The Winter Blues are a Real Thing

Photo by Nic Y-C on Unsplash

Colder climes and shorter days mean more time snuggled in bed, watching Netflix. After all, who wants to go out when temperatures hit below zero and even the sun goes to sleep at 5PM?! Staying home may seem like the natural thing to do when winter arrives, but if you’re feeling more lethargic than usual, it could be a sign of something more. 

There is a real condition that exists called Season Affective Disorder (SAD). Essentially, it is a form of depression that is triggered by a decrease in sunshine as bright light tends to stimulate the release of the feel-good hormone serotonin. Less sunshine also means less vitamin D which has also been linked to depression. 

Things to look out for with SAD include constantly feeling tired and the need to hibernate, avoiding social interactions, overeating and craving carbs, and not being able to keep up with your regular routine. 

If you’ve been experiencing these symptoms, there are some things you can do to tide you over till summer.

Check Your Sunshine Vitamin

Consider getting your vitamin D levels checked through a blood test. If they are low, supplements can help boost them, along with adding vitamin D-rich foods to your diet. 

See the Light

Ever heard of light therapy? It involves sitting under a therapy lamp for a few minutes every morning to make up for the lack of sunlight. 

Talk to Someone

There is no reason to be ashamed for seeking help with mental health. You wouldn’t think twice about going for a consistent cough. If the symptoms of depression persist for more than 2 weeks, talk to a mental health professional.