All posts by Todd Pierce

Teenagers and Depression: Advice for When to Seek Professional Counseling

Should you be conserned if your teenager is showing signs of depression?
Well the short quick answer is yes. But it is not as easy as it sounds to just be conserned.

Anyone who has more than one teenager can tell you that sometimes teenagers can be a little difficult, some more so than others.

And while it is very true that you do need to be conserned if your child is showing signs of depression. Sometimes it is better to take a wait and see approach. (But not if your child is doing things that can cause harm to themselves or others)

What I mean by a wait and see approach is this. Take a little extra time to just listen to what your teenager is saying. You can listen and at the same time not agree with what they are saying. But by taking time to listen to what your teen is saying. You may “hear” what they are not saying.

You may discover that they have been being ridiculed or teased by someone, and they are not handling this well. They may have changed their behaviour trying to conform to what they think that will make them popular with their peers. Or at the least make them less of a target to be picked on.

But the choices they have made may not really be in their best interest. Teenagers can decide to do some very dangerous things, and to socialize with people who they really do not need to be.

The teen years can be difficult, and sometimes it is best to just stay up late and let your teen talk to you. About anything, and try to just listen. This can be hard at times. But if your child is showing signs of depression, the first thing you want to do is make an extra effort to listen to what is going on in their life.

Your teen may be showing some signs of depression, but that does not always mean they need to be put on medication for depression. (sometimes it is needed but not always).

While it may seem difficult to know when to seek professional assistance, sometimes you can help your child work through a mild case of depression just by taking extra time with them. But if despite everything you do to help your child work through depression there is no improvement. Or if you notice that your child is loosing all interest in things once important to them. Then it is in your child’s best interest to seek the assistance of a professional counselor.

Teenagers can and do become severly depressed at times. Just as older people do. But from my personal experience sometimes just having someone to listen to me talk helps a lot. And I was at one time a very depressed teenager. I did attempt suicide. Not every depressed teen will do that, but some will.

Also sometimes when a child or teenager is depressed or showing signs of depression it can be because of some sort of abuse that is going on. Especially sexual abuse. The teen years are difficult by themselves, because of the bodily changes that are going on, and the added expectations at school and home. Then add in sexual abuse and that can push someone over the edge.

That was what pushed me over the edge as a teenager. I had already delt with many things including being homeless, and going to many different school. It was not until I was much older that I realized some of the many reasons for my depression.

It is because of what I felt and delt with as a teenager that I try to take extra time to listen to my teenagers now. I am not always as good at that as I should be. But I do try to take time to listen as often as possible.

And I do believe that sometimes it is wise for a parent to take their child for professional counselling. Because sometimes teenagers can not see that the problems they have today, will pass.

Aromatherapy – the Magic of Scented Candles

Picture a romantic dinner for two, or even a quiet evening after a harried, stressful day, one feature is common in both of them, the flickering flame of candles along with their sweet fragrance.

We are stressed, there is no getting away from this. Our jobs, the commute to work, the current global meltdown, incompetent service providers all create tensions that affect both our minds and bodies. I like to unwind with a long soak in the bathtub in a darkened bathroom lit up with scented candles. For me it is the best aromatherapy ritual, one that I look forward to the whole day.

Just what is aromatherapy?

To put it simply, it is the use of essential or volatile oils sourced from plants and natural sources to cure emotional and physical illnesses. Aromatherapists believe that properly applied, this can cure deadly ailments like diabetes and cancer too. I know for a fact that it can relax a person, but would shy away from such tall claims.

Using scented candles is becoming more and more popular in today’s world. A person using the candles to create ambience for a perfect romantic evening, or to reduce stress and anger should ensure that the candles are made of substances that are natural, so that they are more effective.

They are easily available in holistic stores or online, easy to store and use. Prior to making a purchase, one should check if the candles contain natural plant essences and not chemicals.

I also urge you to try and ensure that the wax is also natural, so that when burning, it releases more healing aromatic smoke.

