Women taking pill more likely to be treated for depression, study finds

Danish research finds that women on combined contraceptive pill are 23% more likely to be prescribed anti-depressants

Women taking pill more likely to be treated for depression, study finds

Women who take the contraceptive pill are more likely to be treated for depression, according to a large new study.

Millions of women worldwide use hormonal contraceptives, and there have long been reports that they can affect mood. A research project was launched in Denmark to look at the scale of the problem, involving the medical records of more than a million women and adolescent girls.

It found that those on the combined pill are 23% more likely to be prescribed an antidepressant by their doctor, most commonly in the first six months after starting on the pill. Women on the progestin-only pills, a synthetic form of the hormone progesterone, were 34% more likely to take antidepressants or get a first diagnosis of depression than those not on hormonal contraception.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Psychiatry, found that not only women taking pills but also those with implants, patches and intra-uterine devices were affected.

Adolescent girls appeared to be at highest risk. Those taking combined pills were 80% more likely and those on progestin-only pills more than twice as likely to be prescribed an antidepressant than their peers who were not on the pill.

The researchers, jvind Lidegaard of the University of Copenhagen and colleagues, point out that women are twice as likely to suffer from depression in their lifetime as men, though rates are equal before puberty. The fluctuating levels of the two female sex hormones, oestrogen and progesterone, have been implicated. Studies have suggested raised progesterone levels in particular may lower mood.

The impact of low-dose hormonal contraception on mood and possibly depression has not been fully studied, the authors say. They used registry data in Denmark on more than a million women and adolescent girls aged between 15 and 34. They were followed up from 2000 until 2013 with an average follow-up of 6.4 years.

The authors call for more studies to investigate this possible side-effect of the pill.

Other scientists said the research should not put women off using hormonal contraception. Dr Channa Jayasena, a clinical senior lecturer in reproductive endocrinology at Imperial College London, said: This study raises important questions about the pill. In over a million Danish women, depression was associated with contraceptive pill use. The study does not prove [and does not claim] that the pill plays any role in the development of depression. However, we know hormones play a hugely important role in regulating human behaviour.

Given the enormous size of this study, further work is needed to see if these results can be repeated in other populations, and to determine possible biological mechanisms which might underlie any possible link between the pill and depression. Until then, women should not be deterred from taking the pill.

Dr Ali Kubba, a fellow of the faculty of sexual and reproductive healthcare of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, also said further research was needed.

There is existing clinical evidence that hormonal contraception can impact some womens moods, however, from this study there is no way of linking causation, therefore further research is needed to examine depression as a potential adverse effect of hormonal contraceptive use, he said.

Women should not be alarmed by this study as all women react differently to different methods of contraception. There are a variety of contraception methods on offer including the pill, implants, injections, intrauterine devices, and vaginal rings and we therefore advise women to discuss their options with a doctor, where they will discuss the possible side-effects and decisions around the most suitable method can be made jointly.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/sep/28/women-taking-contraceptive-pill-more-likely-to-be-treated-for-depression-study-finds

What Are The Best Herbal Remedies For Anxiety

What Are The Best Herbal Remedies For Anxiety| Natural Home Remedies To Get Rid Of ANXIETY DISORDERS

What Are The Best Herbal Remedies For Anxiety| Natural Home Remedies To Get Rid Of ANXIETY DISORDERS
Among the best or most popular herbal remedies for anxiety are Chamomile, St. John's Wort and Valerian. These herbal remedies are not new; Chamomile, for example, has been around for thousands of years. Similar to the other above-mentioned herbs, one of Chamomile's most popular uses is promoting calmness and curbing mild anxiety. About Natural Anxiety Remedies On Pinterest | Natural Remedies For Anxiety, Remedies For Anxiety And Remedies
As a general rule, most herbal remedies are not governed by regulatory food and drug agencies. This means the effectiveness of the herbs is sometimes anecdotal and not scientifically proven. Similar to prescription drugs, herbal remedies can have side effects. Some of these side effects can be quite serious or even fatal. When herbal remedies are used with caution and in moderation, however, some people swear by their effectiveness in reducing anxiety.
Chamomile is perhaps one of the most well-known herbal remedies for anxiety. The flowers of the chamomile plant are often used in making teas, liquid extracts or pills. Chamomile is known as a remedy for insomnia and anxiety, and it is used as a treatment for an upset stomach and other gastrointestinal problems.
Rare allergic reactions to Chamomile include throat swelling, shortness of breath, skin rashes and a life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Allergic reactions to herbal remedies are most likely to occur in people with allergies to the daisy family. In addition to daisies, this plant family includes chrysanthemums, marigolds and ragweed.
St. John's wort also is among the well-known herbal remedies for anxiety. It has been used for centuries. This flowering top of this herb is commonly used in tea and capsule form. Scientific studies have shown mixed results for the effectiveness of St. John's wort.
A study by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine in the United States found that St. John's wort was not effective in treating moderate depression. Some evidence was found that it could be effective in treating mild to moderate depression. Some side effects to watch for include sensitivity to sunlight, fatigue, headache, dry mouth and even increased anxiety.
The root of the Valerian plant is another well-known herb for reducing anxiety. Valerian is often taken in the form of a tea or in capsules. Valerian is known for its sedative effect and is commonly used to treat insomnia, with some indications that it is effective in treating anxiety.
Significant and long-term side effects of Valerian are generally not known. Similar to St. John's wort, Valerian might actually increase anxiety and excitability in some people. Other possible side effects include irregular heartbeats and headaches.
When using any herbal remedies for anxiety, one should carefully follow all dosage recommendations under the guidance of either a trusted herbalist or a physician. A physician should be consulted if any other herbs or medications are being taken, as interactions can occur. As with prescription drugs, some people will feel an improvement in their condition while using herbs, and others will not. Prolonged anxiety can indicate a serious condition and might require psychological treatment or other forms of treatments.
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What Are The Best Herbal Remedies For Anxiety| Natural Home Remedies To Get Rid Of ANXIETY DISORDERS