Are you a person who loves to be outside gardening, doing home improvements,
just enjoying the sunshine and warm weather? Do you find that when the temperatures
start to drop and the days get shorter that you suddenly have less energy and
are more apt to be irritable to those around you?
If you seem to feel depressed around wintertime each year, you may be afflicted
with what is known as Seasonal Affective Disorder. This mood disorder frequently
occurs among sufferers in the wintertime, although it may also be demonstrated
in summer (much less often). Moreover, seasonal affective disorder is very common
among residents of northern climates such as Canada, where winter can be extensive.
There are several symptoms that indicate seasonal affective disorder, a couple
of which we mentioned above. Some others include sleeping more often than is
usual, a craving for unhealthy foods (sweets and high carb treats),
and feelings of depression.
The good news about seasonal affective disorder is that although the symptoms
can be debilitating and hard on sufferers and their families, treatment is usually
straightforward. The main triggers are the conditions that accompany the changing
of seasons. People who love sunshine become depressed with shorter days, and
of course active outdoors types are limited in wintertime. It is not hard to
imagine that a nice retreat to Mexico would add enough sunshine to maybe do the trick.
To mitigate some of the more severe symptoms of seasonal affective disorder,
many people use specially designed lamps, which provide more intense illumination
than standard bulbs. These lamps are known as light boxes or sun lamps. The
afflicted individual sits close to the box with eyes open though not fixed on
the light itself. This is usually done in the morning for 30 to 60 minutes,
and most patients see a noticeable improvement. If the patient is still suffering
despite their best efforts there are home remedies you might try.
Although seasonal affective disorder is serious, it is relatively easy to treat.
Other treatments include sleep therapy and other forms of cognitive behavioural
therapy, and all are worth checking out if you suffer from this mood disorder.
A sufferer may also benefit by spending some relaxation time in a spa. Take
stress away by enjoying a massage or rejuvenate yourself with a relaxing
At this time the Canadian government is allocating funds to hopefully find more treatments and increase public awareness. Go to the Mayo Clinic to read more on S.A.D.