Tips on How to Fight of Seasonal Affective Disorder

The summer is now officially over and the cold weather will soon be arriving. We have a few months of dark evenings and dark mornings in front of us and for many people this can lead to problems with motivation and even lead to depression. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a real problem and if you feel the blues coming on there are ways you can fight it off.

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Recognising the Symptoms

Before looking at solutions it’s worth taking a minute to learn about the symptoms. First of all it is a seasonal disorder so the feelings arise during winter months and wane when the spring and summer arrives.  The main symptoms of SAD include:

  • A decrease in your concentration levels
  • An increase of appetite
  • Weight gain
  • Mood swings and moodiness
  • Feeling tired
  • Social withdrawal
  • Anxiety

  • Some people think it’s just the winter blues but it is a clinical depression that is recognised and it is very dependent on the hormonal state of the individual. There is also research that shows SAD is more common in areas with a high latitude that experience intense and very long winters.

    Fighting off SAD and Feeling Happy

    As SAD can be difficult to recognise it is always worth visiting your doctor to ensure it’s not a different form of depression.  There are a range of treatments that have been shown to work, so don’t feel like you need to face a depressing winter, put these treatments into practice:

    Use light therapy to help you remain upbeat and positive. Light has been proven to reduce the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder. But not any light will do, you need to use light bulbs that imitate natural sun light. There are lamps, sun light boxes and head lamps that direct natural light into your line of vision. There are many alternatives with different levels of light available and it is worth consulting with your doctor or therapist before you buy one.

    Cognitive behavioural therapy is another effective treatment that is used for depression and anxiety disorders. It’s also a very effective therapy for SAD especially when combined with light therapy treatments.

    Get outside and stop sitting in doors. It is important to absorb natural light and get outside within two hours of waking up. Spending time outdoors is vital each day even if it’s cloudy.

    Walking is a form of exercise that will reduce the depression. This form of exercise is used to battle other forms of depression and it is just as effective for SAD. When you walk you release endorphins that help you to feel happier and more content.

    Eat complex carbohydrates that are also sometimes called bowls of sunshine. Complex carbohydrates can be very useful at helping you to maintain decent levels of serotonin. You do need to watch the amount you consume but a small portion will certainly benefit you. In addition to the carbs you should also eat more fruits and vegetables as they will help to give you energy.

    Finally you could try taking a suitable pill that regulates your mood. You can seek advice on what pills to take from your doctor.

    The author is a freelance writer. With a short history of depression he uses his personal experiences and research to provide information and advice to those who suffer with SAD and anxiety issues. His writing provides him with the perfect platform to help others and his work has been published on hundreds of websites and blogs.

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