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Help For Seasonal Depression

If you’re like me there is a great deal of stress and anxiety surrounding the holiday season.  And when I say holiday season, for me, it begins sometime in the middle of October and lasts until sometime in March.  Although this is something I have dealt with since my early 20’s, it is especially true for me now that I am an adult with a family of my own.  On a typical day taking care of yourself and on top of that work, spouse, family can make it challenging to enjoy what is suppose to be “the most wonderful time of the year”.

Help For Seasonal Depression

Seasonal depression can either begin slowly as a general feeling of being overwhelmed, and build into a state of depression.  Or it can potentially sneak up on you and hit you like a ton of bricks on a random afternoon of Christmas shopping.  Depression can look and feel differently for everyone.  The important part is that you don’t ignore it.  Instead, seek out a friend or a counselor so that you can begin working through it.

Although seasonal depression can just be falling into a bit of an emotional funk due to dark days and oftentimes less outside social interaction, there are also scientific explanations behind seasonal depression and what could be causing it.  Seasonal depression is also known as seasonal affective disorder, or SAD.  Along with winter comes shorter days, and longer nights and of course colder weather.  But, that lack of sunlight plays a factor in the symptoms of SAD as well as the distance you are from the equator.  This reduced level of sunlight can affect your serotonin, which is a chemical in the brain that impacts your mood.  The lower the levels of serotonin, the higher you are at risk for mood related symptoms such as depression.

Some symptoms of SAD are very similar to depression.  The main difference between general depression and SAD is that SAD symptoms typically present themselves in the fall and winter months.  Then return to normal levels following the winter months going into spring and summer.

Symptoms include:

  1.       Depressed mood nearly every day
  2.       Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
  3.       Unintentional weight loss or loss of appetite every day
  4.       Sleeping too much or not at all
  5.       Delayed or slow to react
  6.       Loss of energy daily
  7.       Feelings of worthlessness
  8.       Inappropriate guilt
  9.       Difficulty concentrating
  10. Suicidal ideation

 

If you have any of  the above or suffer from other symptoms not listed there are things you can do at home.  Here are some solutions.

seasonal depression

If you have found this helpful and want more help then we are here for you.  At New Vision Counseling and Consulting we have a team of compassionate therapists who will create a safe and welcoming environment for you to heal.  If you are tired of struggling alone and want to make progress that lasts then contact us at (405) 921-7776.

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Oklahoma City, OK 73120

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