I prefer beeswax candles, they are pure and full of natural fragrance. Beeswax has been proven effective in cleansing the air. It is an excellent detoxifying agent and its sweet smell creates a very mellow mood.

The other option is to use paraffin candles, these are slow burning and long lasting, but since they are petroleum bases, most aromatherapists do not approve of them

Recently when I went to shop for candles for a party we had at home, I was surprised to see soy candles. They are natural, biodegradable and non-toxic. They are also aromatic. Of course they are not a patch on beeswax candles, which is something I love. But they are much more economical and clean burning.

Feng Shui Candles are also nice, they are available in different colours and are made as per the Chinese beliefs of achieving proper balance and cleansing the Chi or life energy

Scented votives candles are also good. They can be used in prayers or also used to decorate a room or create a good ambience. Their small size and circular shapes make them easy to use and tuck into small corners and niches to create a lovely atmosphere.

This world is harsh and chaotic and stress is a major cause of health problems. I really enjoy the calmness I gain from the wonderful fragrances of natural, organic candles and their mellow flickering lights.

Dangers of Essential Oils

Essential oils have some amazing medicinal and therapeutic properties if used properly, but they can also be dangerous if not used properly.

Because essential oils are made from plant extracts, the likelihood of allergic reaction is high, especially for those who are known to have hay fever or other plant based, pollen, or grass type allergies.

There is also the possibility of toxicity when overused or not used properly. It’s important to note that essential oils, while having therapeutic properties, are not classified as medications and therefore are not regulated like over the counter drugs would be. Therefore, there is not a requirement to list contraindications on the labels and warnings are also not required.

If you plan to use essential oils for any purpose, including simply using them as a fragrance source, it is important to be aware of the potential dangers.

When using essential oils, whether for aromatherapy or for treating certain conditions, it is important to keep the following in mind:

Do not use essential oils directly on your skin if you are pregnant. While there are some that your doctor may discuss with you to use, unless your doctor or medical professional clearly tells you to use them, stay away from essential oils while pregnant or nursing – period.

Do not use essential oils for aromatherapy on anyone under the age of five and then use caution for essential oil aromatherapy on all children, and it is recommended that essential oils not be used directly on the skin of anyone under the age of twelve.

If using essential oils directly on the skin, a skin patch test should be performed to test for allergic reaction prior to any treatment. This can be accomplished by touching a very small amount of essential oil to the inside of the wrist and waiting 24 hours to see if there is a reaction of any kind. If the skin reacts in any way, such as turning red, blotchy, burning, itchy, swollen, etc, then do not use that particular essential oil for any reason, including aromatherapy.

Never use essential oils near sensitive skin, around the eyes, broken skin, or near mucous membranes.

Research each oil before use for toxicity and likelihood of allergic reaction as well as for instructions on how to properly use each essential oil.

Essential Oil Skin Allergy Dangers

Essential oils that are known to have a higher than average allergic reaction on the skin are:

Basil, Bay, Benzoin, Birch, Black Pepper, Cinnamon, Cassia, Citronella, Clove, Cumin, Fennel, Fir, Lemongrass, Verbena, Oak Moss, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Pimento Berry, Pine (high), Thyme, Wintergreen, and others that may not be listed here

Remember, just because an essential oil is not listed here doesn’t mean it won’t cause an allergic reaction to your skin; these are just some of the oils known to have a higher than average allergy reaction rate when used on the skin.

Essential Oil Aromatherapy Dangers

When using essential oils for aromatherapy, you should do a bit of research to determine what scent, or as the name implies, aroma, offers the result you are seeking. For example, some aromas will wake up your senses and help energize you, while others will calm you and help you rest or sleep.

As with any drug, if you are using essential oils for relaxation or to aid with sleep, you need to be careful not to use the same oils while operating a car or heavy machinery or at any other time when concentration should not be impaired.

