Seasonal Affective Disorder(SAD): Talk To Us Because Winter Is Coming!
Is It Just Winter Blues or Seasonal Depression? Let’s find out!
Seasonal depression or Seasonal Affective Disorder(SAD) is one type of depression that comes up with the change in seasons. Seasonal depression repeats itself at almost the same time of the year. Usually, winter months are most likely to bring sudden mood changes; other seasons like spring and summer also cause seasonal depression symptoms.
Quick Facts Of Seasonal Depression
- Women are four times more prone to seasonal depression.
- Young adults ranging between 18-30 are more susceptible to SAD.
- The rate of SAD highly depends on the area of your living. For example, people living near beaches would not have much of winter depression symptoms, but people near Arctic regions would have.
Winter Blues v/s Seasonal Depression
- Winter blues are a mild mood disorder and affect 10-20% of people whereas seasonal depression(winters) affects 1-2% of the population.
- Seasonal depression is a little complicated and often found in people who live beyond tropics whereas winter blues are more common in areas with mild winters or within the tropical zone.
- Winter blues are common as the weather becomes gloomy, dark and cold, and your body becomes lethargic whereas seasonal depression can show stressed signs and can appear in any season change.
Symptoms Of Seasonal Depression
Do not ignore these depression symptoms as this can be treated easily.
- Oversleeping or Difficulty in sleeping: Usually, people begin to sleep more than usual and it sometimes exceeds 14-16 hours a day. Some of them have problems is sleeping during the time period and they do not fall asleep until the favorable time of the day arrives.
- Overeating: People facing seasonal affective disorder begin to consume more food than usual. In some cases, the hunger for starchy and sugary food also arises.
- Sadness: During the season change, persistent sadness appears for no specific reason which in turn drops down the mood, and the person can’t focus on anything properly.
- Constant Tiredness: Neither too much of work nor anything hefty is done, yet the body remains tired for constant hours. The person is not able to initiate things and fatigue carries all over the body.
- Hopelessness: A person becomes highly hopeless for his future or even feel worthlessness of self.
- Avoiding Activities: As the person gets irritable and gets hopeless, he begins avoiding any activity that was enjoyed earlier.
- Being Stressed: People facing seasonal depression do not stay calm and feel stressed. There is no particular reason but brooding nature and stress surround them.
- Consuming Drugs And Alcohol: To comfort themselves through this tough phase, a person may begin to consume drugs and alcohol exceeding the limits. This can turn into serious conditions.
- Unexplained Pain: The body may begin to ache anywhere without a major reason supporting it. Sudden pain in the stomach or head is just not explainable and twists the mood completely.
- Suicidal Thoughts: In extreme cases of seasonal affective disorder, a person thinks of harming himself. This situation can totally be avoided if early signs of seasonal depression are not ignored. TALK TO US AND LET’S FIGHT DEPRESSION TOGETHER!
Symptoms of SAD In Summer
- Insomnia or sleep troubles
- Appetite changes or sudden weight loss
- Constant anxiety
Causes Of Seasonal Depression
Though the exact reasons for the seasonal affective disorder are unknown, some factors include:
- Unmatched Circadian Rhythm: The decreased level of sunlight in winters change the body rhythm and a person may feel depressed with the onset of winters.
- Reduced Serotonin Level: Serotonin is a brain chemical that controls the mood of a person. When it drops down due to reduced sunlight, depression can pop-up.
- Change In Melatonin Level: Sleep pattern and mood can disrupt like anything when the melatonin level is not balanced in the human body.
Seasonal Depression Treatment
Dealing with seasonal depression begins at home. Follow these evidence-based methods below and throw away seasonal depression.
1. Get Sunlight
If you can reach to sunshine after taking a short walk to the nearby garden, DO THAT! Sunlight provides positive energy and adequate Vitamin D that activates the mind and body for further activities. Take your lunch in sunlight or go out for a short walk after lunch and keep consuming sunlight. This ultimately increases serotonin levels in the body as well.
2. Go For Light Therapy
Not every geographic location gets enough natural sunlight. For the same, light therapy can be taken, which is the replica of natural light only. Melatonin levels can be balanced using this therapy in which a prescribed amount has to be consumed. Make sure that this light therapy is being taken under the guidance of a clinician.
3. Push Yourself
Meet up with your friends or relatives to change your surroundings. Or rather take your kids out for shopping, snowboarding, ice skating, etc. Divert yourself from the regular thoughts and push yourself to enjoy the season change.
We have prepared a list of apps that help in managing stress through various methods like meditation, breathe exercises, yoga, etc. to keep your whole day going smoothly.
Exercise is indeed the best way to lower down the stress level. Those who work out for 3 days a week have strong physical and mental health. If winters are pretty intense, try yoga, aerobics or HIIT inside your home only. Try out Renee Amberg’s mindful exercises if you are feeling lethargic to get up.
Also check: Exercises to beat depression
6. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
It has been proven clinically that this therapy is certain in curing the seasonal depression symptoms. For the same, you need to see an expert nearby and indulge in the session for effective treatment. Visit today!
7. Speak With Us
We are just a mail away! or Drop us a comment in the comment section below and we will get back to you with our expert’s advice or on-call discussion. Let seasonal affective disorder swish away.
With that, take care of yourself and eat healthy food. Stay connected to your social circle and we promise to post supportive blogs in the meantime.