Anxiety Stress Insomnia
The duration of sleep needed for humans varies greatly relation to the condition of the subject, age, habits life: some individuals, in fact, in absolutely normal conditions, they need less sleep than others. With advancing age, moreover, the total amount of sleep tends to decrease, and sleep itself becomes more fragmented. However, if this does not leading to modifications of well-being, it should not particular concern. There is talk of insomnia whenever one individual complaint little restorative power of your sleep, which results in daytime sleepiness with relative decrease of the daily performance and important influence on interpersonal relationships and status individual well-being. Often anxious and depressed people suffer from insomnia: Anxiety causes generally a lengthening of the times of falling asleep, while depression usually causes an early awakening; both show a reduction of the stages of deep sleep, with easy nocturnal awakenings accompanied by difficulty in resuming sleep.
If appropriate to the various stimulus situations anxiety is a normal body's defense mechanism, a fundamental in determining the best response of each individual, both biological and behavioral, to external stresses. It becomes a "pathological" reaction when he takes the characteristics of a state of persistent alarm, dominated by excessive worry to many life situations evaluated disproportionately and a feeling of imminent threat, as indefinite fear against a generic danger. Often accompanied by muscle tension, tremors, palpitations, excessive sweating, difficulty concentrating, insomnia, frequently anxiety is associated with depression, and it comes in this case of anxiety-depression disorder.
Also called "dark evil" or "boredom of life," is a disorder becoming increasingly common in Western nations, especially in its form not serious defined mild or moderate. Different from common variations of mood that can be caused by unfavorable circumstances of life, it consists in a state of despair, sadness and chilling without apparent way out; lack of ability to react, decreased interest or pleasure in all, or almost all, activities; low self-esteem and feelings of guilt inappropriate. Depressive illness can occur without a reason apparent, or as a result of difficult periods of life. But Also certain diseases, medications, or natural and physiological events as childbirth, menstrual cycle, puberty, or age, may trigger it. Even mild forms of depression affect in important ways on quality of life, the working efficiency, the normal friendships, family relations. The most recent Research also suggest that depression may lower the reaction ability of the immune system, whereby the depressed get sick more easily.
How does the brain
The brain is composed of billions of cells called neurons. The activity of the entire nervous system (CNS) is based on the transmission certain electrical messages from one neuron to another, at speeds high. The passage of these pulses occurs through the points of contact between a nerve cell and the other, called synapses. When the electrical pulse generated by a neuron arrives at synapses causes the release of specific chemical substances, neurotransmitters, which pass to the next neuron, where lead to the departure of a new electrical signal. Neurotransmitters, therefore they act as "messengers" between the various neurons are of different types: serotonin, norepinephrine, dopamine, acetylcholine, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). The neurons tend to "specialize" using mainly a type of neurotransmitter and forming of "systems": neurons that use serotonin are the serotonergic system, those using norepinephrine the noradrenergic system, and so on.
Next to the nervous system and plays a key role in adjustment of the basic metabolic functions, dell'istintivitą and of the affective sphere, the hypothalamus, a small gland that He coordinates and directs the entire endocrine system. Directly sensitive to the needs of the organism through its specific receptors, it controls the release of hormones, another type of messengers chemical released directly into the blood stream, where they It transports to target cells of the whole organism. The two regulatory systems, nervous and endocrine systems, are closely interconnected: in some cases the release of hormones is stimulated or inhibited by the nervous system, while some hormones can stimulate or inhibit nerve impulses. Just think of the production adrenaline (a hormone) in stressful situations, or action sedative CNS melatonin (another hormone).
Anxiety and depression: the role of neurotransmitters Mood disorders, such as anxiety and depression, are especially linked to a "malfunction" of the transmission of signals between neurons, due to the alteration of the amount of certain neurotransmitters in the brain. In particular: "At the base of the depression there is a shortage of the neurotransmitter serotonin between the synapses of the nerve cells serotonergic system, with repercussions on mood, on affection, social life and numerous other functions important physiological. "Anxiety is instead attributed to excessive production of other types of excitatory neurotransmitters such action (beta-carboline, aspartic acid, glutamic acid). Normally produced in greater amount of physiological anxiety in situations, where they are the normal adaptation of the organism to a situation emergency, in case of anxiety syndrome these substances remain in high amounts in the brain without apparent cause.
