Feeling sad and stressed due to COVID-lockdown? Perhaps DHEA can help to counteract depression.

Feeling sad and stressed due to COVID-lockdown?

Depression in winter time is quite normal, because we aren't exposed to the vitamin D-generating sunrays, which also enhances immunity levels. Fortunately, we can take vitamin D supplements to combat seasonal depression as well as enhance immunity levels.

Another way to chase sadness away is by celebrating, no matter whether that's Sinterklaas, Winter Solstice, Hanukkah, Christmas or New Year. We will decorate our houses, exchange gifts and overeat , get a bit tipsy and enjoy ourselves.
This year is different: restaurants, shops and even gyms need to close down and we are not allowed to gather together in groups. Lack of entertainment, retail therapy and exercise will make it much more difficult to overcome feelings of depression.
It gets worse when you are among those who work in the tourism or entertainment industry and have lost your job as well as most of your income.

For now it is probably best to just accept the current state of affairs and try to console yourself with non-edible goods, such as nice music with a good book, entertaining movie, and aromatherapy (perfume/room fragrances).
And, weather permitting, put on your walking shoes and go for a long walk in the forests or local park.

But perhaps you have been feeling too stressed to enjoy whatever you still can do to relax? Or you were already feeling sad before COVID-19 came along? In that case, DHEA might help.

Feeling depressed? Maybe DHEA can help.

There are several studies that show that hormonal supplementation of DHEA has the ability to relieve or treat moderate level depression in both men and women.

DHEA and your adrenals may be a key factor in what is causing your depression.
Researchers and chronic depression specialist physicians recommends that patients should not consider DHEA supplements as a first option as there may be other effective and efficient medications available to treat depression.
One should always consider causal factors and try to get the whole picture of what is causing the depression in the first place.

Some studies indicate that DHEA hormone supplements may reduce depression levels and related symptoms by as much as 50%, which is quite remarkable.

DHEA benefits for depression treatment

DHEA is classified as a steroid hormone which is naturally produced in the human body. DHEA also has its own biological function to work as a precursor for other hormones like testosterone and estrogen.

In many people the prime factor involved with the rising level of chronic depression is because the overall body stress level also increases. Aligned with this, you can mostly see fluctuations of low and high levels of the body's own DHEA hormone production.

The key to understanding DHEA and depression is that DHEA is produced in the adrenal glands. The adrenals also produce the body’s main stress hormones like cortisol and adrenalin. As the adrenals wear out from too much stress, it’s ability to produce DHEA will also decline.

With age, the level of DHEA hormone tend to decrease, and lower DHEA levels will also make us more vulnerable to stress. Among other things, this may lead to chronic fatigue syndrome and emotional behavioral changes which are often part of what we experience together with depression.
It may even be that the fatigue caused by low DHEA levels is confused with depression all together.

Most of the symptoms of adrenal fatigue that relates to mood and low energy are also symptoms of depression.
A doctor with limited knowledge of adrenal fatigue may very well label these symptoms as depression without understanding that the cause and key to proper treatment lies in stimulating the hormonal balance.
Antidepressants will surely not make your DHEA levels go up. If you are on antidepressants you may want to get a second opinion by a practitioner with experience on hormones and particularly adrenals and adrenal fatigue.

Conclusion

It's no use to get angry about the current lockdown when you can't do anything about it.
Try to see the positive side of having more time off than you ever wanted to have, without an ability to see friends and relatives.
If however, you are 50+ years old and you are noticing how you can no longer cope with stress as well as in the past, you may feel inclined to try DHEA.

Even when you are older, it is best to seek a doctors advice before trying supplementing with DHEA.
High dosages of DHEA may create an imbalance in the natural hormone system, and there may be side effects.
A natural approach with adaptogen herbs such as rhodiola and ashwagandha may be safer to start with before trying DHEA on your own.

 

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