Healing Depression Naturally: #3 -Positive Ions, The Secret Negative Factor in Depression
Have you ever considered that it is the environment that is causing your depression?
Q. Lewis, what are ions and how can they affect my emotions?
This story is part of a series designed to give you tools, tips, techniques, strategies, and solid solutions for managing your depression as well as many other mental and emotional challenges. The short introduction to the series can be read at…
A. Now to answer your question. Ions are negatively or positively charged particles in the air. Too many positively charged particles can play havoc with your brain.
How Ions Were Discovered
In 1899, two scientists named Elster and Geitel proved the existence of ions, electrically charged particles in the air. The beneficial effect of some of these ions was initially discovered by Dr. C.W. Hansell at RCA Laboratories in 1932. Dr. Hansell was shocked and surprised by the eme, violent mood shifts he observed in a co-worker who was sitting next to an electrostatic generator. This same colleague seemed to become ebullient when the machine produced negative ions, and sad and depressed when it made positive ions.
Research conducted since the 1930s on ions has shown that…
…positive ions generally have a negative effect on physical and emotional health. On the other hand, negative ions enhance physical and emotional functioning stimulating everything from libido to plant growth. This discovery explains much about violent or docile behavior in various tribes and cultures throughout the world.
It is now known that there are certain notorious kinds of winds that blow throughout the world. Imbalanced ratios of positively charged ions to negatively charged ions (up to a ratio of 33 to 1) are associated with many physical and emotional problems in about ninety-five percent of those who make contact with them. Among these problems is depression. Those notorious sea and desert winds are known throughout the world as a cause of these problems and are known by many names including; Karaburan in the Gobi desert, the Chinook of the United States Rockies, and the Santa Ana from the southern California desert. These winds can really make you act destructively.
What causes these winds? About half of these ions are formed by nature in a variety of ways. Many formed from ultraviolet rays, cosmic rays, radioactive substances in the soil, air-flow friction, and radioactive gases. The other fifty percent are produced by falling water and plants.
Though there are different theories on the perfect ratio of positive to negative ions, it is generally believed among ion researchers that a 2 to 1 ratio of negative to positive ions produces the healthiest reactions. If greatly out of balance this is what happens…
Research has shown that falling water creates thousands of negative ions by splitting neutral particles of air and freeing electrons to exhibit their energizing function. These electrons join up with smaller air particles, giving them a primarily negative charge. Ions are most readily absorbed through the olfactory nerves, and thus need to be breathed in through the nose, not the mouth. The inhaling of the ions produced by water-falls, and running baths and showers all increase negative ions and have a direct relationship to the lowering of serotonin levels in the blood (and possibly increasing it in the brain).
A depressed individual should try as much as possible to be in an area with a greater level of negative to positive ions. This is not always easy in our society since many of those things that we most take for granted in our industrial society actually produce high levels of undesirable positive ions. A few of these positive ion sources include tire dust, heating and cooking fumes, car exhaust, factory fumes, and cigarette smoke.
Many other factors can actually absorb the desirable negative ions, thus creating an excess of positive ions. Among things that can produce this undesirable effect include dust and soot, synthetic clothing and furniture coverings, synthetic building materials; metal ducts covering heating and air conditioning outlets, and concrete and steel buildings. In a typical interior containing many of the materials listed above, the negative ion count may be extremely low.
Many physicians specializing in the treatment of depression now believe that increasing negative ion levels can promote our capacity to absorb and utilize oxygen, thus accelerating the blood’s delivery of oxygen to our cells and tissues. Research also indicates that negative ions can increase alpha brain waves and brain wave amplitude, and reduce anxiety, neurosis and depression. As a result of these clear benefits, they recommend to suffering individuals, the purchase of negative ion generating machines. The development of safe and effective negative ion generators has been a long and complex process. Present ion units apply a high voltage electrical signal directly to the air to create an intense electric field around the emitters.
Ionizers are now used throughout the story, and the U.S. government has even placed them in nuclear submarines. Designers and architects include fountains and waterfalls and fountains in urban environments to bring the emotional benefits of nature indoors. Smaller, portable, individual models are inexpensive, car-friendly, and are easily available.
The beneficial effects of negative ions are not permanent. Researchers point out that their effectiveness remains only as long as they’re being inhaled. Dr. Krueger cautions that ‘’the biological (non-clinical) effects produced by atmospheric ions are not dramatic; on the contrary, they tend to be limited in degree.’’
If you decide to use a negative ionizer, keep the following in mind:
* If anything is between you and the ion generator, you will not receive the benefits of the ionizer.
* Dry indoor wintertime air may create a static charge that will often repel ions.
* Synthetic clothing absorbs ions. So wear natural fibers such as cotton or wool, which have neutral charges.
* Most machines produce one level of ion. However there is a trend to measure and allow people to dial their needs electrically. Some European machines already modulate frequency.
* Although advanced technology has eliminated many problems associated with previous ion devices, the quality of machines still varies greatly.
* To guarantee that an ion-producing device meets your needs, carefully examine the manufacturer’s literature. Purchase a product that offers a warranty on parts and labor, including a description of the room size affected by the machine.
The Very Positive Takeaway
Sadness or what we believe to be clinical depression may not require professional treatment. Often these emotions may be a normal temporary reaction to life events, a symptom of some medical condition, or a side effect of some drugs or medical treatments. If you are constantly in a depressed mood, especially in combination with other symptoms, you may wish to get professional help. Antidepressants should not be routinely used for the initial treatment of mild depression, because the risk-benefit ratio is poor. A healthy lifestyle, a support group, life skills training, bodywork/massage, physical activity, and many other approaches can have a protective effect against the emergence of depression.
Physical activity can also decrease depressive symptoms due to the release of neurotrophic proteins in the brain that can help to rebuild the hippocampus that may be reduced due to depression. Also, yoga, Tai Chi, and Creative Arts Therapy could be considered an ancillary treatment option for patients with depressive disorders and individuals with elevated levels of depression.
Reminiscence of old and fond memories is another alternative form of treatment, especially for the elderly who have lived longer and have more experiences in life. It is a method that causes a person to recollect memories of their own life, leading to a process of self-recognition and identifying familiar stimuli. By maintaining one’s personal past and identity, it is a technique that stimulates people to view their lives in a more objective and balanced way, causing them to pay attention to positive information in their life stories, which would successfully reduce depressive mood levels.
Self-help books are a growing form of treatment for people’s physiological distress.
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About the Author: Lewis Harrison, is a Results-Oriented Life Coach, speaker, and strategist specializing in Self Improvement, Personal Development, and Happiness.
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