Neurotransmitters are chemicals that relay signals between nerve cells called neurons. Serious health problems, including depression, anxiety and insomnia can occur when levels of neurotransmitters are too high or too low.
Neurotransmitter testing is used to detect imbalances in brain and body chemistry. Basing a treatment on symptoms alone (traditional medicine) does not provide enough information to understand the underlying cause of the symptoms. The person who describes “feeling depressed” leaves the office with at least one or more, prescriptions for antidepressants without any objective evidence of what is causing their symptoms.
New testing is now available to evaluate neurotransmitter imbalances using a urine or blood sample. This provides a baseline assessment of amino acids and other missing nutrient levels to help determine the root causes for many diseases and illnesses.
This analysis can provide information on brain neurotransmitter deficiencies or overloads, as well as detect hormonal imbalances and missing co-factors which influence neurotransmitter production. By getting a neurotransmitter assay, we can identify which neurotransmitter is out of balance and plan an individualized treatment plan.
A neurotransmitter assessment is important for those who want to discontinue long-standing anti-depressant medication. Call today to find out more information about this important service provided at Tenpenny Integrative Medical Center – 440-239-3438.
The Role of Neurotransmitters in a Good Night’s Sleep
Neurotransmitters generally fall into excitatory (energizing, stimulating) and inhibitory (calming, relaxing, slowing down).
The inability to sleep is called insomnia. This disorder is characterized by problems falling asleep or difficulties remaining asleep during the night. While it is normal to wake up 3-4 times per night, not falling back to sleep in a reasonable period of time can cause a myriad of problems. In a 2005 survey conducted by The National Sleep Foundation, 61% of respondents reported that sleepiness on the job interferes with the amount of work that they were able to do during the day. Over 60% admitted driving while drowsy and 37% had dozed off while driving.
Sleep disorders are among the most common neurotransmitter-related conditions. Common central nervous system neurotransmitters, serotonin and norepinephrine appear to be involved in the appearance of sleep disorders. Drug-based approaches to sleep problems use chemicals to imitate or redistribute existing neurotransmitters in the brain. Rather than using drugs, neurotransmitter function can be supported and restored with nutrient programs and foods that restore a normal balance to the biochemistry of the brain.
Sleep imbalances can result in an imbalance between these transmitters and hormones. Common central nervous system neurotransmitters, serotonin and norepinephrine appear to be related to sleep disorders. A urine and saliva test can identify the problems and quickly lead to a solution. This presentation gives an overview of the testing and therapeutic regimen for improvement.