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Holistic Treatment for Anxiety Disorders

This entry was posted in Mental Health on by .
Medically Reviewed

Last Updated on July 21, 2021 by Carol Gillette

Alternative to Meds Editorial Team
Medically Reviewed by Dr John Motl MD

Holistic treatment for anxiety disorders must be carefully managed as there are many root causes for anxiety. Medical, metabolic, and neurotoxicity issues are common, especially with ongoing anxiety disorders. For many, life traumas still haunt their everyday existence and are left unresolved. Here, at our licensed mental health facility, we can help find emotional resolve in a delicate and understanding way, guided by our experts.

Acute Stress Disorder

acute stress disorderTammy was a 52-year-old schoolteacher in the Seattle area. Her 24 year old daughter Jill was getting married in 6 weeks to a successful business owner and they were observably happy and in love. Though on the surface everything looked fine, inside Tammy felt increasingly anxious about the upcoming wedding preparations. As the wedding day approached, Tammy became more and more anxious about the myriad of details, worrying about issues that she felt she had little to no control over. A friend told her to go see her doctor and get some help. She did just that, and due to her acute stress levels, connected to a real world event, the doctor observed Tammy to be suffering from “acute stress disorder,” and prescribed the usual antidote which was a benzodiazepine to help calm her nerves.

Acute stress disorder can present with serious symptoms and drawbacks.

The acute stress disorder symptoms did however not abate, and when Tammy was into the second week of her prescription, she had a complete meltdown and ended up in a psychiatric hospital. Doctors told her she’d had a toxic reaction to the drugs, and one specialist felt her prior symptoms were related to early onset menopause. That was over 2 years ago, and not only did Tammy not get to see her daughter’s wedding, she no longer can teach, and is now taking 6 prescription drugs to medicate the various symptoms which drove her life to ruins.

However, numbing medications are not necessary to relieve acute stress disorder symptoms.

When life is lived, one can expect stress levels to rise. Especially when encountering acutely stressful events, such as marriages, funerals, job losses, where the effects of these events may be further underscored by health conditions. This would be like adding fuel to the fire.

If life has become acutely stressful, perhaps a full battery of tests and non invasive, non harmful acute stress disorder treatment options would be a prudent option to consider as a first step. We also offer tapering programs for Ambien withdrawal and many other prescription drugs. Call us today to find out more about alternative treatments for acute stress disorder.


agoraphobiaAre you tired of not being able to live life as you once did, and being afraid of life? Have psychotherapeutic measures, treatments, medications and guidelines offered been only modestly effective?

Usually the agoraphobic person has lost the ability to inhibit the sensory stimulus from their environment. These symptoms are similar to a person who has a hangover as they have burned up all the inhibitory neurotransmitters the night before, and the next morning lights hurt, sounds hurt, etc. For the agoraphobic, it is often that this inability for the brain to modulate stimulus is a chronic situation. By repairing the neurochemistry using targeted neurochemical precursor therapy, and the removal of impairing neurotoxins, it is possible to achieve a lasting result in abating agoraphobia symptoms.

Agoraphobia may be challenging, but can be overcome without the use of mind-numbing drugs.

The debilitating symptoms of agoraphobia may be corrected with proper treatment and this can open up other options for treatment without focusing primarily on medication as treatment. The medications typically used are benzodiazepines like Valium, Xanax or Ativan. Statistically, Agoraphobia is estimated to affect from 5 million to 20 million Americans. What does agoraphobia mean? Agora comes from the Latin word for marketplace or place of public gatherings + phobia comes from the Greek phobos, meaning irrational fear. So we could say agoraphobia is a condition of being fearful for no apparent or rational reason, of places like shopping centers, outdoor spaces, gathering places, workplaces, open fields and so on. It is interesting to note that the term first emerged in an 1873 psychiatric journal in an article penned by a Dr. Westphal. The suffix “phobia” became widely used in the 1800’s to describe all sorts of specific types of elements that persons felt afraid of.

Through investigating the possible underlying causes of symptoms, relief can be achieved and progress can be made with agoraphobia treatment.