Some essential oils that may cause concentration disruption or cause drowsiness are:

Benoin, Carnation, Camomile, Geranium, Hops, Hyacinth, Lavender, Mace, Marjoram, Nutmeg, Sandalwood, Valerian, Ylang-Ylang, as well as others tha tmay not be listed here

Essential Oil Toxicity Dangers

As wonderful as the benefits of some essential oils are, it is important to note that some essential oils can indeed be dangerously toxic, especially when absorbed through the skin or taken internally. In fact, no essential oil should ever be ingested without first consulting a licensed physician who is trained in the use of essential oils as a therapeutic tool. The risks of oral ingestion toxicity is simply too great – that’s how powerfully effective essential oils can be.

However, there are some essential oils that have a higher than normal toxicity level, and even some that have been banned in the United States due to their potent and toxic nature. Please note that while the names of these essential oils listed below may sound familiar – such as almond or mustard – this doesn’t mean eating almonds or using mustard condiments on your food is dangerous. What it means is that the essential oil extracted from the plant is too potently dangerous for household use.

Some of the essential oils that have a higher than normal toxicity include:

Almond Bitter, Prussic acid (commonly known as cyanide – highly lethal, even in small doses), Boldo, Calamus, Camphor (excellent in small doses for skin conditions, but highly toxic by oral ingestion), Cassia, Horseradish, Mugwort, Mustard, Pennyroyal, Rue, Sassafras, Savin (sabinyl acetate), Tansy, Thuja, Wintergreen (Methyl Salicylate), Wormseed, Wormwood

Again, it is always best to consult a physician when using any household, homeopathic, or over the counter treatment for anything therapeutic benefit, and essential oils are no different. Additionally, be very careful using any essential oils, even aromatherapy, around children, pregnant or nursing women, and even some small pets.

Essential oils aren’t dangerous to the point they should be avoided, as long as you know what you are using and take precautions. Do the research before you use any essential oil and be sure you are using them properly and essential oils can have wonderful benefits both through aromatherapy and therapeutic qualities.

A Guide to Purchasing Aromatherapy Products

The first task that you will need to do when it comes to purchasing aromatherapy products is actually to determine what it is that you are looking for. There are many essential oil choices that you can select from. Each one of these fragrances can provide you with something different whether that is a bit of relaxation or a bit of romance. Determine what you would like the most out of all the options that you have in aromatherapy. There are so many options that you will want to select a few, but make sure you only select what you can use.

Then, you will want to find a high quality merchant to provide you with the right products for the job. You should always use high quality essential oils when you want the full effect (or any effect for that matter) from the aromatherapy process. Look for products that are fresh, in a dark colored glass bottle from a manufacturer that you trust. The good news is that there are some great merchants offering their aromatherapy products on the web so you do not have to look too hard to find just what you need.

You can learn more about the merchants that are available on the web through doing a bit of research about them. A great tip to let you know how well they will treat you is to send off an email about their products. Ask a question that is not too obvious about the product itself. How do they respond if they do? What quality of service are you getting? It is likely that good customer service will lead to high quality products too. Keep in mind that if your purchase something that is not a pure essential oil that is in date then you will not get the benefits that the product should provide to you.

Benefits of Hydrogen Peroxide Therapy

Home remedies have grown in popularity over the last decade as more families are looking for ways to treat common ailments on a very limited budget. If your family is struggling with an illness, and if you do not have the money to pay for traditional medical care, it is important to consider home remedies as a safe option but only under limited circumstances. Hydrogen peroxide, found in most households, is one such home remedy that can provide a use when illness befalls your family.

Hydrogen peroxide therapy is a common home remedy for many families, especially for conditions that even afflict children – including ear infections and ear pain. If you are concerned about the health of your family, having a bottle of hydrogen peroxide in the house will be important to curing many typical family ailments.

While some therapies, such as progesterone therapy in pregnancy, requiring physician’s prescription and physician supervision, the modest use of hydrogen peroxide does not require this same supervision. It is important, however, to use the hydrogen peroxide minimally at first to see how the respective infection responds to the home remedy option.

