Depression is a devastating condition, and it is prevalent among all ages. It can oppress by itself or as a "co-morbid" (occurring in conjunction with) condition with other syndromes, such as anxiety, sleep disorders, trauma, brain injury, and even developmental disorders like attention deficit or autism.
Many people recognize depression as sadness, low energy, or a loss of motivation, enjoyment or enthusiasm. Most people do not recognize that many acting out behaviors, especially in children or adolescents, are signs of depression. Children act out their feelings because they have not adequately developed language that expresses their emotional sensitivities. Most youngsters are not yet mature enough to recognize or articulate their distress with an emotional vocabulary.
Adding to the chronic problem of depression is the readiness of the medical mainstream to treat it with powerful suppressing drugs. Most of these drugs have significant side effects, and most of them stop working adequately after patients have taken them for awhile—assuming they worked effectively enough at first.
You often hear the mantras of “chemical imbalance” or “receptor sensitivity” to explain and justify the continuous use of powerful drugs (controlled by physicians and the pharmaceutical industry) to rectify the supposed biochemical deficiency.
However, there are alternative methods to eliminate depression indefinitely. These methods are natural, free of harmful side effects, and enduring. They work by enlisting the natural abilities of the brain to regulate the so-called chemical imbalances.
EEG neurofeedback is a highly effective method of training the brain and nervous system to relieve depression. Using this method, patients train their brainwaves using computers. This method takes advantage of the brain’s natural neuroplasticity by providing feedback that subclinically enhances the brain’s flexibility in manipulating the timing mechanisms underlying states of arousal and feeling.
Neurofeedback is a brain exercise that has pervasive and lasting effects. It enables the brain to find, develop, and restore its own “comfort” levels for maintaining good mood, calmness, and equanimity. Neurofeedback is effectively used for many conditions. Since it directly influences nervous system control, it almost always dissipates depression. After a training regimen, the brain continues to exercise the control it has learned. Depression stays away because the brain learns to maintain self-regulation.
Here is an example, a word picture, hat will help you understand: Imagine that you have a getaway place, perhaps a weekend cottage to which you escape the rough and tumble and stress of work and the demands on your life. It is a simple, peaceful, place by the sea, and you feel relaxed and refreshed whenever you go there. Because of its healthful effects, you visit as often as possible. After spending more and more time at your getaway place, you decide to live there at least part-time. You move some of your furniture and belongings. Soon this place feels natural and more “like home” than your accustomed home with all the bustle and stress. Your orientation changes so that now your home base is the place by the sea. You venture out from there, and the world looks different and better. At some point, you notify the post office that this is your new address.
This example is a metaphor for how EEG neurofeedback trains your brain to find a new “home base,” a new address, if you will, where the feeling is peaceful and calm, and relaxation and joy are the new “normal.” This healthy state is achievable for the vast majority of patients within a few months.
I prefer to use a combination of treatment methods to achieve both rapid and lasting effects in the elimination of depression. These treatments are natural, effective, and enduring because they address the root causes of depression.
In addition to EEG neurofeedback, I use Voice Technology Thought Field Therapy to quickly eliminate depressed states.
Thought Field Therapy (TFT) is a powerful treatment for dealing with psychological disturbances. TFT provides a code that, when applied to a psychological problem the individual is experiencing, eliminates perturbations in the thought field that are the fundamental cause of all negative emotions. (A perturbation is a disturbance in the encoding of information that connects a thought with a feeling. TFT acts upon these perturbations to collapse them and render them inactive.) Voice Technology is a very advanced form of Thought Field Therapy that uses the human voice to determine the codes that keep anxiety and other negative emotions in place.
I test the person’s voice and, using the revealed information, prescribe tapping sequences that the person self-administers on his own body. In a matter of minutes, the depression and other negative feelings disappear! This procedure works 97% of the time and can be done over the phone.
In cases involving trauma-based depression, one or two treatments are often sufficient to eliminate the depression and set the stage for new brain states. Some people need more treatment, and a significant percentage of these people are sensitive to toxins—foods, supplements, toiletries, materials—substances they encounter regularly without knowing these contribute to and trigger anxiety. By voice-testing for toxins, patients are empowered to identify and avoid substances that can trigger anxiety.
There are also self-help versions of Thought Field Therapy that enable people to effectively treat their own anxiety (See Steinberg, Living Intact: Challenge and Choice in Tough Times, 2011, for a fuller description and step-by-step self-help guide).
The current political sway and much of the medical establishment (influenced by the powerful pharmaceutical industry) would have us believe that depression is caused by biochemical imbalances—and thus the “cure” depends upon finding the right chemical agents (which keep changing as their flaws become apparent) to balance the deficiency. However, this simplistic model overlooks this basic fact: that life is a series of imbalances. Hunger, fatigue, sexual desire, cell repair, growth and aging—these are all cyclical imbalances that require adjustments and on-going corrections. This is the fabric of living. The body and mind detect, assess, respond to, and evaluate challenges regularly. These challenges involve routine biochemical functions (even maintaining body temperature), as well as perceptions of, accommodations to, and integrations with the environment. The distinct and persisting difficulties many people have in regulating these imbalances (including mood) comprise vulnerabilities, not necessarily diseases. (For more detail, see Steinberg & Othmer, ADD: The 20-Hour Solution, 2004, especially Chapter 8: The Cult of the Neurotransmitter).
All people have genetic vulnerabilities; depression is one that afflicts many people. If this runs in your genes or family, then you may be susceptible to triggers or traumas that activate such vulnerabilities. The intelligent, safe, and long-lasting solution is to identify those influences that activate the problem, guard against them through lifestyle adjustments (diet, sleep, stress, etc.) and train your brain so impingements by life don’t throw you out of balance. Training our brain and using TFT techniques to eliminate depression are the best ways I’ve found over three decades of research and practice.
Isn’t it interesting that when we become sad, angry, or upset, the problem appears to be “out there” in the circumstance that “caused” it? The truth is that circumstances never cause depression. They simply act as agents or triggers to activate our internal vulnerabilities. Don’t assume your depression is justified by things that happen, or that you can effectively get over it by learning to think about it differently (as in cognitive behavior therapy).
The real and effective solution is to take charge of your body’s biochemical and brain functions naturally. Yes, your attitude and feelings will change—and you won’t have to douse your body with drugs or trick your mind into believing better ideas. It will all come naturally when you train your brain and use TFT.