DO YOU HAVE SAD?: SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER?
Authored By Areeba Khalid
People with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) experience drastic mood swings. Symptoms of this disorder are very similar to that of depression. Changes in appetite, feeling upset and gloomy throughout the day, staying in bed all day, and not wanting to leave the room. Another common symptom involves those with SAD thinking they are worthless or insufficient; in the worst case scenario, suicide becomes a longing and they start spending time alone.
These symptoms are not something we can just shrug off, call it winter blues and stay in bed all season. We need to dig a little deeper and find ways to overcome these gloomy, dull days. However, the important question: why does one go through SAD?
According to research, some experience Seasonal Affective Disorder because of the changes in season from summer to fall to winter. The lack of exposure to sunlight during these months hinders the chemicals in the body resulting in mood changes and feelings of depression. Alongside this, lack of sunlight also results in a drop in the serotonin level further making one feel helpless and depressed. The changes in season also affect our melatonin level, the culprit of disrupting our sleep schedules!
But how do we cure this depression once we become a target of it? How do we protect ourselves from these murky days and enjoy winters the right way?
Winter is all about enjoying the cold weather with friends and family, hot chocolate, bonfires, and roasted marshmallows. However, during this phase of winter depression, one often starts overeating and sleeping all day. Spending all the day indoors and alone, we become less interested in activities we were once fond of and run away from any means of social interaction possible. To change this dull winter routine we are all living in, we got some ti[ps and pointers that could come in handy! One should make a planner for the day ahead - this way when you wake up, you will feel more organized; try to keep your day fun and occupied. Make plans to hang out with friends and have a good laugh while spilling all the tea (or sipping). Find some outdoor activities you enjoy.
The dawn and dusk hours during the winter season are just jaw-dropping! The shades of pink, orange, and blue all blending are just a mesmerizing sight to watch. If nothing, try sitting outside during this time and appreciate the beauty of nature. It helps get rid of the fatigue and lonely feeling.
Another way to help cure winter depression is through antidepressants and phototherapy. If the low moods get the best of you and you feel worthless and suicidal, it is better if you visit a therapist and talk out your emotion
Let's help each other recover from this Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and build snowmen this winter!