Taking Desperate Measures for Treating Severe Depression in Preppers


In this post we’ll discuss how to tell if a person is suffering from clinical depression, or if they’re just sad. Then we’ll review some controversial treatments you need to know about. These are desperate measures for when the reality of the world’s end sinks in.


Not only does depression impair your ability to function, but it also effects those around you. People are going to be sad at the world’s end. But sadness and depression are different entities, and best understood in the following way:

Sadness vs. Depression

Sadness is a normal reaction to life when things are going poorly. It can last as long as the conditions causing it worsen. Like grief, it should only last about a year, after which most people have acclimated. If it doesn’t, then sadness and grief can turn into depression.

Treating Depression

Depression can be thought of as an unhealthy emotional reaction to life. One that occurs even when things are going well. Treating depression as an emergency is currently limited to hospital admissions if the person is suicidal, and Prozac like drugs and psychotherapy if they’re stable. In everyday life, this is the best treatment, and should be pursued at all costs to ensure the persons safety. But with the types of situations we’re talking about none of them will be available.

So what do you do if a person in your group is incapacitated by grief or depression?

(Remember that like all advice in these posts, it’s only to be used if professional medical care is not, and will not be available.)


Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), like Prozac and Zoloft, are much safer to take and have fewer side effects than their predecessors. But they take an awfully long time to start working. Two to six weeks is the norm, and even after that the dose often needs to be increased. Clearly, this is not going to be a quick fix in emergent situations.

Ritalin for Depression

In the olden days, psychiatrists would sometimes give Ritalin to people with major depression. A week or two supply would elevate their mood until the medications of the day, like lithium, started to take effect. And while it can be dangerous, “speed” may be a short term fix for people who have given up. Preppers that would probably lay down die otherwise.

But what about addiction? One might see that a perpetual problem could result in a situation like this. Escapes in times of horrific disasters are slam dunks for addictions taking foothold. The saving grace here is that all drugs are going to be hard to find. So the pills you do get, are likely to be the only ones you will see for years. That in itself limits potential problems. This brings us to the next controversial emergency treatment… Ketamine.


Ketamine for Depression

Believe it or not, this drug is currently undergoing clinical trials. Ketamine is a club drug. The kids call it “Vitamin K” or “Special K” or Lord knows what. Ketamine seems to reverse profound depression within 30 minutes of taking it, potentially making it an excellent choice for emergency treatment.

Psychiatric Times (New Claims and Findings for Ketamine in Severe Depression January 17, 2013 | By Arline Kaplan

Take Home Message:  Depression can be every bit as disabling to a prepper as a physical injury.  Planning for it is essential, and must be done long before you see zombies in your backyard! 

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