For many people with ailments such as ear infections, hydrogen peroxide therapy, by placing a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in the ear, can clear up infection in just a few days. To be effective at treating bacterial infections, the hydrogen peroxide must be applied three times per day, typically for seven to 10 days. In most cases, side effects are not seen however there can be some discomfort with the use of the remedy at the first application.

When cutting costs in your healthcare budget, if you are concerned about the health impact of a bacterial infection, be sure to consider hydrogen peroxide therapy as a viable option. For many families, this is a great addition to the medicine cabinet and cures many bacterial infections with just a few applications – saving hundreds of dollars on physician office visit and prescription medications.

Sources: Traditional Home Remedies, by Martha White

Is Genetic Counseling for Mental Illness Playing God?

Because of serious mental illness being recognized as a real medical condition and a chemical imbalance in the brain and also because of its tendency to be hereditary, scientists have been conducting research to find a genetic marker or groups of genes that will determine a person’s subjectivity or likeliness to suffer from psychiatric illnesses.

Although it is highly controversial, scientists hope to be able to offer genetic counseling to the offspring of those suffering from mental illness in order to be able to treat and diagnose the illness earlier.

Because of the lack of knowledge of its determining factor, up until the present moment, psychiatrists are only able to diagnose based upon the reported symptoms of each individual, which has the propensity to be faulty if the patient does not report a symptom or recognize a symptom as a symptom.

Currently genetic disposition can be established for some illnesses. These illnesses include Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia, autism, and Huntington’s disease.

There are some setbacks currently with finding a genetic link to mental illnesses. One of the issues is that most mental illnesses are not determined by one gene only. There gene factors also vary depending upon their families and ethnicities.

The patient’s environments also have a strong influence on mental illness as well. So one gene alone can’t determine a person’s susceptibility to a mental illness, the person’s environment also plays just as much of a role.

And lastly there is the controversy that surrounds genetic testing for mental health illnesses. Those who oppose the testing are concerned about the confidentiality of the results of the genetic tests. The main concern is that insurance companies having access to the results and limiting or outright denying coverage to those with “pre-existing” illnesses.

It may also be possible for larger companies to have access to the information and discriminate on prospective employees because they are labeled or branded with the diagnosed illness.

They would also like to see the testing regulated by the federal government to make sure that it is valid and handled properly. Some would even like to see that genetic counseling be made mandatory. This could deter some people from becoming pregnant with a child that they are not able to provide the proper care for.

On the flipside, if the genetic counseling is made mandatory to determine whether the mother should give birth, the government in efforts to “normalize” society may try to abort all affected fetuses. Therefore choosing who deserves to live and who deserves to die.

If used solely for the purposes of diagnoses and treatment, then genetic counseling to determine mental illness would be very beneficial to society. However, if we use it to start playing God, then I find it highly unethical and inappropriate.

Retrieved from:
http://www.healthtree.com/articles/genetic-testing/disease-risk-profiling/mental-illness/

And They Say I’m Crazy.

I have been in therapy on and off for 25 years. My poor self-image, lack of confidence with girls, and insecurity led me to finally call a therapist at age 20. I didn’t know where to begin so I figured browsing through the Yellow Pages would be my best bet.

Big mistake.

I picked the closest therapist and made an appointment. She told me she worked out of her house. When I arrived, I was greeted by a heavy set middle-aged woman. She introduced herself and led me down to her basement office. She knew I was nervous and told me to sit on the floor and relax.

She brought out some huge fluffy pillows and encouraged me to get comfortable. Sitting on the floor and lying on oversized pillows seemed unusual to me, but what do I know. I told her my story and she made some helpful suggestions. She pointed out that my parents had mistreated me and I was clearly a victim.

Later, I found out that the patient is always told they’re the victim. It’s only your fault if somebody else is paying. (You learn that the first day of therapy school.)