The reactions and symptoms of agoraphobia are described as extremely overwhelming to those who suffer from them. Agoraphobics tend to stay indoors, avoiding any public gathering places or similar triggers. Treatment for agoraphobia has tended to reside in drugs, like benzodiazepines, to numb these unwanted feelings of dread and overpowering fear and to calm the heart rate and slow down respiration. Where a specific incident preceded the condition such as having been kidnapped, or assaulted, counseling can relieve some of the stress, thereby freeing the person from these trigger points. Additionally, exciting progress has been made in researching the factors that may contribute to the condition, such as dietary modifications to reduce overproduction of adrenaline, exercises like slow stretching to remove lactic acid in the muscle tissues, nutritional supplements like the amino acid taurine, which can greatly relieve the symptoms commonly associated with agoraphobia, and many others.

Agoraphobia may be challenging, but can be overcome without the use of mind-numbing drugs.

Here at Alternative to Meds Center, one of our goals is to help individuals who have been searching for a non-medication based protocol to find relief from their agora or other phobia. As stated earlier, if one suffers from agoraphobia, one is not alone. Millions are suffering and perhaps unnecessarily. More cutting edge technology relating to this debilitating condition is available more than ever before.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive compulsive disorder, OCD can manifest in extreme ways for some individuals, and is often hard to control with medication alone.

obsessive compulsive disorderWho doesn’t have an obsessive compulsion or two:
“I think that I turned off the stove, let me go back and just double check one last time.”
“I know I said I wouldn’t buy another (chocolate bar, dress, car, etc.) but I can’t help myself – I absolutely have to have one.”

The problem of making a diagnosis of obsessive compulsive disorder ( OCD ) might be said to be one of degree, more than anything else. Anyone can obsess a little bit over routine or not unusual things, as mentioned above. When the obsessive behavior begins to impede quality of life, would be one especially important marker symptom that might preclude obsessive compulsive disorder treatment options.

Obsessive compulsive disorder symptoms are found most often in the high IQ, as it requires quite complex thinking patterns to maintain the activity. Such things as counting breaths, or steps, or fixating on certain number patterns, or activities may seem absurd to others, and for this very reason are sometimes kept secret. That alone can cause distress and invite self-criticism and further rumination on these compulsive activities and thought patterns. Often, the repeated compulsive actions are to provide relief from a symptom of worsening anxiety that builds up and this is the general pattern. A certain level of anxiety is driving the compulsive behaviors. It’s a matter of what makes someone feel comfortable, safe and secure, what turns off the symptoms, and the logic used to assuage such actions and habits.

We can help replace compulsions and obsessions with healthy and positive behaviors.

Often, a very high level of anxiety is present in a person who is involved in extremes of habitual actions, without which habitual actions, their anxiety level would be completely debilitating. Drugs are commonly prescribed to bring the level of anxiety or self criticism to a more tolerable level. But these drugs usually come with their own additional negative side effects. It is interesting to note that since Serotonin is considered to be the anti-rumination neurochemical, it is thought that its deficit is possibly linked to obsessive compulsive disorder. Adequate Serotonin would tend to cancel or neutralize the impulse of acting on a feeling like wanting to die.

Though not found effective, pharmaceutical companies market and sell antidepressants with jargon to target this neurochemical (as it in truth assists in keeping a person from acting on impulse). However, adequate amounts of serotonin are not achieved in taking antidepressants. Existing serotonin is recycled, but not increased by these antidepressants. Happily though, it is possible to boost Serotonin naturally using protocols and treatments that seek to repair neurochemical production and distribution in the body, and hence this is a treatment that can provide relief from this grinding affliction.

We investigate all possible avenues of underlying causes and potential corrections to sustain relief from symptoms.

Having a more balanced neurochemistry will calm these impulses and compulsive thoughts, worries, behaviors and other symptoms. At Alternative to Meds Center, we have helped many people suffering from OCD symptoms, by holistic means alone. Where drugs have been over prescribed, we can assist this as well to regain the energy that springs from the well of good health. The Alternative to meds Center welcomes you to call for more information about how we can help treat OCD symptoms without medication.

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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Post-traumatic stress disorder, PTSD can be an overwhelming problem, and can also be corrected when properly addressed.

post traumatic stress disorderIt is a very sad fact indeed that post-traumatic stress disorder ( PTSD ) is fast becoming one of the most frequently diagnosed conditions in the world. Perhaps in part because we live in an environment of ongoing war and militarism, and in a time of societal trouble, stress and strife in many areas of life on planet earth. It could also be because the DSM IV ( Psychiatry’s diagnostic manual ) has increased by 50% the various trigger labels for the condition. Life can be stressful, and unfortunately, people are subjected to various traumas that are hard to recover from it seems, in a short period of time.

