9 Ancient Methods for Treating Depression

The ‘Talk’ Therapy

In 1917, Sigmund Freud who explained depression as a response to loss (death of loved ones, or failure to meet a target) which weakens the ego and bring about constant self-hate, recommended psychoanalysis (the “talking cure”) to help stop unconscious conflicts and self-abusive thoughts.

Talk therapy involves learning ways to react to things and challenging your preconceptions. – This became the leading treatment for autism and manic depression in the 1950s.

Read also: Shocking Stories of Trepanation (Photos)

Electroconvulsive therapy

There is evidence that the ancient physicians performed electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) on those with depression.

In the early years of 1900s, ECT was a relatively common treatment for the affective disorders, especially depression with psychotic features and severe mania. Jarrie HF estimated in a paper on the treatment of depression with electroconvulsive therapy, and that one third of the 60,000 hospitalized patients in England and Whales would receive ECT.

Tuberculosis Medication

In 1952, medical experts discover isoniazid, a tuberculosis medication was good in treating people with depression. This discovery paved way for the greater use of medication for the treatment of depression and other mental illness.

The Walking Cure

“We were never designed for the sedentary, indoor, socially isolated, fast-food-laden, sleep-deprived frenzied pace of modern life,” says Stephen Ildari, author of The Depression Cure. “There’s a profound mismatch between the genes we carry, the bodies and brains that they are building, and the world that we find ourselves in.”

Vincenz Priessnitz, a pioneer in alternative medicine gained fame throughout Europe in the 1800s, for curing his patients via bathing and walking barefoot in fields of grass.

Arctic root (Rhodiola rosea)

Science is beginning to understand how Arctic root works: a traditional Chinese medicine. The ancient herb has been used for depression for thousands of years. It is useful mostly for depression caused by seasonal affective disorder (SAD), and works by increasing the activity of the mood-enhancing neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine.

Read also: Can Air Pollution Cause Alzheimer’s?

Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs)

In the 1950’s and 60’s, tricyclic antidepressants were used by the doctors to treat moderate to severe depression. TCAs (amitriptyline (Elavil), protriptyline (Vivactil), desipramine (Norpramin)) work by increasing the level of norepinephrine in the brain synapses.

References / Further Readings:

Rashmi Nemade, Ph.D., Kathryn Patricelli, MA. Historical Understandings of Depression - GracePointWellness.

A Short History of Postparturm Depression, from 1950 - http://mapleleafmommy.com/mom-life/postpartum-depression-in-1950s-my/

An Historical Review of Electroconvulsive Therapy - Jefferson

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top