What can I do to overcome my depression without taking medicine?

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New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/14/2010 10:14 PM (GMT -6)   
I am a 25 year old female. I have not been to a doctor so I have no been diagnosed with depression, but I know I have it. I have been dealing with low self esteem, weight problems which all led to my depression. I am quite frankly still a student and cannot afford the expensive therapy sessions. What are some ways I can do to get over my depression without taking medicine?

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 10/14/2010 11:08 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm not completely sure what you can do. I understand where you are coming from. I have weight issues also. I got on meds (a very low dose) but that isn't for everyone. I don't know if you live in a big town or not, but maybe you can find a free counselor. Maybe a group session or something.

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 10/14/2010 11:21 PM (GMT -6)   

Life is full of challenges. Sometimes situations are beyond our control, and sometimes we create challenges by our own hands. It isn't always easy to face them alone. Sometimes we just need somebody to understand us. Sometimes we just need a friend. Welcome to HealingWell, and the depression forum. Here you will find members who will listen. More importantly, here you will find members who will care. You can take your existence and make it so much better for you.  We can help.

As you have not seen a doctor perhaps you want to take this quick depression quiz - here is the link and this is just for your information and not something you have to share with anyone.  http://depression.about.com/cs/diagnosis/l/bldepscreenquiz.htm
If you are a student please check and see if you can connect with a counselor at your school as this is a great source of help and information for you.

Moderator: Anxiety/Panic, Osteoarthritis, GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.

"If you can't change the world, change your world"

Elite Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 20279
   Posted 10/15/2010 12:09 AM (GMT -6)   
you gp is a good place to start. maybe you can write your feelings and experience down, as this will aid your dr to help you with the best options available to help you. medicaion may or may not be used, there are many alternatives. being a student is hard enough itself. take care onlyjesus.

with compassion, jamie.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2317
   Posted 10/15/2010 10:59 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree with Jamie. Start with your general practitioner or the campus health clinic. They can test to see if something is going on (btw, hypothyroidism can cause weight gain & depression so it's good to see a doctor to rule stuff like that out). One thing I know helped me when I gained a lot of weight was signing up for a phys ed class for a couple semesters. In addition to losing weight, physical activity can boost endorphins & make us feel better for a while. On top of that, I had a couple friends who were health science majors who helped me figure out what dreadful cafeteria foods were not 90% fat -- which meant basically salad bar, skim milk with cheerios, small servings of pasta and marinara sauce, veggies, sandwiches on wheat bread, and NO ice cream (man I loved that soft serve!). Before I knew it I had dropped 20 pounds -- after about a semester & a half.

Many campuses do offer free counseling through Campus Counseling Services or through the Graduate Psychology Department (if there is one). Even community colleges usually have someone you can talk to for free. If you can't find it through the website/directory, you can ask your Academic Advisor or Health Services where you can find help [or where a "friend" can find help]. And often meds can be covered by the university health insurance included in your registration/activity fees.

Beyond that, I would encourage you to get involved with some of the campus activities. There are always lots to choose from & unlike high school I found that people in college were not nearly so cruel about weight/appearance. Hanging out & having fun can definitely lift people's mood (if it doesn't, definitely get yourself some professional help; no one should be miserable even when they're doing fun activities).

Finally, I would suggest maybe talking to a pastor/priest (sorry if I'm assuming wrong based on your name). Often they are trained in counseling & will meet with students to help them sort through issues in their life. Some churches even have licensed therapists on staff who will meet with members/regular attendees of the church for little or no charge [my church in college had a psychologist on staff who charged me very little for sessions, $15 when I was working, $5 when I wasn't]. So that's definitely worth a try.

Hope that helps.

take care,

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/15/2010 12:22 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey, onlyjesus

As someone who has suffered from depression and who once again suffers from depression now, I can tell you that there are definitely ways to overcome your depression without medication.

Prior to this bout of depression I have been in for the last four months, I had been depression free since the summer of 2008. That last battle with depression lasted almost an entire year and I came very close to going on medication to fix the problem.

Through that whole ordeal, I tried so many things to get out of my depression. Most things failed, but some things worked and those few things that worked helped me to ultimately move on.

- One thing that made a dramatic difference for me was giving up alcohol. Right around the end of April of 2008, I decided to stop drinking completely. Prior to that, I had tried to use alcohol as a way to escape and just be with the crowd. But all that did was just make things worse. After about 3 weeks of giving up the booze, I noticed a huge difference. I was still depressed, but I was feeling so much better, both physically and emotionally. I don't know if you drink or not, but if you do, go ahead and lay off for a while.

