It’s been estimated by WHO that depression is going to be the leading cause of disability in the world this year [Reddy, 2010]. Many people are suffering from the symptoms of depression and looking for ways to help ease their symptoms.
Women are affected more than men with twice as many women than men are estimated to be experiencing depression [World Health Organization, 2020]. Most people who may be depressed, opt for more holistic options and search for natural remedies for treatment [James Lake, 2017].
Currently, there are many innovative, integrative medicinal solutions to manage depression in our highly advanced medicine world now than there have ever been. From guided meditations specifically for mental health to herbal supplements that boost brain function, and a combination of integrative treatments, the holistic treatments options are plentiful.
A more overlooked treatment option, Chiropractic care has been around for decades, and has been proven to lessen the symptoms of those with depression [Christopher T. Arick, 2016].
Chiropractic care is an alternative medicine option that has been around for years in the U.S. and some scholars believe it has been practiced in Western countries for thousands of years [Chiro One Wellness Centers, 2018]. It’s been recommended by the CDC as a holistic remedy for pain to reduce opioid addiction for pain management and withdrawal symptoms [American Chiropractic Association, 2016].
Chiropractic care provides so many benefits, it’s surprising that it is overlooked when it comes to easing symptoms of those with mental health symptoms.
In a study of female patients, those who received weekly chiropractic adjustments saw a decrease in the most common symptoms in those with depression such as chronic pain, stress and headaches. The women in the study also saw the benefits of care years after beginning treatment [Christopher T. Arick, 2016].
Chiropractic care can be considered a hidden gem when it comes to mental health. The benefits and impact of the holistic treatment are studied to have lasting effects with years of care.
Other benefits of chiropractic care
Cognitive abilities such as memory, decision making, and understanding may be declined in those with symptoms of depression [Christopher T. Arick, 2016]. The nerves in the upper neck provide an important gateway between the brain and body’s communication system.
If there is interference, or what chiropractors call a subluxation in that part of the spine, the communication between the brain and body is difficult to get through.
That causes a delay or decline in cognitive function which is a symptom of depression. An adjustment moves this part of the spine back into its natural position so that the line of communication through the nerves can flow more easily.
After receiving an adjustment, one of the benefits that many patients describe feeling afterwards is a boost in energy. Many people report having a continued increase of energy after having continued adjustments for long periods of time.
In those who may have symptoms of depression, energy levels may be low. Chiropractic adjustments may be able to increase energy levels to create a positive mood to be able to partake in normal daily activities [Christopher T. Arick, 2016].
The spine is considered a gateway to all the systems of the body. Just about every message the body sends to and from each area and nerve of the body goes through the spine. This is an important link when treating depressive symptoms. The gut produces serotonin and melatonin which are the two most important chemicals that keep our body’s mood balanced.
When the chemicals become unbalanced, symptoms in those with depression can occur. Many of the drugs that are given to patients that are diagnosed with depression contain chemicals that are similar in structure to serotonin and melatonin.
Although it is true that the gut can function on its own, there is still a pathway from the gut to the brain through the spine that may become interfered. Chiropractic adjustments may be able to restore the communication between the gut & brain to help with the chemical balance and mood regulation [Evrensel & Ceylan, 2015].
Treatment of depression and mental health symptoms are unique to everyone. Talk with your provider about the option that’s best for you. And if you or someone you know battles with depression, know that you are not alone. There are treatment options, support communities and resources available for you or your loved one.
If you or someone you know are in an immediate crisis, get help by calling the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or visit The International Association for Suicide Prevention [www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/] to be connected to a trained counselor at a crisis center nearby.
American Chiropractic Association. (2016, March 18). Chiropractic Physicians Applaud CDC Guideline on Opioid Prescribing; Encourage Conservative Options First for Pain . Arlington, VA, USA. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.acatoday.org/News-Publications/Newsroom/News-Releases/Chiropractic-Physicians-Applaud-CDC-Guideline-on-Opioid-Prescribing-Encourage-Conservative-Options-First-for-Pain
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2019, December 5). Depression Among Women. USA. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/depression/index.htm
Chiro One Wellness Centers. (2018, October 02). The History of Chiropractic. Oak Brook, IL, USA. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.chiroone.net/bewell/the-history-of-chiropractic
Christopher T. Arick, D. M. (2016, October 18). Chiropractic Management of a Patient With Chronic Fatigue: A Case Report. National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine. Bethesda, MD, US. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5106444/
Evrensel, A., & Ceylan, M. E. (2015, December 31). The Gut-Brain Axis: The Missing Link in Depression. National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine. Bethesda, MD, USA. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4662178/
James Lake, M. (2017, August 11). Urgent Need for Improved Mental Health Care and a More Collaborative Model of Care. National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine. Bethesda, MD, USA. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5593510/
Reddy, M. S. (2010, July). Depression: The Disorder and the Burden. Bethesda, MD, USA. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3137804/
World Health Organization. (2020). Gender and Women’s Mental Health. Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.who.int/mental_health/prevention/genderwomen/en/
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