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Psychological health – depression, anxiety and PTSD

Most of us will experience some form of psychological health issue at some point in our lives. Depression is a low mood which can last several days, weeks or sometimes years and can be present throughout someone’s life. Many things can cause depression, such as a trauma like losing a loved one, family history, personality and giving birth.

Anxiety is a natural human response when we feel that we are under threat in some way. However, it can become a mental health problem if it begins to impact our lives and we feel strongly anxious about instances which are out of proportion to our feelings, and these feelings last for a long time. Panic attacks can also happen as a result of anxiety. Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health problem which we can develop after experiencing a traumatic event. Originally recognised in war veterans and called ‘shell shock’ there are many situations which can cause PTSD in varying degrees of severity, such as being in a car crash or experiencing a violent assault.

What are the symptoms of clinical depression?

There are several forms of depression with their own mental and physical symptoms, however, here is a list of potential symptoms to look out for if you think you may have depression:

  • Feeling unhappy or hopeless
  • Low self-esteem
  • Finding no pleasure in the things you would usually enjoy
  • Feeling tearful
  • Symptoms of anxiety
  • Tiredness
  • Insomnia
  • No sex drive
  • Aches and pains in all areas of the body
  • Feeling suicidal in severe cases

What are the symptoms of anxiety?

Again, anxiety can present itself in many forms, both mentally and physically, but here is a list of potential symptoms to look out for if you think you are experiencing this condition:

  • Feeling nervous or tense, unable to relax
  • Fearing the worst or having a sense of dread
  • Feeling as if the world is going too fast or too slow
  • Sensing that people can see you’re anxious and are staring at you
  • An inability to stop worrying and the feeling that something bad might happen if you stop worrying
  • Worrying about panic attacks and when they could happen
  • Needing lots of reassurance from people, or worrying that they are angry or upset with you
  • The feeling that you are losing touch with reality
  • Low mood or symptoms of depression
  • Thinking about bad experiences, or thinking about a particular situation over and over again
  • Depersonalisation – a kind of disassociation where you feel you are not connected to your mind or body, like you are watching yourself on a film
  • Derealisation – another form of disassociation where you feel disconnected from the world, as if the world is not real
  • Worrying about things that could happen in the future
  • Feeling light-headed, dizzy or nauseous

What are the symptoms of PTSD?

PTSD can present itself in many forms. However, here is a list of some of the symptoms to look out for, if you feel that you may be experiencing the condition:

  • Memories or intrusive thoughts about a particular event
  • Nightmares about a traumatic event
  • Flashbacks – as if the event is happening all over again
  • Avoiding places that remind you of a traumatic event
  • Feelings of hopelessness or depression
  • Feelings of isolation – retreating from family or friends
  • Anger and a feeling of being out of control – lashing out at others

Are there medications to help with depression, anxiety and PTSD?

There are many prescribed medications for depression, anxiety and PTSD and all have their place in traditional and modern medicine. However, many of these medications can have significant and unpleasant side-effects and if these medications are taken over a long period of time, can impact the lives of those who take them, more than the relief they offer for the condition itself. These side effects can include

  • Confusion
  • Blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness or fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Problems with balance, co-ordination or speech
  • Loss of memory or concentration
  • Upset stomach

In many cases, phycological assistance in the form of counselling can be an effective way to deal with the causes of these conditions and help the patient to overcome them either in conjunction with medication or as an alternative therapy.

How can medical cannabis help with depression, anxiety and PTSD?

A 2014 study by the Hawaii Journal of Medicine and Public Health stated that many patients who suffered with depression and anxiety experienced an improvement in their mood and ability to sleep, whilst using cannabis medicines. Introducing cannabis medication has been found to stabilise the amygdala, the part of the brain with fear response to threats. It can also help to play a role in extinguishing traumatic memories. Both effects can be therapeutic for those who suffer from PTSD. Cannabis medications can supress anxiety and aversive memory expression, without producing the significant adverse effects that traditional medications can.

Am I suitable for the relief from my depression, anxiety or PTSD at Integro Clinic?

The cause and symptoms of your specific phycological health issue with be assessed during a no obligation consultation and examination, here at Integro Medical Clinics. We can then create and recommend a suitable and effective management plan, which may include cannabis medicines as part of this plan.

When conventional treatments reach their limit, our work begins.

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