Insomnia: the waves of the brain and sleep stages While falling asleep, going through the early stages of sleep (Phases 1 and 2) to the stages of deep sleep (stages 3 and 4), occurs a progressive state of consciousness suspension of activities body and sensitivity. This corresponds to an increase of amplitude of the brain waves, which by frequent and low amplitude (Alpha waves in the subject to rest, beta waves in the subject was waking) become far more extensive and slow (delta waves, typical the deep sleep). Follows the so-called REM phase, in which, even if the body is asleep, the brain's electrical activity resumes as in wakefulness and dreams. This sequence of steps is repeated cyclically during sleep at about 90 minute intervals. "In insomniacs the correct succession of the phases of sleep Physiological is altered: there are those who take longer to arrive to deep sleep, some people have a "light sleep", which presents a significant reduction of these important stages. This obviously implies an insufficient rest of the organism, which, if sustained over time, it can lead to both mental disorders (Chronic fatigue, anxiety and depression), and physical.
Stress affects more or less all of us as a result of frenetic pace of modern society. The organization has exceptional system of adaptation to stress, represented by a series of compensatory mechanisms that allow us to "adapt" to any adverse situation. But when stress becomes chronic, the "state of alarm" permanent, reserved under normal conditions only to situations exceptional, it may, over time, cause the actual conditions. Commonly defined psychosomatic disorders, include both disorders behavioral sphere (anxiety, insomnia, depression, excessive aggression or apathy, etc.) and physical disorders real (cardiovascular disorders, skin diseases, allergic reactions, appetite disorders, problems digestive, etc.).
Stress and digestive problems One of the most common consequences of nervous tension by stress, in conjunction with diet and often little hasty balanced, it is a bad digestion. Heartburn stomach, abdominal cramps, colitis and swellings lower abdomen are the most common symptoms.
Life Style and Power
There are some simple food hygiene rules to be put in act against these disorders. First, it can be helpful to the reduction of all substances exciting or stimulants such as coffee, tea, the preparations Guarana (which are also served in the disco bar), the drugs, anorectic agents (those that serve to lose appetite). These in fact, substances, may decrease the hours of sleep and bring out, in susceptible persons, anxiety and / or depressants that otherwise would not have even appeared. Then remember that taking large quantities of drinks alcohol, especially at night, can shorten sleep and cause evidence of withdrawal symptoms in the early morning, so we Wake restless and agitated. Last, it is a good idea to practice a constant, albeit lightweight, daily physical activity to "download" the little anxieties the day (10-15 minutes a day is enough, even a simple walk).
If you have sleeping problems, even minor, may be help some "little tricks":
Lie down every night at the same hour "Avoid coffee or other stimulants, especially in the second half of the day "Eat light meals in the evening and have dinner at least two hours before bedtime "Practicing any physical activity to download the daily tensions "Provide a comfortable environment to rest "Use low pillows and firm mattresses, avoid too tight clothing and constrictive. Bed sheets and pajamas are preferred natural material (cotton, linen, silk) because they allow better breathability "Before going to bed take a warm bath and / or devote a few minutes to relaxing activities "Do not stay awake in bed for a long time, so do not establishing an association Mental between being in bed and being restless.
I'm depressed, I'm anxious or are just tired? The signs of depression may look similar, in many cases, to those of a severe tiredness or an anxious state. It should also be It stated that anxiety and depression are often associated, and it comes in this case of anxious-depressive disorders, which constitute about 60% of all cases of depression. For more easily evaluate their symptoms, we are reported below general guidance based on some tables made from Italian Society of Psychiatry:
Start the day with enthusiasm, but can not keep the rhythm. He wants to do things but easily fatigued. Concludes the day discouraged. The future is clear: tomorrow it will be better.
