Most of us feel a little bit down when winter darkness sets in, and elevated when the summer sun returns. These seasonal mood swings are severe enough to make life hard to bear and affect our daily activities. Mood swings happen to everyone from time to time, but it is highly important to get a consistent sleep routine and get the most out of this great season.
In fact these mood changes might be a sign of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). In most cases, SAD symptoms start in the late fall or early winter and go away during the spring and summer; this is known as winter-pattern SAD or winter depression. Having low energy, problems with sleep, losing interest in activities once enjoyed and gaining weight are some of the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
People with Seasonal Affective Disorder feel sleepy during the day and usually sleep longer at night. Bad news is that napping does not provide them with relief from feeling sleepy.
Mindset Matters in Beating SAD
Sometimes we wonder how people living in regions with long, dark winters are able to maintain such a high level of well-being. Studies show that we should be having an attitude of celebration towards winter, and a mindset that winter is something to be enjoyed rather than endured. As such, being active and spending time outdoors, both are well-known mood boosters.
Except for the light therapy, self-care will also help while fighting SAD. Having regular exercises, eating energy-boosting foods, going outdoors and having social interactions may help with reducing Seasonal Affective Disorder symptoms. So, get enough sleep and stay active!