Then the fun started. She asked me to pick up the fluffy pillow and hit her with it. She would then hit me back she explained. We then whacked each other for a good 5 minutes. I was just starting to enjoy it when she ordered me to stop. She then suggested that we hug for the last 5 minutes of the session. She said she was trying to show me that there was time for anger and time for kindness and I needed to learn the difference.

I awkwardly grabbed her and hugged away. I remember thinking how ironic this was. Here I am paying big money hugging this 60 year-old therapist and the real reason I’m here was that I couldn’t get a 20 year old girl to hug me. When she let go she asked me to make another appointment. I politely told her that she was not quite right for me. But when I bent down to tie my shoe as I was about to leave, she took the opportunity to smack me in the ass with that pillow. And they say I’m crazy…

My search for the right fit continued. This time I got a personal referral from my cousin. He raved about this psychiatrist. He said he was compassionate and smart as a whip. I gave his office a call. Feeling safe, I set up our first meeting.

My psychiatrist was a tall, distinguished man about 55. His office was very professional. Leather chairs, a mahogany desk, and hundreds of impressive psychology books in plain sight. This was the real thing I thought. My words poured out effortlessly. He encouraged me to bare my soul.

He seemed genuinely interested and concerned about my problems. But then the incessant twitching started. This man had every tick in the book. He shrugged his shoulders, he wiggled his nose, he scratched his ear, and his right foot never stopped tapping.

As you might imagine, this was a bit distracting. Here I am looking for answers to my problems and this guy is looking at the wax he just pulled out of his ears. He made a Turrets sufferer look like they were in a coma. Then it hit me. Maybe this was a test. Maybe he was conducting some kind of experiment. Maybe he wanted to see how I would cope with an uncomfortable situation. That has to be it I thought. No one could take this guy seriously if he really had that many nervous and annoying habits.

So, I decided to play along. Instead of getting turned off by his actions, I would show him my adaptability and patience by mimicking him. The next few minutes were reminiscent of a good Three Stooges episode.

He wiggled his ears and so did I. He smelled his fingers and so did I. He kept sticking out his tongue and so did I. As the session ended I thanked him and was determined to see him again. He informed me that this was our first and last meeting. Further more he chastised me for mocking his afflictions. I tried to explain but to no avail. I could not convince this insecure doctor that I was not mimicking him in a cruel way. As I left he charged me $200. Trying to stay in the spirit of our session I charged him $200 right back. You should have seen him twitch then. And they say I’m crazy…

After years of trial and error, I finally found the right psychiatrist in Dr. Harvey. He was my age and we had a lot in common. We shared the same culture and grew up in the same city. He helped me work through a lot of confusing feelings. I realized that by understanding my past behavior I could react differently when the situation came up again. This was a real breakthrough.

I looked forward to our sessions with one exception. I was always afraid of seeing someone I knew in his office. Then it happened. As I walked out into the lobby, there he was — Teddy Cohen. Teddy was a high school buddy of mine. I hadn’t seen him in 20 years. After the initial panic past I tried to be rational. After all Teddy was here to.. A sense of relief came over me. “It’s been 20 years how you doing?” Teddy said. “How do you think I’m doing Teddy? I’m coming out of a psychiatrist office,” I said with confidence.

“Steve, I’m Dr. Harvey’s CPA,” Teddy exclaimed. “I’m here to do his taxes.”

I learned a valuable lesson that day.

From then on, every time I visited Dr. Harvey’s office I protected myself by going dressed as a mailman. That way if somebody recognized me I could tell them the letter I was delivering was certifiable, not me. And they say I’m crazy…

How Play Therapy Can Boost a Child’s Self Esteem

Do you feel your child can use a boost of self-esteem? If you answered, “yes” then play therapy could be just the thing to help your child increase their level of self-esteem. To help understand what type of impact a low level of self esteem can have on a child’s overall life and how play therapy can help boost a child’s level of self esteem, I have interviewed therapist Matthew Morrissey.

