Seasonal Affective Disorder or “SAD”
Seasonal Affective Disorder or “SAD” is a common type of depression that affects some people during the change of seasons when there is less or no sunlight. This is a condition that’s really not understood by doctors, but it’s thought to be related to the amounts of melatonin and serotonin in your body. It’s believed that a chemical imbalance occurs which is caused by a lack of sunlight. This is most common in the months of September through April. There are some things that can be helpful to individuals that suffer from this condition. Below are a few things that you can do.
Exercise has been proven to work for many people. Really get out there and working up a sweat. Make certain to stretch your entire body very well before and after you exercise. This will reduce soreness and also reduce your risk of injury.
Increase the light. Whether it’s outside for physical activity or turning lights on inside the house, get yourself into the light. Sitting next to a bright lamp, especially a full-spectrum light bulb, will help trigger chemicals in your body to lift your mood. Open the blinds and let light into the house (unless it’s dreary outside). Sit in the sunshine streaming through the window.
As a final resort you may want to try antidepressant medication. There is nothing wrong with needing a little help from time to time. Talk with your doctor and you will realize you are not alone in this.
Although this type of depression can be difficult to deal with, it can be manageable with the proper care and activities. Find a new hobby, take a class or volunteer. Anything that makes you feel happy will help lift you out of the dreary mood and get you back on track. The sun will shine again.