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Natural remedies for anxiety

(26 Posts)
KikiTheFrog Mon 16-Nov-15 23:44:55

I am interested to know if anyone has had success with the non medication route for anxiety/depression.

I was reading about lemon balm capsules which are supposed to have a calming effect which I might try.

I have in the past tried a few different things. I am currently taking magnesium, vitamin d3 and fish oil. It might be too soon to expect any results yet. Previously I have tried inositol, kalms, St Johns wort and some homeopathic stuff which all had no effect whatsoever!

I do drink camomile tea now and again. Its not very nice but weirdly calming.

I would love to hear any suggestions. I know I am probably kidding myself but I live in hope.

OnTheEdgeToday Mon 16-Nov-15 23:51:24

Practicing mindfullness
Positive mental attitude
Deep breathing exercises
Accepting that my anxiety is just that...anxiety
Accepting that it will pass
Meditation
Binural beats
Guided meditation
All different kinds of meditiation
Law of attraction
There is also rescue remedy. You can ger it as little sweet pastels that you suck on, i dont know if they truly work. I only had two. You can also get it in the form of a spray, i think? To just squirt in your mouth.

Can you tell, i have been trying to figure this out for years? grin

Your diet. Use a diary to work out your triggers.
Triggers are important as it is awareness and awareness is the key.
I know my trigger is the outside world. As soon as i put my mind to the idea of opening my door to leave, my anxiety heightens.
I have to take propranolol for this as all other methods dont work at this moment in time.
When im under a lot of stress (as i am now) i have little control over my anxiety.
When not so stressed, a lot of those techniques i suggested are enough for me.

KikiTheFrog Tue 17-Nov-15 00:01:06

I tried rescue remedy. No good. And I can't get into mindfulness etc.

I was thinking more of herbal things or vitamins? Like medication but not iyswim.

BubsandMoo Tue 17-Nov-15 00:21:02

What's been your barriers to 'getting into' mindfulness? I'd recommend Buddhify and Headspace apps as really easy starting points.

In terms of supplements, I take 5HTP and find it helps me, so may be worth you researching. I take vit D3, magnesium, iron & B12 but that is after blood tests showed various levels of concern with those. Thyroid function is worth checking as well. EFAs like EPA/DHA are worth investigating as well. But really a clean diet in the first place is a better starting point. When I am up to the pressure of it I use Lark app to track/encourage me with healthy eating and exercise.

Whilst im recommending apps I also

BubsandMoo Tue 17-Nov-15 00:24:28

Use one called WhatsMyM3 which tracks your anxiety/depression scores (very similar questionnaire to what my CBT therapist uses at the beginning of each season) and it helps to give you an idea of where you are and whether you should be seeking more help/support etc.

Rescue remedy is homeopathic. So to scientifically minded people its not surprising that it doesn't have any effect other than placebo- that being said placebo can be very effective!

OnTheEdgeToday Tue 17-Nov-15 00:32:16

Mindfullness - i concentrate on being mindful of my breathing, mindful of each step i take, the pretty flower sitting in the grass alongside the path im walking. The tree leaves changing colour.
You can also use mindful eating, though i have never looked into it. My therapist thought it would be helpful for me, but i stuck with the mindfulness i have just described.

The apps i all use for meditation, the law of attraction and stuff - i use when going to sleep. I find it far easier focusing on guided meditation, rather than listening to the sounds of waves. The voice gives me something to pull myself away from my racing thoughts with.

The law of attraction app, i have found often has a lasting effect that follows through to the next day. It coincides very well with mindfullness, and positive mental attitude. I really seen a massive difference in my whole thought process when i wasnt dealing with a massive amount of stress.
Unfortunately, stress is obviously a major trigger for me. As i can imagine it is for many other anxiety sufferers, too.

BubsandMoo Tue 17-Nov-15 00:37:53

Stress definitely makes it things a million times harder, I agree!

What is the law of attraction app that you've found useful, OnTheEdge?

OnTheEdgeToday Tue 17-Nov-15 00:40:56

It is called the law of attraction. It has in app purchases, and most of them do need to be purchased but i found them helpful enough to buy them. It has a big 'M' as its picture.

Just looking up and reading about the law of attraction is enough to stop you in your thoughts tbh. There might be other apps similar that are free, but this is the one i have used for a few years now.

BubsandMoo Tue 17-Nov-15 00:51:06

Thanks, I'll look into it. I'm also in a phase of needing as much help as I can get at moment! Anxiety sucks.

OnTheEdgeToday Tue 17-Nov-15 08:10:33

It really does bubsandmoo sadflowers

middlings Tue 17-Nov-15 08:12:32

I took valerian for a while before bed. That definitely helped.

KikiTheFrog Tue 17-Nov-15 08:22:42

I cannot engage with meditation and mindfulness etc. I've tried but I just can't get into it. There is too much swirling around in my head. I know the purpose of these things is to calm your mind but it does not work with me sad. When I am too anxious I cannot concentrate on it and when I am not I don't think I need to do it.

Doesn't 5htp make you more anxious?

SnozBuriedUnderThePatio Tue 17-Nov-15 09:07:53

I'm trying yoga at the minute as I can't get in to mindfullness either. My anxiety is health based so spending 30 mins focusing on what my body is doing in a neutral and practical way has been nice.

