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Over The Counter Depression

June 15, 2018 | Brandon Mills

The past couple of weeks have been somber as the public comes to terms with the suicidal deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. Kate was a talented designer and Anthony was a prolific writer, chef and TV personality [someone that I personally adored from a professional standpoint]. And it is a stark reminder of the many others that have taken their own lives, including Avicii’s suicide in Oman at the end of April.

Depressurizing Depression


I always take note of when there is a “major” suicide. For some reason, a notable passing always seems to remind me of my own ongoing battle with depression. As I move past the grief of the ones recently lost to depression-related suicides, I’m reminded (in the worst way) that I'm not alone in some of the darker feelings that have at times. But I always think, “why does someone have to die before we feel like it’s time to have these discussions?”


Depression is a nagging pressure that at times feels like there is no release. When we lose somebody that we believe has it all, we can instantly become prompted into a train of thought that it's not money or fame, success or admiration, that becomes the magic bullet to living a life without depression. As depression moves from the abnormal to the main stream, I'm forced to acknowledge that there are much deeper reasons that we need to explore as a society. We have to ask, “why has depression and its ultimate decider (suicide) become epidemics with sky rocketing statistics?” Depression has no remorse and it can send any one of us plummeting away from a positive place of self-worth.


With that said, let’s take a look into a new study reviewed by the New York Times, recently released by the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA), that explores the relationship between depression and the drugs we’re taking.


An Ocean of Pills


In North America, at least one-third of the population is currently taking a prescription drug that includes the side effect of causing depression. This blows my mind… and whatever I'd have to take in order to get my mind back would probably be a drug that would cause me even more depression than I started with.


The JAMA study highlighted over 200 drugs, some of which are very common—from antacids to ibuprofen, sprinkle in some Prilosec, beta blockers (for high blood pressure), birth control pills, and anticonvulsants—and you’ve got a significant range of the population covered. Top that off with a staggering number of over-the-counter medications that come with side effect of depression included. After which, we’re left with the disturbing realization that no demographic is safe from the onslaught of depression because the amount of people at risk (and being effected) is oceanically vast.


You can read more about those 200 drugs here.


I Need Some Light Out of This Tunnel


Here at Remedy Hike, it may seem at times that we are leading with a seemingly bleak picture, but our goal is always to provide hope and (if possible) solutions. One of the major reasons we can start to shine some light down this dark hole is through increased awareness and communication. Gladly, we can see at least some momentum gaining around the issue.


If you weren’t already aware, June is Men's Health Month. And the fact remains that two out of three suicides are men. There may be a number of reasons why, but men are typically less likely to talk about their feelings. When that window of deep depression pulls back its curtains, men are also less likely to have someone who knows the depth of their despair—thus are more likely to have the opportunity to take their own lives. In the spirit of furthering the conversation on all aspects of men’s health, check out for your toolkit—and get the men in your life talking! Whether you want to throw your own event, post a simple tweet, write a blog, drop a thought on Facebook or just learn more about how to support the initiative, the toolkit has you covered… and as always so do we!


Our mission is to build community through authentic conversation. So, we ask you to go ahead and make mental health a priority. Chances are it may also be affecting someone close to you. Then stay tuned to our Workshops page, where you can find weekly exposure to the remedies that ease your mind and can offer that much needed support for ourselves, our loved ones and our icons. Together we can prevent tragedy with tenacity!


Ps. Don’t forget to call/text/hug your dad this weekend.




The United States alone has seen a 25% rise in the number of suicides since 1999.

We will always be disappointed that a group of squid isn't called a squad.


Remedy Hike is on a mission to change the way we think about our health. We hike for change. Because we see Health Outside the Ordinary.



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