Anxiety and Depression: Why a more holistic approach is needed for treatment - Baobab Health

Anxiety and Depression: Why a more holistic approach is needed for treatment

Anxiety and depression are two of the most common mental health disorders that affect people, from all walks of life, worldwide. In fact, depression is one of the most common causes of disability worldwide.

For decades we have tried to treat these mental health issues with medications that target one or two neurotransmitters (brain chemicals) as some research has suggested that low amounts of certain neurotransmitters may be responsible for causing anxiety and depression. While this is true, it is only a snippet of the broader picture.

These treatments have failed as depression and anxiety rates are still on the rise.  Furthermore, anti-depressants have been shown to be no more effective than placebo.

Why is this you may ask?

It is because we have been trying to treat a complex, multifaceted disease, that involves a complex interaction between genes, diet, lifestyle and environmental factors, with one drug and only targeting one pathway in the brain. Mental health issues are far too complex for such simplistic treatment and they require multifaceted treatments to address the underlying causes.

If you suffer from anxiety or depression, consider booking in an experienced holistic health practitioner (e.g. naturopath), who will help you identify the underlying physiological drivers of depression and anxiety, as well as the social/environmental factors. Find someone who will take a holistic approach to your treatment (using referrals if need be). Treatment should always involve diet and lifestyle interventions (with potential for herbal and nutritional supplementation), as well as psychological interventions that will help address these underlying causes. This may require the help of two or more practitioners.