Millions of Americans swallow pills daily hoping they will work some kind of magic and make their lives easier, less stressful. Maybe this pill, that white powder, or these capsules will make them feel better once they dissolve in their stomach, enter the blood stream, and travel to the brain. They have put their faith in medication, hoping it will relieve their present state of dis-ease.
Antidepressant pharmaceuticals are a multi-billon dollar industry. Every media is bombarded by ads for these drugs. As you watch these commercials, note the careful language they use in suggesting that depression “may” be caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. They go on to tell you how the medication “can correct” this biochemical imbalance. What many Americans don’t know is that there has never been definitive research that proves depression is caused by a chemical imbalance. The problem with the theory that depression is a consequence of a “chemical imbalance in the brain” is that depression can be both triggered and resolved by life events. The truth is the relationship between brain chemistry and life experience is a two-directional phenomenon: Life experience affects brain chemistry at least as much as brain chemistry affects life experience.
A true diagnosis of major depression involves a combination of most of the following: inability to feel pleasure of any kind, loss of interest in most everything, self-hatred or guilt, inability to concentrate or do the simplest things, sleeping all the time or not being able to sleep at all, dramatic weight gain or loss, and suicidal thoughts or actions. Truly depressed people seldom smile or laugh; they may not talk; they are not fun to be with; they do not wish to be visited. They may not eat, and sometimes have to be fed with feeding tubes to keep then alive. They exude a palpable sense of pain. Depression is a thing unto itself, an undeniably physical and medical affliction.
While science has not determined the exact cause of depression, research has pointed towards a likely involvement of the brain stem and upper cervical spine in many mood disorders. In fact, the brain stem (whose lower portion is located in the uppermost part of the spine) is involved in the regulation and control of brain chemistry as well many other vital functions.
Even a mild concussion to the head, neck or upper back can increase the risk of depression. Studies show that depression is a common diagnosis in patients with whiplash, an injury that can directly affect the upper neck and lower brain stem. Following the trauma, mood disorders can be triggered immediately, or they can take months or even years to develop. Exciting new studies show "significant improvement" in depression test scores after specific upper cervical corrections. This noninvasive and safe alternative should be the beginning point for all who believe that they are suffering from depression.
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