Everything about the the future is perceived as uncertain. It has the feeling of not being able to do everything should. He fights his own crisis with an excess of anguish of activity. After the acute crisis finds good humor and joy of live. He knows he is ill, often goes the doctor and tends to abusing drugs. From the other he wants to be understood: uses a lot of words, images, gestures, to explain how he feels. He hopes in the future: afraid only of new anxiety attacks.
Already since awakening is destroyed from the perspective of day waiting for him. He lost the will to undertake any initiative and if he scolds. Do not even try to fight. What surrounds him indifferent leaves. The best time of the day is the evening, although His suffering is constant and lasting. He senses that his malaise It comes from within. Often we ignore the problem, hesitate to go to the doctor and in any case does not believe that there is a chance of getting out. He declined to talk and apologizes frequently with others to "steal" of the time it does not deserve. The future is dark: nothing can change. Drugs
The anxiolytic-hypnotic used are benzodiazepines, which They work by stimulating the release of GABA, a neurotransmitter sedative CNS. Antidepressants are currently more wide therapeutic use, said new generation also, They act instead by enhancing serotonergic transmission, in According to the theory that the basis of depression there would a deficiency in this neurotransmitter between nerve cells. It is powerful molecules, specifically "designed" for exercise targeted action on specific "target-sites" (receptors neurotransmitters). Besides the undoubted effectiveness, present However, several side effects. For this reason the use of drugs should be limited to cases clearly needed and only if the doctor considers it appropriate in based on careful assessment of the seriousness of the case, in order to avoid to fight with "weapons" too powerful an occasional problem or however otherwise solvable.
Medicinal plants sedative, anxiolytic and antidepressant, now scientifically demonstrated by the effectiveness of modern studies clinical and of which are known the main action mechanisms pharmacological, may well combine and integrate the approach classic treatment of these disorders. "For forms of mild and moderate or occasional can a viable alternative, certainly to be recommended all before opting for synthetic drugs, especially if you are not ever undertaken a pharmacological therapy. In all other cases, or those already being treated, can still represent a valuable contribution to the wellbeing general organism. This is with a view to integrate drug treatment in some cases indispensable, it is, where appropriate, in prospect of gradually replace the treatment with drugs for the benefit of an exclusively natural therapy.
The most important rule is not to discontinue therapy Pharmacological so abrupt and on its own initiative. In case of intake of antidepressants in particular should Always consult your doctor before making any changes the type and dosage of medications they are taking.
An ancient medicine that follows all the rules of science Modern medical. Based on scientifically demonstrable principles, Phytotherapy uses of the active substances naturally present in plants using the entire plant complex. The term "plant complex" refers to the principles of complex active (the demonstrated biological activity substances mentioned in Title of the product), and other substances originally present in the plant. These "other substances" are important because modulate the action of the active ingredients and regulate the absorption. It is the set of all components of the plant complex, a "Complicated and perfect formulation made by nature" and not obtainable with the drug synthesis, to ensure success the herbal product. The advantages of the phytocomplex compared to the single active ingredient ranging from minimal side effects to action much more balanced and complete to the body. Action is slower and more gradual compared to drugs that we know, but often enough to solve many of the most common ailments that plague us daily. Even when they can not fully replace the drug, however, natural products are an ideal partner for it, either in support its actions to reduce the side effects.
Anxiety and Insomnia: how to remedy them so natural and without side effects
Often linked to each other, one can be the cause of the other and vice versa. The effective medicinal plants in these disorders favoring act relaxation and preparing the body to sleep physiological. Do not addictive, do not leave numbness when you wake up and do not change in any way the efficiency the subject during the day. None of the subsequently described presents phytocomplexes specific contraindications or significant side effects. In case pregnancy, to breastfeeding mothers and infants is recommended however, as a general precaution, to always consult your doctor.
