Ever heard of SAD? Want to know the answer to the question “What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?” and learn what you can do about it?
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a kind of stress linked to shifts in seasons that typically start and stop at the same period yearly. Usually, symptoms of SAD begin in the fall and last until wintertime, making you feel unhappy. Signs of SAD in the early summer or spring are rare.
As the cold season draws near, you may need to learn more about it. So here are five things you need to know about SAD.
1. What Is Seasonal Affective Disorder?
Seasonal affective disorder is a kind of depression that happens in a seasonal pattern. It usually happens as daylight time lessens, and your body alters the way it creates chemicals. Both melatonin and serotonin levels change.
SAD is widespread, affecting countless people throughout the country. There are about 10 million Americans that experience seasonal affective disorder yearly. If you have SAD, you might feel signs of severe mood switch in the winter.
2. Indications of SAD
In general, the symptoms of SAD arise through early winter or late fall and at the end of spring and summer. However, at times, people with the reverse pattern have signs that occur in spring or summer. In either situation, symptoms can begin moderately and get more rigid as the season advances.
Symptoms of SAD include the following:
- Feeling of depression
- Having no interest in activities that you once liked
- Low energy
- Difficulty sleeping or oversleeping
- Loss of appetite or weight gain
- Feeling lazy or upset
- Trouble focusing
- Feeling lost, useless, or guilty
- Having constant thoughts of suicide or death
Most may feel these signs and symptoms of winter blues, which is typically caused by a lack of sunlight. However, for any shifts in mood or sleep patterns, you must consult your doctor.
3. Causes of SAD
The lack of research and studies makes it hard to understand what causes seasonal affective disorder. However, many see the involvement of the circadian rhythm. For example, the lowered level of daylight in winter and fall might disrupt your body clock, making you experience SAD.
Also, a decline in serotonin, a neurotransmitter that induces mood, may occur with SAD. For example, decreased sunlight can cause a decrease in serotonin that might cause depression.
Moreover, the seasonal change can disrupt melatonin levels, which affect mood and sleep patterns.
4. Treatment Remedy
SAD treatment options may include phototherapy, medications, and talk therapy. Although symptoms will get better as the season change, they can improve faster with treatment.
Talk therapy and antidepressant can generally help with SAD treatment. Also, daily exercise and staying connected with family and friends can further help.
Check out Wholistic Matters to learn about natural treatment options.
5. Preventive Measure of SAD
Those with excellent stress management abilities are usually less affected. Try to spend a bit more time in the sunlight and do routine exercises to fight the emotional symptoms of SAD.
Make sure to consult your doctor and look for symptoms to prevent it from happening or getting worse.
Get to Know More About SAD
Seasonal affective disorder is a serious and common condition. If you think you’re undergoing early symptoms of SAD, talk to your doctor. An early understanding of what is seasonal affective disorder helps you deal with it.
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