Get Ahead of Your Seasonal Depression this Year
If you live in a colder climate, it can be challenging to deal with a lack of sunlight and being stuck inside due to frigid temperatures during winter. It is for these reasons many people experience what is called “the winter blues.”
But seasonal depression is more than this. Also known as Seasonal Affective Disorder – or SAD – seasonal depression results in fatigue, a loss of interest in socializing and activities, weight gain, and more. Symptoms usually begin to present in the fall and last until the sunnier, warmer days of spring.
If you suffer from seasonal depression, there are things you can do to manage it:
Use a LightBox
When winter comes, the light goes. It gets darker earlier, and we can’t spend as much time in the sun. A light therapy box can help mimic the benefits of exposure to sunlight. It is best to start using it at the beginning of fall, before your SAD symptoms even have a chance to take hold.
Eat a Proper Diet
When it’s cold and nasty out, and we’re feeling sad and depressed, most of us will reach for those comfort foods laden with processed sugars and trans fats. But these foods will usually make us feel even more tired and depressed. Eating unhealthy foods can lead to undesired weight gain, and feeling sluggish, which can increase feelings of depression. Best to stick to a diet consisting of whole foods rich in healthy fats and carbs, some quality protein, and vitamins and minerals.
People with seasonal depression tend to isolate themselves during the winter months, which can exacerbate the depression. So do your best to stay involved with your social circle. Friends can be a great support during this challenging time.
Consider Speaking to a Therapist
You may also want to speak with a professional about your feelings. A therapist can offer tools and advice to help you navigate your feelings. If you’d like more information about how counseling can help with seasonal depression, please give my office a call!