May is Mental Health Month

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We’ve been hearing a lot about Mental Health lately in the news and in social media. A quick google search for “mental health” returns over 330 million results.  What is mental health?  According to “Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.” Many factors contribute to mental health problems including:

  • Biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry
  • Life experiences, such as trauma or abuse
  • Family history of mental health problems

Mental health problems are common, and people with mental health problems can get better and many recover completely.  In 2014 about:

  • 1 in 5 American adults experienced a mental health issue (20%)
  • 1 in 10 young people experienced a period of major depression (10%)
  • 1 in 25 Americans lived with a serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or major depression (4%)

There are many different types of mental health problems that affect your thinking, mood or behavior.  These disorders include (1):

  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Behavioral Disorders
  • Eating Disorders
  • Substance Use Disorders
  • Mood Disorders
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Personality Disorders
  • Psychotic Disorders
  • Suicidal Behavior
  • Trauma and Stress Related Disorders

Anxiety disorders cause people to respond to certain objects or situations with fear and dread.  They have physical reactions to these objects or situations such as rapid heartbeat and sweating.  Anxiety disorder is diagnosed if a person has an inappropriate response to a situation, cannot control the response and has altered their way of life due to the anxiety.  Your doctor will examine you and review your symptoms and medical history.  They may run tests to rule out medical illnesses that may be causing your symptoms. If your doctor doesn’t find a medical reason for your symptoms they may refer you to a mental health specialist who will use different tools and testing to determine if you have an anxiety disorder. The term anxiety disorder covers several different conditions (2):

  • Panic Disorder
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Specific Phobias
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Phobias are one of the most common mental illnesses in the United States. The National Institute of Mental Health suggests that eight percent of U.S. adults have some type of phobia. Women are more likely to experience phobias than men. Typical symptoms of phobias can include nausea, trembling, rapid heartbeat, feelings of unreality, and being preoccupied with the fear object. The American Psychiatric Association identifies three different categories of phobias: social phobias, agoraphobia, and specific phobias. When people talk about having a phobia of a specific object such as snakes, spiders or needles, they are referring to a specific phobia. (3)  Common phobias include:

  • Acrophobia – Fear of heights
  • Ophidiophobia – Fear of snakes
  • Glossophobia – Fear of public speaking
  • Arachnophobia – Fear of spiders
  • Claustrophobia – Fear of enclosed or small spaces
  • Agoraphobia – Fear of open or crowded spaces
  • Social Phobia – Fear of being embarrassed in front of other people
  • Aerophobia or Aviophobia – Fear of flying
  • Coulrophobia – Fear of clowns
  • Mysophobia – Fear of dirt and germs

For most people, specific phobias can be successfully treated with therapy, medication or a combination of both.  Treatment may include one or a combination of cognitive behavioral therapy, medication and relaxation techniques. “For situational phobias that produce intense, temporary anxiety (for example, a fear of flying), short-acting sedative-hypnotics (benzodiazepines) such as Ativan, or Xanax may be prescribed on an occasional, as-needed basis to help reduce anticipatory anxiety. Unless a phobia is accompanied by other conditions such as depression or panic disorder, long-term or daily medicines are generally not used. Occasionally, serotonergic antidepressants such as Paxil, Prozac or Lexapromay have potential value for some patients. More recently, common blood pressure drugs called beta-blockers have been used to treat anxiety related to specific phobias.” (4)

While the medications listed above can be effective for people with situational phobias natural remedies are available that can help reduce anticipatory anxiety.  Native Remedies offers many different products to help relieve the symptoms of stress and anxiety, including three homeopathic remedies that are specially formulated for specific situational phobias:  ClaustroSolve™ and AgoraFear Relief™.

ClaustroSolve – Temporarily reduces feelings of panic & anxiety, breathlessness, sweating, faintness and the need to escape enclosed spaces. Fear-induced stress and panic are common reactions to enclosed spaces and crowds. Sweating, faintness, breathlessness and feelings of the need to escape are all symptoms of claustrophobia. Anxiety related to enclosed spaces, flying and the fear of being in crowded places can interfere with living a normal and productive life. ClaustroSolve is formulated by a Clinical Psychologist to support calm and reduce the stress and panic associated with a fear of enclosed spaces and crowded places. With a combination of specially selected homeopathic remedies, ClaustroSolve can be used in the moment to reduce common anxiety and panic symptoms when they arise. No fear of addiction or side effects. ClaustroSolve is available in small pleasant-tasting tablets that can be chewed or dissolved directly in the mouth – take two tablets every 20 minutes for up to 10 doses or until symptoms subside.

AgoraFear Relief – Helps reduce fear and anxiety in new environments. AgoraFear Relief may be taken at the first signs of nervous symptoms (sweating, trembling or shortness of breath) for effective, temporary help. The ingredients are selected to help with the nervousness and worry caused by fear of crowds, fear of leaving the house, or the fear of going outside – all without side effects. With a combination of specially selected homeopathic remedies, AgoraFear Relief can be used at the moment to reduce common anxiety and panic symptoms when they arise. No fear of addiction or side effects. AgoraFear Relief is available in small pleasant-tasting tablets that can be chewed or dissolved directly in the mouth – take two tablets every 20 minutes for up to 10 doses or until symptoms subside.

Mental health problems are common, but help is available.  People with mental health problems can get better and many recover completely. Only 44% of adults and less than 20% of children and adolescents receive needed treatment.  Friends and family can be important influences to help someone get the treatment and services they need (5):

  • Reach out and let them know you are available to help
  • Help them access mental health services
  • Learn and share the facts about mental health
  • Treat people with a mental health problem with respect, just as you would anyone else
  • Refuse to define them by their diagnoses or labels

Always seek immediate assistance if you or someone you know is in danger of harming themselves or others. You can call a crisis line or the National Suicide Prevention Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). (





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