Health and Science

What is Seasonal Depression?

Seasonal Depression is a serious disorder and should not be simply seen as the “winter blues” or “seasonal funk”. Seasonal Depression is the most common term used for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It affects 4%-6% of the United States population and is a type of depression that relates to changes in seasons1. While the most common type of SAD is found in the winter months, beginning in September/ October and ending by April/May, SAD can also occur in the reverse with the onset of summer1.

Wintertime SAD is most common in women and people who live in locations where winter daylight hours are very short. Some of the symptoms associated with wintertime SAD are grumpiness, moodiness, increased anxiety, loss of interest in usual activities, greater appetite, trouble concentrating and increased tiredness-even with proper amount of sleep. While scientists are unsure of the true cause of SAD they suspect it could be due wholesale jerseys to the lack of sunlight, in turn upsetting the biological clock which controls sleep-wake patterns and can cause problems with serotonin (a brain chemical that affects mood)2.

Summertime SAD is not as common as wintertime SAD but is found in about 10% of people with SAD in general. Summertime SAD is more prevalent in countries near the equator than wintertime SAD and is predicted to be caused by; longer days, increase in heat/ humidity, body image issues, financial worries and a disruption to normal wholesale jerseys eating and sleeping habits. With summer comes more time spent outdoors and greater downtime for both children and adults. Self- image issues could develop as activities begin to revolve around beaches and pools and financial worries could evolve due to expenses relating to vacations, summer camp, babysitters, etc. Symptoms of summertime SAD can be, loss of appetite, trouble sleeping, weight loss and anxiety2 and results in people withdrawing themselves from social activities/ the social scene in general.

To become diagnosed with SAD, an individual has to have been depressed during the same season for two years in a row but has gotten over the depression when the season changes. In addition, the individual has to carry symptoms associated with gondolatok SAD. As stated earlier, it is important not to ignore this depression because steps can be taken to keep mood and motivation steady throughout the year.

A treatment found to be effective is light therapy, however, it is important for a professional to prescribe it. There are two types; Bright Light Treatment and Dawn Simulation, which work by resetting the biological clock. Bright Light Treatment for involves placing a light box at a certain distance from yourself on a surface and and sitting in front of it while you do normal day sitting activities like reading, eating, August working or on a computer. Dawn Simulation requires a dim light to go on in the morning while you sleep which gets brighter overtime like a sunrise.

Blind Brook High School’s Project Success Counselor, wholesale jerseys Angela Marciano, shared with FOCUS, “SAD is more common than most people Ridge realize because people tend to brush it off as a new hectic schedule with school and sports starting, or simply stress. It is important to monitor the symptoms and see a professional for an accurate diagnosis to properly Drive treat this disorder.”

About the author

Joanna Goodman