Tell me a little bit about yourself.
“I am a licensed psychotherapist in full-time private practice in San Francisco, California. I work with children, teenagers, and adults who are dealing with such issues as depression, anxiety, grief, trauma, and relationship difficulties. I grew up as a pretty nerdy kid but then discovered skateboarding when I was 13. I was hooked and became obsessed with the sport for the next six years, becoming a sponsored amateur. Then in college I discovered a real love for philosophy and psychology. I ended up making the latter a profession and the former an abiding passion. I feel like I lead a pretty blessed life at the moment.”

What type of impact can a low level of self-esteem have on a child’s overall life?
“The impact can be extensive and should not be underestimated. Children with low self-esteem find it harder to develop close friendships. They tend to be shy and more isolated. Therefore they are at higher risk for being bullied. They are also more at risk for becoming depressed, and when this starts to occur the child may begin to develop sleep problems, have difficulty concentrating (and thus fall behind in school or act out in the classroom), and even develop physical ailments that are ways of communicating the distress. Furthermore, as the child is actively forming ideas about who she or he is as a person and what to expect from the environment, the child is at risk of developing skewed notions and expectations, and these can follow a child into adulthood.”

How can play therapy help boost a child’s self esteem?
“First, let me say a little about how play therapy works. In beginning a treatment relationship with a child, the therapist says something like this to him or her: “In my office, as you can see, there are lots of toys and things for playing. In playing here with me, I will start to understand who you are and what is most important to you.” The therapist then “gets out of the way” so to speak and lets the child run the show for the entire 50 minutes. The child may choose to play alone, in which case the therapist will make tactful, ongoing comments about the child’s play'”attempting as much as possible to enter the child’s world. Or the child may invite the therapist to assume a role in the play, in which case the therapist tries earnestly to become who the child needs at that moment.”

“A play therapy session is like administering a concentrated dose of relationship vitamins. The “vitamins” are the 100 percent uninterrupted attention of an adult, the lack of intrusion of the adult’s needs on the child’s play, and the delicate focus brought by the therapist onto the child’s feelings and conflicts as expressed in the play. Over time, the child absorbs these “vitamins.” The child is seen and heard by an adult in a way he or she probably did not imagine was even possible. This naturally raises self-esteem because the child gets consistent validation for many aspects of her or his self.”

What would a typical play therapy session be like for a child?
“Children are constantly looking for attention and recognition from adults. Yet it is all too easy for us adults to become consumed by the demands of our adult world. Therefore a play therapy session for children is like a special oasis in the week where very little demands are placed on them and where a kind of relaxation and exploration of self become possible. It is an artificial situation to be sure, but children drink it up like a glass of ice-cold lemonade on a hot summer day. They look forward to their visit with the therapist and they become upset when something interferes with the visit. Therapy is a time to get some extra-special recognition. Parents often report that their children’s mood improves markedly right after a play therapy session.”

What last advice would you like to leave for a parent who is considering play therapy to help boost their child’s self esteem?
“I would tell the parent(s) to find a therapist who she or he thinks will really connect with the child. I also would encourage the parent(s) to work closely with the therapist to identify ways the parent(s) can cement the gains made in the treatment.”

Thank you Matthew for doing the interview on how play therapy can boost a child’s self esteem. For more information on Matthew Morrissey or his work you can check out his on www.morrisseymft.com

Recommended Readings:
Art Therapy for Children
The Benefits of Clinical Hypnotherapy
Cognitive Behaviorial Therapy

How to Save Money on Therapy with a Psychologist or Psychiatrist

“The whole world’s in therapy!” my wife said the other evening as we were getting ready for bed. To be fair, she’d been reading a magazine about the number of celebrities who see a psychologist or psychiatrist on a regular basis, but she had a point. It sometimes seems as though therapy is the “trendy” way to handle one’s problems these days, but it can also be a healthy method of coping with trauma. If you’ve decided to seek therapy with a psychologist or psychiatrist, however, you might be looking for ways to save money on that exorbitant bill.

