Seasonal affective disorder is regarded as a type of depression which occurs in some people after daylight saving time. According to Jeff Janata, a psychiatry professor and psychology director at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, the common SAD symptoms include lack of interest in daily activities, excessive sleeping, lack of sleep, and irritation among others.
Those suffering from this condition experience these symptoms starting from late October until the early spring. Seasonal affective disorder is mainly caused by the lower level of sunlight during the fall and winter, especially in countries which are quite far from the Equator.
The hormones related to mood and sleep timing are serotonin and melatonin. Both of them are affected in people with SAD. Janata further adds that the symptoms occur in the first few weeks after daylight saving time.
Scientists label this condition as a neurovegetative form of depression. It is also interesting that some of these changes occur in animals which hibernate, and because humans do not follow the same vegetative patterns, they experience the SAD symptoms.
Experts from the National Institutes of Health underline that the seasonal affective disorder manifests during the winter through a broad array of other symptoms such as weight gain, social withdrawal, carbohydrates craving, weight gain, overeating, hypersomnia, and a lack of energy.
That is why specialists advise people with SAD to spend more time outdoors to be exposed more to sunlight. By doing this every morning, you will most likely feel better because the lack of sunlight will no longer be a problem.
Also, people should rely on dietary supplements such as vitamin D, which is a reliable asset against the lack of focus and fatigue. In other words, you will cope better with the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder.
Try to be more socially active, because isolation makes SAD patients feel more depressed. By surrounding yourself with people and spending more time outdoors, you will forget about your lack of interest in daily activities.
Patients should exercise more as well. An average of 20 minutes of aerobics every day will significantly reduce stress levels. Make sure you have a regular sleep schedule. The body produces melatonin during the first hours of sleep, so timing is the key to deal with seasonal affective disorder.
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