“A Stable Mind is Impossible Without a Balanced Brain.”
It may come as a surprise to learn that there are as many as 10 physical causes of depression (and this is true for most mental health conditions including anxiety, bipolar disorder, OCD, ADD and most others). This means that different underlying physical problems can cause the same presenting symptoms. For example, one person’s symptom of depression may be caused by low levels of serotonin, a natural brain chemical essential for stable moods, another person’s symptoms may be a result of gluten intolerance and for a third individual, a yeast infection called Candida. So though they may all look the same to a therapist or doctor and feel the same to the patient, the treatment needed to fix the problem may be completely different. What this points to, is that a one-sized fits all approach will only help some people.
Little know to most mental health professionals is an is an emerging field called Functional Medicine which uses specific laboratory testing to identify the “root causes” underlying psychiatric symptoms, and then utilizes natural means to address the issue. Some of the well-known biological factors that can create or make mental health symptoms worse, include hormone imbalances, low levels of vitamins and minerals such as B6, B12 or Zinc, food sensitivities, low thyroid and numerous other factors. Only by identifying the specific problem can we get to the bottom of what is really going on, and provide real help. Dr. Charles Gant, MD, a pioneer in Mental Health Functional Medicine says in his teachings “Unless you test, you’ve guessed.”
At Integrative Psychotherapy, we view Functional Medicine as a revolutionary tool that can often help to people who have not had full alleviation of mental health symptoms from more traditional treatment. As such, Dr. Friedman provides education to interested parties about the benefits and options of Functional Medicine testing for mental health.