Important Message from The Joint Chiropractic regarding COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) - Read More

Winter Blues? Or is it More Sinister?

By Krista Elliott

We all have a favorite season. Some of us love the heat of summer, while others of us relish the brisk crispness of fall or the tender promise of spring. I even know a few weirdos who like snowy, cold winters the best.

And of course, if we have a favorite season, then we likely have a least favorite season as well; the time of year when we’re uncomfortable and cross, and are counting the days until the season changes.

But what if you don’t just have “the winter (or summertime) blues”? What if you have SAD?

Why So SAD?

SAD is the impressively apt acronym for seasonal affective disorder. Beyond being in a “funk”, SAD is actually a form of depression, related to the changes in seasons. In most cases, the symptoms start in the fall and increase in severity through the winter months, going away when spring arrives.

What are the Symptoms of SAD?

Seasonal affective disorder is a type of depression, so its symptoms are the same in many ways:

  • Feelings of hopelessness or worthlessness
  • Low energy levels
  • Little to no interest in previously enjoyable activities or interests
  • Changes in your sleep (insomnia, or wanting to sleep all the time)
  • Changes in your appetite
  • Inability to concentrate, decreased memory skills, and increased irritability and sensitivity
  • Thoughts of suicide or decreased will to live

 What Causes SAD?

There are a few factors that can contribute to SAD, although we still don’t know the precise cause. It’s thought that the decrease in sunlight may mess with your body’s circadian rhythms and serotonin levels, while the change in season (and the time change) can wreak havoc on your melatonin levels and resultant sleep patterns. Young people who already have depression, or a family history of depression, are at particular risk.

How to Manage It

As is typical with any mental condition, there is no cure, but seasonal affective disorder can be managed. Light therapy, using a special phototherapy box that you sit in front of for a certain amount of time each day, is an effective treatment in many cases of SAD.

Other treatment options include antidepressants, psychotherapy, spending more time outside (especially within two hours of waking up in the morning), and making adjustments to your home to allow more natural light in.

Seasonal affective disorder is a mental health condition to take seriously, so don't think that you should just be able to tough it out or shake it off. By seeking help and treatment, you can be well on your way to turning your SAD winters into happier ones. 

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic.

Download your offer today and save!

$29 New Patient Special, Consultation | Exam | Adjustment

Offer valued at $45. Valid for new patients only. See clinic for chiropractor(s)' name and license info. Clinics managed and/or owned by franchisee or Prof. Corps. Restrictions may apply to Medicare eligible patients. Individual results may vary.