A growing amount of depression patients are interested in using herbal depression medicine as opposed to prescription drugs to deal with their condition. While herbal treatment for depression is in many cases not really proven to work the herbal depression medicine St Johns Wort is the only person that has been shown to have a positive effect on certain forms of depression. So a deeper review of the herbal treatment for depression is warranted.
St Johns Wort (Hypericum Perforatum), also referred to as goats weed, is a perennial herb with small yellow flowers that originally stems from Europe but was also introduced to the American continent. The plant derives its name from the old tradition of harvesting its flowers on St. Johns’s day (June 24th). The herb is toxic to grazing animals and invasively replaces other plants wherever it grows. Herbalcase Thus, if not actively grown as herbal depression medicine, it is often controlled by the utilization of herbicides or by biological means. The use of St Johns Wort as a medicinal plant is documented since antiquity, with the very first recorded mentioning being an herbal treatment for depression in the 17th century. Today St Johns Wort extracts, mostly in the form of pills and tablets, and in certain instances, teas are used as herbal depression medicine and as a treatment for anxiety. Especially in Europe, and particularly, in the German-speaking countries there is a lengthy tradition of prescribing this herbal depression medicine as opposed to prescription drugs for mild cases of depression, within the US there is still some skepticism from medical professionals.
A sizable amount of clinical studies have repeatedly shown that St Johns Wort is as effective as standard prescription medicine and far more advanced than placebo in dealing with mild to moderate depression. In addition, this herbal treatment for depression showed an improved side effect profile than conventional antidepressants. However, other clinical studies on the utilization of St Johns Wort as a treatment for moderate to severe depression showed no significant effect of the drug. In general, this indicates that herbal depression medicine is a treatment of choice for minor depression, although not for more severe cases where more traditional approaches are indicated. As may be the case with prescription antidepressants the precise mode of action where St Johns Wort works is unknown. However, it is thought that the herb and particularly its active compounds hyperforin and hypericin, and others behave as serotonin reuptake inhibitors. As is the case with herbal extracts the grade of St Johns Wort extracts can differ significantly based on where in fact the plant was grown and how the extract was derived at and purified. It has obviously implications for clinical studies and for the person patient taking this herbal depression medicine. Thus, if someone is successfully using one St Johns Wort-based brand of the merchandise he is recommended not to modify to other brands. St Johns Wort is normally well tolerated, though side effects such as tiredness, sedation, confusion, photosensitivity, and stomach pain have been reported. This herbal depression medicine also interacts with contraceptives along with with some other drugs, usually decreasing the effect of those drugs.Read More