Passiflora incarnate It is called "Passion Flower" for the shape of the flower that reminds tools of the crucifixion of Christ. Employed since 1800 for its effective sedative and anxiolytic activity, Passiflora was administered to soldiers during the First World War against the so-called "war angst". Also suitable for children, it is very useful in anxiety and in cases insomnia caused by anxiety. From studies following prolonged treatment, the sedative Passiflora appears highly selective and devoid of any toxicity. It also shows a good antispasmodic action level digestive and genitourinary tract. Quality is expressed by Title in total flavonoids, located in summit. It is advisable to assume a corresponding quantity of extract to about 60 mg per day of total flavonoids, possibly to reduce in the case of associations with other sedative plants.
Valeriana officinalis Probably the best known among the sedative plants, known since since the Middle Ages, is perhaps the one that has the most number of studies and research. Indicated in a particular way in the event of insomnia, is capable of significantly reducing significantly the time required to fall asleep. It induces a physiological sleep and it does not interfere with the intake of alcohol. Also useful in gastrointestinal spasms, especially of nervous origin, and in case of tachycardia. Quality is expressed in the title acid Total valerenici, contained in the root. Yes recommended to take an amount of extract corresponding to about 2.5 mg per day valerenici acids, possibly by reducing in case of combinations with other plants sedative.
Eschscholtzia californica Also known as "California poppy" (Californian Poppy), this papaveracea It was formerly used by Indians of America as a sedative and analgesic. Indicated as an effective inducer sleep, oxidant type rebalancing Overall, not a sedative and narcotic. Exhibition also a good antispasmodic action intestinal level, useful in case of colitis, and it is effectively employed against headaches (headaches). Unlike poppy, its "narrow relative ", it does not induce dependence and virtually free of toxicity. The quality is expressed by the Title in protopina, present in the summit. It is advisable to assume a corresponding quantity of extract to about 0.3 mg of protopine, to reduce in the case of associations with other sedative plants.
Melissa officinalis It is called "the plant nervina from carminative note" for emphasize the dual soothing Melissa is on the System Nervous about that painful spasms of the stomach and intestines. Indicated especially in case of anxiety, it is just as effective in the treatment of disorders functional gastrointestinal (gastric pains, spastic colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, dyspepsia). The rosmarinic acid, one of the main components of the plant complex of Melissa, It is in fact endowed with a good activity analgesic and anti-inflammatory. The quality is expressed by the acid in Title rosmarinic, present in the leaves. We recommend to assume a quantity of extract corresponding to about 70 mg per day rosmarinic acid, to reduce in the case of associations.
Insomnia and children a natural solution.
It is characterized by difficulty in falling asleep and / or waking Frequently. It can depend on a bad digestion, due to the habit to eat at night (typical gaseous colic children, for example), the first teeth that sprout from noise, the ambient temperature. Then there are the children called "hyperactive", always on the move and often distracted and inattentive at school, in which excessive anxiety can depend on psychological causes that often can not express. The herbal treatment should be oriented both toward phytocomplexes mildly sedative and anti-anxiety towards phytocomplexes to antispasmodic action on the smooth muscle of the gastrointestinal tract, right to associate to a general effect tranquillizzatore a soothing effect on the stomach and intestines. Excellent Chamomile, Passionflower and also in association with Melissa and possibly with other plant compounds with light soothing, like Lime and Bitter Orange.
Chamomilla recutita Plant to moderate sedative action, Chamomile acts primarily as soothing and antispasmodic mucous membranes of the digestive canal, particularly in the stomach, over which it exercises Also effective protective action against gastritis and ulcers. Suitable especially for insomnia of children, it is very useful in cases of sleep disorders caused by small problems digestive. Soothing action in fact associated with a decided action antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory. The quality of the drug infusion is expressed in the title essence. The Official Pharmacopoeia (FU X) establishes a content minimum of 4 ml / kg. The quality of the extract is expressed, according to the FU X, from Title in flavonoids apigenino-like, mainly located in ligule of the head (the white petals of the flower). Using selected raw materials and limiting the process extractive ligule to the sun, it is possible to obtain a freeze-dried extract High Title, containing up to 4.5% of apigeninosimili flavonoids.