- Another thing I did in the Spring of 2008 was join a support group via the counseling center here at my school. It was free through the school, so that really helped a lot. I stayed with the group for about 3 or 4 weeks until school got out for the summer. It was pretty depressing but helpful at the same time. Regardless of what other people's situations are, the ultimate ordeal that we all share is that we are suffering from depression. Being around others who are in your situation helps a lot. Listening to others' troubles can sort of help put yours in perspective. It's also a great way for you to be a part of another person's recovery. Knowing you've done something to help someone is a very rewarding and can help push you in the right direction as well. If you aren't already in one of these things and you have the time to join one, I encourage you to do so. If you are worried about what others might think of you because you join one of these things, don't. Your true friends will understand that you need help and will be supportive of your decision. Those who rag on you or give you a hard time for doing this are not your real friends.

- Another thing that helped was exercise. After school ended in May of 2008, I joined a local mom and pop fitness gym. It was one of the best life decisions I have ever made. Weight training and exercising paid off and by the end of the summer, I was in (at the time) the best shape of my life. Looking good and feeling good went a long way towards getting my head straightened out and was ultimately the thing that pushed me to getting out of the hell that I had been in for the last year. I also became very close friends with the couple who ran the gym.

I definitely understand that in these economic times, many people might not be able to join a gym. No worries. If your school has a rec center, go ahead and head out there and use the exercise facilities that are available. Treadmills, running paths, stationary bikes, weights -- it doesn't matter. Getting exercise is a very good way of recovering. Once again, I don't know your situation, but if you are able bodied enough to exercise, I highly encourage you to do so.

- I also radically changed my diet. During my depression, I was constantly wolfing down foods such as pizza, fries, burgers, etc. Those foods make you feel happy while you eat them, but ultimately, you end up feeling bloated, disgusting, and depressed. When I eliminated these foods from my diet and replaced them with simple, healthy foods such as apples, carrots, bananas, almonds, raisins, grilled chicken, brown rice, etc, I noticed a huge difference in both my physical and mental health. Again, in this economy, it might be a bit tough to do this, but try to do the best you can with your diet. Any little positive change that you make will move you closer to recovery.

There were some other things I did as well, but I don't want to make this post any longer than it already is. If you want me to share some more, I'd be more than happy to do so. I'm going through depression again right now, and after making many mistakes, I'm going back to my past to try and do some of those things that helped me beat depression without medicines.

Hope this helps and sorry for the length!

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 10/15/2010 2:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Here are some ideas...  (1) Spiritual growth... Read/Do "A Course In Miracles"  It a daily reading and lesson for one full year.  Its has helped me revise my perception of the world.   It a wonderful way to improve or see your true self.   It turns the tables... helps one look "within" for true knowledge.  Medication, Doctors  and the things we think we need to be happy are just a way of looking "outside" for answers when the answer was always within.   I'm am not saying you shouldn't talk to your doctor... I am saying that...that approach is one option... their are others.  
(2) Mercruy and other heavy metal cause problems in the body and brain.   You should read more about this idea.  I had my so-called  (amalgam) silver-filling removed.  This was/is part of my recovery.   A lot of illness is caused my heavy metals in our water, food and air.... especially depression.   How many amalgam filling do you have? ?
Be Well, JC    

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/15/2010 9:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Start by accepting of who you are. View things on a positive way and of course surrender your life to Jesus.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2317
   Posted 10/15/2010 10:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Just a gentle reminder to all to keep the rules in mind when posting. Especially rule 11.
We have a lot of wonderful people here from all different backgrounds & that's part of what makes HW such a warm & welcoming place for so many.


New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 10/21/2010 12:07 AM (GMT -6)   
I beleive for self-esteem I found a homeophatic remedy which is sold at independant grocery store or health food store whichever which is called rescue remedy spray and it is a spray which you put two times on your tongue - it helps with an emotional sense of well-being - there is one that says rescue sleep remedy which helps you sleep in one minute and wake up rested - so when we have a sense of well-being in this stressed out world aqll else follows - worth a try and it is natural

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 55
   Posted 10/22/2010 7:20 AM (GMT -6)   
I found books about cognitive behavioral therapy really helpful. the Feeling Good Book by David Burns and Mind over Mood. I have to re-read them and keep working at it but I have found it really helpful just reading on my own and the library should have lots of resources.
pancolitis diagnosed 2002
tappering off prednisone from recent flare
asacol 400mg X 3 daily
multivitamins & fish oil
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