Depression sufferers are increasingly looking for natural medicines to help them manage their depression symptoms, according to research.
The research, which was commissioned to mark the beginning of Depression Awareness Week, revealed that 83 per cent of respondents would have liked more information on non-drug/ natural supplements which can help depression, whilst 64 per cent of those polled agreed that more support from the NHS would also have helped them to cope better with their depression.
Of those who had tried both natural medicines and pharmaceutical medication, 53 per cent said that Omega 3 / fish oil / EPA supplements had a “good to very good” effect on their depression, whereas 44 per cent said that side effects from pharmaceutical medication had a “bad’ to very bad” effect on them.
Dr. Wendy Denning, a GP with over 20 years’ experience commented: “Over recent years, I have certainly noticed more people in my clinic with mental health problems such as depression. It’s well known that there can be a variety of side effects associated with pharmaceutical depression medicine, such as Prozac, and so I think it is greatly encouraging to see that more people are looking for natural alternatives to help them cope with their depression. To my patients, I recommend a good high-EPA omega 3 supplement alongside their other medicines.”
In the survey of 100 people, commissioned by the online community, DepressionCanBeFun.com and Vegepa EPA from Igennus Healthcare Nutrition, who have suffered from depression, almost half said that they had taken a combination of both pharmaceutical medications and natural medicines / nutritional supplements to manage their depression symptoms, whereas only a quarter of people had taken pharmaceutical medication alone, and natural medicines and nutritional supplements alone.
The survey also revealed that the symptoms, which were most noticeable to people before they realised they had depression, were: experiencing tiredness and loss of energy; followed by persistent sadness; and loss of self-confidence and self-esteem.
Helen McNallen, founder of DepressionCanBeFun.com commented: “The main point of my website is to encourage people suffering with depression to engage with each other so that they do not feel alone. It is interesting to see that attitudes towards depression are changing and people are more vocal about what they want and how they want to manage their depression. I recommend a quality EPA supplement, such as Vegepa, which contains 70% marine EPA and is a very high quality fish oil.”
Also, when asked what aspects of their life would make them happier, respondents replied better overall health, more love, more leisure time, more holidays, less pressure from work, less pressure from family life, more sex, and more money.