BubsandMoo Tue 17-Nov-15 12:36:44

I'd say as with anything like this do the research yourself, rather than just believe what a stranger on the Internet says smile but for me 5HTP has the benefits of a SSRI but without the side effects I've personally experienced from them (physical and mental).
If you describe a difficulty with calming the mind/swirling thoughts etc I'd definitely recommend the mindfulness apps. Everyone I've ever tried acknowledges the immense difficulty of switching off those thoughts. That's kind of the point, it's not "clear your mind", it's "notice this".

Also second yoga - for me it's a kind of body mindfulness! Unfortunately can't partake right now due to injury- and injury=more anxiety- it's kind of a cruel joke!

Something else is developing a selection of distraction/calming/relaxing techniques, even write them down, so when you feel yourself being dragged to the bad place but are still aware enough to recognise it you have a go-to list of activities to choose from to get through that moment. Mine are things like adult colouring books, building lego, taking a 'luxury' shower, painting my nails, folding laundry or re-organising a drawer or cupboard. Things that I have to physically do and need a bit of my mind to concentrate on them basically.

I think dealing with anxiety is very much about building your own personal toolkit of coping strategies & support to allow you to cope with your current reality whilst you work on identifying causes/triggers and accessing treatment/therapies if needed.

OnTheEdgeToday Tue 17-Nov-15 13:53:45

Completely agree. Anxiety is just as unique as the invidivudal. What affects some peoples anxiety levels may not affect others. The same applies with coping techniques.

Im unsure if others have misunderstood mindful meditation - especially guided. Your thoughts do keep racing, and the apps always, always say somewhere "your mind may drift to other things, but that is ok because a part if your subconscious is still listening. Just bring your focus back when you can" - so it doesnt dismiss the fact your thoughts do wander, and you dont feel bad thar they have when the do as there is no pressure to stay focused...because a part of your mind is still listening.

I listened lastnight and half way through i realised i was stuck in full blown visuals and thoughts of a part of my day earlier on. Once i realised, i was able to listen to the voice again.
The more you do this, the longer you can focus.

Candlefairy101 Tue 17-Nov-15 13:59:19

Can I just ask what time people take their vitamins such as vitamin B12 and vitamin D?

Do you take them in the morning as an upper or at night invade they give you a stomach upset?

I've just bought some today but haven't taken them yet

OnTheEdgeToday Tue 17-Nov-15 14:07:34

I dont take b12 as i find my urine goes bright yellow which indictates my b12 levels are fine. Proven also by blood tests.
My vitamin d im supposed to take twice a day, when i take them its usually one in the morning and one in the early evening. I dont have any side effects, other than with the b12

Ancienchateau Tue 17-Nov-15 14:16:05

Everyone is different op but this is what I've tried:

Used to take something called Relora for anxiety which really helped.

Don't get on with 5HTP - it gives me crazy dreams and I feel more jittery on it.

Didn't find St John's Wort any good until I tried max strength. I only take it in winter months and usually only have to take it for a month at a time.

KikiTheFrog Tue 17-Nov-15 15:44:45

I have just bought lemon balm capsules. Will report back on them.

BubsandMoo Tue 17-Nov-15 16:52:46

I take my 5HTP in the evening as I've found that work best for me in getting a good sleep. Iron with my evening meal as reduces constipation as a side effect (not really an issue with my IBS anyway). The rest I take in the morning, mainly just to spread out when I am swallowing pills as later in the day tend to need more painkillers. As well as normal daily D3 I take in a combo calcium/joint care supplement, I take a super high strength one three times a week, prescribed by the GP following blood tests

fuzzywuzzy Tue 17-Nov-15 16:55:04

Star flower oil and ginseng are good for anxiety.

Have you spoken to anyone about your anxiety is anything going on in your life that might be contributing to it?

KikiTheFrog Tue 17-Nov-15 22:23:21

I havent really spoken to anyone professionally about my anxiety. Been to the docs a few times over the years and was given medication but no counselling. The main thing going on in my life that I am stressing about is dd16 and a bit of a rough year with her, to say the least. But tbh if it wasn't her I was concerned with, it would be something else I'm sure. My mind likes to have reasons to worry so I tend to latch onto something and away I go. It becomes like an awful obsession. Its crazy. I know what I'm doing but get sucked into it every time.

I'll get over it. I always do. Until the next thing comes along sad

OnTheEdgeToday Wed 18-Nov-15 13:45:08

Kiki counselling is really helpful. I found it a lot better than medication.
Someone to share my worries with at the least, as i have difficulty sharing as i know how irrational they can be. To a non sufferer, the worries can appear quite silly (in my mind, anyway) and so i tend to air my worries on forums or keep them to myself. Keeping them to myself just escalates them, i have found. So it is maybe something worth looking into?

I am exactly the same with obsessive worries. I also obsessively purchase things to ease my anxiety. I have too many coats and boots that have been bought on impulse during anxiety spikes blush that may be an ocd side, i dont know.

BubsandMoo Wed 18-Nov-15 13:48:07

You can self refer for CBT within the NHS, if you google 'IAPT' + your health trust you should be able to find some info. I did this, and had an assessment via telephone first to confirm suitability. The wait wasn't too long either, from first phone call to starting CBT was less than 6 weeks.

KikiTheFrog Wed 18-Nov-15 15:26:39

Thanks everyone. I am just so scared of going for counselling but I am getting to the stage where I feel I must do it. Trying to pluck up the courage to take the first step.

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