Depression valuable assistance from nature
Untreated depression can last for eight months on average-a year, much to the patient's suffering, but, what is worse, It is that it can also become chronic. It is therefore important to recognize and treat it. If it's not a depression severe, generally characterized by recurrence seasonal or episodic, may be sufficient to have one type therapy natural, it being understood that must always be the doctor, according to patient's condition, to decide the therapy to be taken considering inter effects side and care benefits. The herbal approach has shown a significant clinical efficacy in thousands of cases of depression of mild and moderate, with the great advantage, compared to drugs, not to present side effects. The studies St. John's Wort are of course related, now defined by the mass media and scholars from around the world, "the plant antidepressant."
Hypericum perforatum. Called "St. John's wort" (St. John's wort) because it blooms June 24, the day dedicated to the saint, is now used successfully for several years in the treatment of depression. Numerous controlled clinical studies have been conducted in comparison with placebo and reference drugs in the therapeutic efficacy confirmation of the plant. Indicated in case of mild to moderate depression, it acts primarily increasing serotonergic transmission, so similar to the new-generation antidepressants. It 'was, however, made especially for the Hypericum the phrase: "many streams leading to a river ", to indicate how, in fact, not one but a multiplicity of mechanisms are at the basis of effectiveness plant complex. None of them, taken alone, is sufficient to explain global action observed for the hypericum plant complex, but the overall result is an action very balanced and devoid of side effects.
The Hypericum, alongside an effective antidepressant, has then a slight anxiolytic. Such action can be enhanced and strengthened by association with other anti-anxiety drugs phytocomplexes more specific, such as Passiflora and Melissa, with efficient formulation indicated in case of anxiety associated to depression. The St. John's Wort has no adverse effect on alertness, attention and memory, does not alter the phases of sleep and does not cause any addiction. The only side effect reported in the literature is a possible cutaneous photosensitivity, found, however, with the assumption high doses (30 to 50 times the recommended dose) and subjects from very light complexion. During therapy with St. John's Wort, As a general precaution, however, we do not recommend the prolonged exposure to sunlight or sunlamps. The quality is expressed by the Title in hypericin, present in the summit flowering. It is advisable to assume a corresponding quantity of extract at least 1.2 - 1.5 mg per day of hypericin.
The Phytotherapy is based on the action of natural biological active ingredients present in medicinal plants. Any substance with biological activity, "operate" It should be administered to the body above a certain minimum quantity, defined "minimum effective dose". For the Passiflora, for example, this dose is represented by approximately 60 mg per day of total flavonoids (which are the active ingredients). The amount of the active ingredients in the plant extracts, which should always be indicated in the title of the product, it is in usually expressed as a percentage value. A high titer is not however, sufficient to ensure the effectiveness: what matters is take the right amount of active ingredients throughout the day. So: what is the correct amount of extract to be taken to make sure that they have reached the effective dose?
A Practical Example
Let us examine our passion flower extract. "First you read the title Let's say you have: Title in total flavonoids 5%. This means that for every 100 mg of extract I 5 mg of active ingredients. "Look then the amount of extract contained in each operculum (or compressed) of the product Let us assume that the amount of extract contained in Passiflora each capsule is 300 mg. In any operculum they are therefore present 15 mg of active ingredients (5 mg / 100 mg × 300 mg = 15 mg). To take 60 mg of p.a. Recommended as a daily dose so you'll have to take 4 capsules a day (15mg × 4 = 60 mg). Alternatively you can find directly indicates the milligrams of active ingredients contained in each operculum (in our example we would have: "each operculum corresponds to 15 mg of flavonoids Total "). It becomes in this case even easier to calculate number of capsules to be taken to achieve the daily dose recommended.
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