Depression is a complex mood disorder that can cause feelings of sadness, despair, or loss of interest in activities that the individual once enjoyed. There are a number of factors that can influence the occurrence of depression such as genetic predisposition, personality, hormonal imbalance, stress, brain chemistry, and inflammation. While this condition is more commonly seen in women, it can affect men in a different way such as feelings of irritability, anger, and discouragement.
It is also not uncommon to see depression in people as a result of another illness. And, in fact, our Toronto naturopath, Dr. Steyr, has seen many patients that come in looking for natural treatment options for depression who are also dealing with some type of digestive disorder as well.
How we can help
Whether you are looking for natural treatment options for depression as a main health concern, or as a result from another health concern (for example, depression can occur in people with hypothyroidism and cancer), our beginning process is the same. Our naturopathic doctor starts by taking an in-depth medical history and a physical examination. Since research has shown a connection between depression and inflammation, he will need to thoroughly review your diet and lifestyle to assess potential triggers of inflammation.
Another important step will be to look at levels of stress in your life, and if necessary, order some lab work to check the levels of your stress hormones. For example, a lot of people who are experiencing burnout may be misdiagnosed with depression. A hormone imbalance such as low testosterone in males, and problems with estrogen in females, can also affect our mental health.
After the initial appointment, our naturopath will come up with a treatment plan that will involve diet and lifestyle modifications, and where necessary, support with natural products. This diet and lifestyle protocol will also include methods for reducing inflammation in the body. For the short term while the person is healing, we can also use natural products to help boost serotonin levels to help balance out the mood. We prefer to use this as a short term method as our goal is to effect long term healing through diet and lifestyle.
Whether you’re taking medication to manage your depression or you want to do it naturally, we will come up with a treatment plan that is right for you.
How we are different
We know that managing depressive symptoms can be difficult so we are here to support you throughout your healing journey. We can offer natural products and nutrition supplements to help manage symptoms, and will provide you with support as you’re making the dietary and lifestyle changes.