Seasonal Affective Disorder…What is it?

As the nights draw in and the days get colder we may often start seeing changes in our moods alongside of this. From feeling upbeat in the blazing sunshine to feeling a bit wet and miserable in the winter, is it no wonder we start to feel a bit low in our spirits? The ‘Winter Blues’ is a term that is often thrown about but what if it goes beyond just this? What if your mood starts to negatively impact your life?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression which comes and goes with a seasonal pattern and 6% of the population are affected by it each year. More women than men are diagnosed with this condition with children and adolescents being vulnerable to it too. It has been found that people that are furthest away from the equator are at a higher risk of suffering from SAD due to the decreased exposure to the sunlight.

So what are the symptoms to look out for…?

  • a persistent low mood
  • a loss of pleasure or interest in normal everyday activities
  • irritability
  • feelings of despair, guilt and worthlessness
  • feeling lethargic and sleepy during the day
  • sleeping for longer than normal and finding it hard to get up in the morning
  • craving carbohydrates and gaining weight

If you have any of these symptoms and are finding it difficult to function and cope in your day to day life please seek out support whether this is from family, friends or your local G.P. as this condition can be successfuly managed. I will also be offering some tips in an upcoming blog about how to manage symptoms of SAD so I hope you find this helpful.

Nikki xo

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