving in your in-box weekly. They’re packed with helpful information and are often slightly irreverent. One of the most common responses to the tips is “I wish my doctor talked to me like this!”

Quick Connect

Get One Click Access to our

patient-portal

The Knowledge Base

Patient education is an integral part of our practice. Here you will find a comprehensive collection of staff articles, descriptions of therapies and nutritional supplements, information addressing your health concerns, and the latest research on nutritional supplements and alternative therapies.

Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

Upcoming Workshops

**Pain Relief with Myofascial Balls
Tuesday, October 29, 6-8pm
With Renee Zambo, C-IAYT Yoga Therapist

Course Fee: $65.00
(includes WholeHealth Chicago Myofascial Release Kit, $40 value)

Does that same spot in your neck, shoulders, back or hips seem to bother you every day? Do you have joint aches and pains in the hands and feet? Would you like to learn ways to alleviate that pain and tension?

Join WholeHealth Chicago’s Yoga and Movement Therapist Renee Zambo for an evening of muscle tension release with myofascial therapy balls.

Space is limited and registration is required.
Please register online.
Call the Center for additional information at (773) 296-6700
More>>

Recent Health Tips

  • Dandruff, Fungi, and Cancer of the Pancreas

    It’s an eye-catching title, I’ll admit. But the links are quite real and further research may guide medicine in new directions of cancer prevention and treatment. It all starts in your gut microbiome, the totality of microorganisms–bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and fungi–present in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract, mouth to anus. Until recently, researchers and clinical physicians alike paid virtually no attention to the microbiome and the Read More

  • New Hope For Sinus Sufferers

    When osteopath Dr. Rob Ivker moved to Colorado in the 1980s to set up his family practice, he had no idea that when he stepped off the plane he’d succumb to symptoms of chronic sinusitis that just wouldn’t go away: stuffy nose, thick mucus, pressure behind his cheekbones and above his eyebrows, dull aching headache, and thick goopy drainage in the back of his throat. Read More

  • Director of IV Therapies Katie McManigal, BSN, ANP

    Most people at some point in their lives have had an intravenous (IV) line. An adept nurse warned you about the tiny pinch of the needle as it was smoothly inserted and taped in place.  Then the  fluid dangling above your head slowly started making its way through a tube and into your body. IVs are all over the place in hospitals. They’re seen in Read More

October Sale – Save 20% off UltraMeal Rice

UltraMeal RICE is a tasty, non-dairy, nutritionally fortified, powdered meal replacement for those who want to support healthy body composition but may be sensitive to soy.

Click here to take advantage of this month’s promotion!