I was first prescribed antidepressants in 2000. Ever since, I have been on and off these drugs, mostly because the idea of taking them made me uncomfortable.
It was a mixture of guilt, probably not unlike the guilt some athletes must feel for taking a prohibited doping substance; shame for needing a pill that had such a profound impact on my behaviour; and frustration with the recurrent episodes of depression that would bring me back to the antidepressants I would then quickly abandon.
I broke this cycle when my daughters were born and I realised that it would be irresponsible to stop treatment because being a good father meant having a stable mood. Continue reading
This is another recent study supporting the theory of GABA’s effect on depression.
The GABAergic deficit hypothesis of depression states that a deficit of GABAergic transmission in defined neural circuits is causal for depression.
Conversely, an enhancement of GABA transmission, including that triggered by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or ketamine, has antidepressant effects. Continue reading
Cortical GABAergic Dysfunction in Stress and Depression: New Insights for Therapeutic Interventions – free full-text /30914923/ – Front. Cell. Neurosci., March 2019
This is a recent article with many technical details explaining how GABA is involved in stress, depression, and anxiety.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a debilitating illness characterized by neuroanatomical and functional alterations in limbic structures, notably the prefrontal cortex (PFC), that can be precipitated by exposure to chronic stress
For decades, the monoaminergic deficit hypothesis of depression provided the conceptual framework to understand the pathophysiology of MDD. Continue reading
A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial of Pregnenolone for Bipolar Depression – free full-text /PMC4200497/ – Jul 2014
Depression in bipolar disorder (BPD) is challenging to treat. Therefore, additional medication options are needed. In the current report, the effect of the neurosteroid pregnenolone on depressive symptoms in BPD was examined.
Pregnenolone was well tolerated. The results suggest that pregnenolone may improve depressive symptoms in patients with BPD and can be safely administered.
That’s an unusually positive note with which to end the abstract, and I think there’s some truth to it – at least for me. After finding multiple articles about how neurosteroids are helpful for depression and anxiety, I started experimenting. Continue reading
The GABAergic Deficit Hypothesis of Major Depressive Disorder – free full-text /PMC3412149/ – Mol Psychiatry. – Apr 2011
This is a very technical article on a newer theory about what “causes” depression and anxiety.
My increasing desperation during bouts of increasing anxiety lately has motivated me to search for alternate routes of treating it (since I cannot have benzodiazepines due to taking opioids). It feels like my depression and anxiety always come together, so any new idea about treating depression gives me hope it could also alleviate my anxiety.
Here we summarize clinical and preclinical evidence supporting a central and causal role of GABAergic deficits in the etiology of depressive disorders. Increasing evidence points to an association between major depressive disorders (MDDs) and diverse types of GABAergic deficits.
A new survey highlights the significant impact of rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) on mental health.
The survey of more than 900 RMD patients revealed that pain had caused one in 10 to have suicidal thoughts in the previous four weeks. Pain also caused 58 percent to feel that everything was unmanageable for them.
This is a feeling I know only too well: the sinking sensation every time I think about how I’m going to get through this life, feeling completely overwhelmed by even trivial tasks, running around in mental circles looking for a way out of an unbearable situation… Continue reading
A multidisciplinary team of researchers from Stanford University and the VA Palo Alto Healthcare System recently published findings that indicate patients taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (ssRIs) and treated with prodrug opioids to manage postsurgical pain may have worse pain outcomes than those prescribed active opioids (PLoS One 2019;14:e0210575).
“An anesthesiologist came to us with information about this relationship that’s showing up in bench labs,” Dr. Hernandez-Boussard told Pain Medicine News, explaining how one of her co-authors was intrigued by an increasing body of research pointing to potentially antagonistic interactions between prodrug opioids and ssRIs affecting the cytochrome enzyme CYP2D6 in the liver (Acad Emerg Med 2014;21:879-885). Continue reading
Stressed out? Your dog may feel it too, study suggests – by Jeremy Rehm, washingtonpost.com – June 6, 2019
After reading this, I feel very sorry for my poor little dog. We spend almost all our time together (I take him everywhere with me in the car), so we’re extremely close and affected by each other.
I know that how we really feel cannot be hidden from our dogs, no matter how well our “acting OK” fools other humans, but I didn’t realize the depth and intensity of this invisible effect. Now I have another reason to get upset: my constant stress and worry about getting sufficient pain relief, not to mention the pain itself, is hurting my dog too.
When dog owners go through a stressful period, they’re not alone in feeling the pressure — their dogs feel it too, a new study suggests. Continue reading
Psychopathological manifestations of joint hypermobility and joint hypermobility syndrome/ Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, hypermobility type:… – PubMed – NCBI: The link between connective tissue and psychological distress revised. – Mar 2015 – partial repost from Latest EDS Research: March 2015
Having suffered from crippling anxiety in episodes lasting for days to weeks, I started researching, hoping to find some clues for new treatments. Instead, I found numerous studies showing that my anxiety is probably another “symptom” of my EDS and thus “incurable”.
This is just another painful feeling (in addition to physical pain) that I’m doomed to suffer for the rest of my life.
Psychological distress is a known feature of generalized joint hypermobility (gJHM), as well as of its most common syndromic presentation, namely Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, hypermobility type (a.k.a. joint hypermobility syndrome – JHS/EDS-HT), and significantly contributes to the quality of life of affected individuals.
Association of Hormonal Contraception With Depression – JAMA Network – Charlotte Wessel Skovlund, MSc1; Lina Steinrud Mørch, PhD1; Lars Vedel Kessing, MD, DMSc2; et al. – November 2016
Question: Is use of hormonal contraception associated with treatment of depression?
Spoiler alert: the answer is a resounding “yes”. all the patients who didn’t get antidepressants (which require a pain or depression diagnosis).
Progesterone is in all birth-control pills, yet women seeking contraception are given these pills almost routinely, and never with the warning that they could cause depression.
This could explain why women tend to be more depressed than men.
Findings: In a nationwide prospective cohort study of more than 1 million women living in Denmark, an increased risk for first use of an antidepressant and first diagnosis of depression was found among users of different types of hormonal contraception, with the highest rates among adolescents. Continue reading