Let’s look at an example of someone who has suffered from trauma, and then later experiences post traumatic stress disorder symptoms. A sadly common scenario is a soldier ( who we can call Sally ) who witnesses or experiences a forceful trauma. In Sally’s case, a bomb goes off nearby and she is left momentarily blinded and deafened, and has received a shrapnel wound to her face. Many years later, her physical wounds are healed. She returns home to a regular job, and family, and her diet consists of regular grocery store type foods, fast foods to some degree, and she is glad to be safe and home. This ex-soldier is walking down the street one day and noticed a brown paper bag on the sidewalk. She suddenly stops, feels a panicked feeling as her body is flooded with adrenaline, and realizes it’s probably not a bomb, but walks around the bag anyways, just in case. She is almost hyperventilating as she continues down the street, and will have a nightmare about this later that evening. She is suffering from PTSD symptoms.

We address this condition with customized methods including corrective techniques targeted at the cause of symptoms.

Not only military personnel suffer from PTSD. Trauma can have a lingering effect whatever the cause was. There is a long list of potential trigger incidents for post-traumatic stress disorder, that don’t have to happen in a foreign country, or in active duty. A motor vehicle accident, being traumatized by a dog when young, or even as an adult, and a myriad of other traumatic experiences can have this after shock effect. If one is suffering from this debilitating condition, and medication such as benzodiazepines is not the option desired for post-traumatic stress disorder treatment, one can pick up the phone and call us. We can discuss alternative means of addressing the problem which do no further harm, are comfortable and are effective in relieving post-traumatic disorder and other debilitating conditions. We offer tapering programs for Lorazepam withdrawal and many other drugs. We invite you to call us to discuss the treatment options that are available to you.

Social Anxiety

Social anxiety can be extreme to the point of feeling incapacitated; however, you don’t have to continue suffering from this feeling.

social anxietyThere can be a turning point when one becomes fed up with social anxiety, this troublesome condition which can keep one from doing the things one really loves, or can even turn one into a bit of a recluse. It is very true that social anxiety symptoms are not so uncommon. In fact, many people suffer from some degree of social anxiety, and anyone can feel this at one time or another. But some people are factually disabled in their life because of it’s very daunting symptoms.

Extreme fear of embarrassing oneself in social situations, dreading an upcoming social event for days or weeks beforehand, fearfulness of being in any public or social situation with the attendant heart pounding, voice quaking, blood rushing to the head, and feeling like one might just faint — these are terrifically difficult symptoms that would put a damper on any party or social discourse. This is where specifically addressing the condition can turn one’s life around in a big and positive way. More and more studies are ongoing in an attempt to trace any suspected factors that may be magnifying the symptoms or causing them to linger. Some of these potential treatment factors might be diet and nutrition, genetic disposition, toxicity burden, and others. A number of studies have been done to trace any neurological factors that could be detected and possibly treated with targeted nutritional therapy and other non-invasive methods. Instead of these and the aforementioned light therapies, the mainstream social anxiety treatments have traditionally been the prescribing of tranquilizers to assist a person’s anxiety level. this is a temporary relief because the problem is that these medications may mask but do not ever cure the condition. And they may cause new symptoms to add to a person’s discomfort and troubles.

Instead of encouraging use of medications that temporary relieve symptoms, we employ corrective treatments that aim to address the condition head-on and create long-term relief.

At Alternative to Meds Center, the treatments for social anxiety are healthy and even pleasant. Many people have experienced great relief from their social anxiety disorder symptoms through these methods. Call us for more information. One of our friendly and helpful staff would be more than happy to discuss options for treatment that are available for social anxiety and for many other distressing conditions.

Originally Published Dec 18, 2020 by Diane Ridaeus

This content has been reviewed and approved by a licensed physician.

Dr. John Motl, M.D.

Dr. Motl is currently certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Psychiatry, and Board eligible in Neurology and licensed in the state of Arizona.  He holds a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in biology and minors in chemistry and philosophy. He graduated from Creighton University School of Medicine with a Doctor of Medicine.  Dr. Motl has studied Medical Acupuncture at the Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine and at U.C.L.A.

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