What can I replace antidepressants with?
If you don’t want to take antidepressants, there are a variety of other options to consider. In fact, if you’ve been diagnosed with mild depression, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends that doctors try other treatments first before prescribing medication.
If you’re taking antidepressants, you might want to consider other therapy and support options in addition to your medication.
Therapy that involves talking
Doctors should provide you some sort of talking therapy or counselling, according to the NICE recommendations for managing depression. Cognitive behavioral therapy is frequently used in this situation (CBT). Therapy may be used instead of or in addition to antidepressants.
For more information on the numerous types of therapy that are available, visit our pages on talking therapy and counselling.
Mindfulness is a means of focusing entirely on the present moment. According to several research, practicing mindfulness can aid in the treatment of depression.
To treat mental health issues more officially, some structured mindfulness-based therapies have been established. For example, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) supports mindfulness-based cognitive therapy for the treatment of depression.
Therapies involving the arts and creativity
Painting, clay work, music, and theatre therapy are examples of arts and creative treatments that can help you express your feelings. They can assist you in dealing with your symptoms, especially if talking about how you’re feeling is tough for you.
Ecotherapy is a sort of therapeutic treatment that entails participating in outdoor activities in the natural environment. Working on a conservation project or gardening are examples of this. You can also go for a walk or ride your bike through the woods or other natural regions.
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Alternative and complementary therapies
Complementary and alternative therapy can help some people manage their symptoms. Aromatherapy, reflexology, or acupuncture are examples of such treatments. If you decide to keep taking your prescription, complementary therapies may help you manage some of the adverse effects.
Antidepressants and other types of drugs can interact with some natural therapies. So, if you’re considering about taking a herbal treatment with a prescription, check with your doctor or pharmacist to see if it’s okay.
St John’s wort is a herbal remedy that can be used to treat depression and anxiety symptoms. It is accessible for purchase without a prescription.
The effects of St John’s Wort, as well as the proper dosage and how it interacts with other medications, are all unknown. It’s best to consult with your doctor before taking it, especially if you’re already on any medications.
Take care of your physical health
Consider the foods and beverages you consume. A healthy, well-balanced diet can help you manage some of your symptoms. Drinking plenty of water is also beneficial to your mental health. For further information, see our sections on food and mood. Our pages on eating disorders may be of assistance if you have a tough connection with food and eating.
Make an effort to be more active. Many people feel that engaging in regular physical activity improves their mood, increases their energy, and keeps them grounded in reality. For further information, see our sections on physical activity and mental health.