It’s supply and demand. Since a growing number of people are seeking therapy with psychologists and psychiatrists, these professionals know that they can charge more money and still keep their patients. The upshot is that this means a serious problem for those whose insurance coverage doesn’t pay for the entire cost of therapy, and it might seem almost impossible to save money.

1- Decrease Intervals

Although it is standard, you might not need therapy with your psychologist or psychiatrist once a week, or even once every two weeks. In fact, you might need therapy only on an as-needed basis, such as when feelings of depression begin to escalate, or during certain seasons of the year. You can save money on therapy by decreasing the intervals at which you attend sessions. For example, you might want to move down to once-a-month visits.

Of course, you don’t want to save money on therapy at the expense of your mental health. Some patients need weekly or twice-a-week visits in order to keep their mental stability in check, so you should discuss decreasing the intervals with your psychologist or psychiatrist. Weigh the benefits against the risks, then make your decision.

2- Negotiate the Price

In most cases, a psychologist or psychiatrist is operating as a one-man show, or in a private practice with two or three other professionals. In this case, he or she is free to set whatever rates seem appropriate, which means those per-session fees are totally negotiable. For example, if your therapist decides to raise the rates, you can save money on your therapy by negotiating a lower price. You could say, “I can’t pay this new amount, but how about we split the difference?”

To keep your business, a psychologist or psychiatrist may be willing to lower fees even without an across-the-board increase. If you have specific circumstances that require you to cut down on expenses, but you really need therapy on a regular basis, ask about a break on your bill. It doesn’t hurt to inquire, and you can always go with someone else.

3- Take Off-Hours

There are always times during the day that a psychologist or psychiatrist simply can’t get patients in their offices. Mid-mornings, for example, are notoriously difficult to fill because patients are at work or taking classes or otherwise occupied. If you are willing to take one of these off-hours slots, you might be able to save money on therapy.

How to Legally Purchase Hormones

Although the sale of hormones is regulated, there are certainly ways to buy them legally. Perhaps you have an imbalance that needs to be corrected, or maybe you’d just like a supplement. Whatever the case, there are several different ways in which you can legally purchase hormones, but make sure you are following federal and state law when you take part in this practice.

In order to legally purchase hormones in the United States, you usually need a prescription from either a doctor or a nurse practitioner. The physician will run blood tests and examine your medical history to determine why you need hormones and how much to prescribe. The reason for this is that hormones are powerful substances that need to be regulated in your body. Taking too much can have nasty repercussions, so make sure you’ve consulted a doctor.

The most popular type of physician to visit when you want to legally purchase hormones is an endocrinologist, but you can also get them from gynecologists and general practitioners. For transgendered individuals, it is best to obtain your prescriptions from the facility where you have been treated to date, as they will have your most complete medical history on hand.

Of course, there are other ways to legally purchase hormones. For example, online pharmacies are popular for this type of prescription, and many will write you one after answering just a few questions. They will want to know why you are looking to buy hormones and how you have been treated in the past. Have your last prescription bottle handy so you can tell them your dosage and how long it has been since you last took them.

You can also legally purchase hormones from other countries, where the sale is less regulated. This is dangerous for a number of reasons, but many people feel this is the only way. For one thing, any medicine you buy from out of the country may not be the same as what you purchased in the States. The dosage levels and manufacturing can vary widely, so make sure you know what you are getting.

If you aren’t comfortable with purchasing online or from another country-and I don’t blame you-it might be a good idea to pursue alternative options to legally purchase hormones. Some of the nation’s health stores provide either hormones in natural form or substances that serve the exact same purpose. While you should always research an alternative therapy carefully, these can be a cost-effective way to affect the changes you are seeking.

The best thing to do is to go to your local health store and talk to the pharmacist on duty. Explain your symptoms and what you have taken in the past, and request recommendations based on those facts. More often than not, he or she can direct you to a plethora of options, which you can then research on your own time.