SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder – What is SAD?

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What is SAD

Seasonal Affective Disorder – or SAD as it is commonly known affects up to 10% of the population. It is more common in women and generally effects people over 30.
SAD – can be known as winter depression; and in short it can be just that. With the lack of natural light throughout the autumn and winter our bodies and brains react in certain ways; some more extreme than others.

What are the symptoms of SAD?

– Fatigue
– Irritability
– Drop in energy level
– Avoidance of social situations
– Weight gain
– Change in appetite
– Difficulty concentrating
Extreme cases of SAD can effect peoples lives severely; causing the individual to not want to go out and socialise, almost want to hide away, sleep a lot, miss work and meals, become reclusive, irritable which can effect relationships.

Why and How does SAD Occur?

The lack of natural daylight means our serotonin levels decrease; meaning our general upbeat, awake and healthy feeling can decrease. With only 6-8 hours of daylight in the winter months these symptoms can become more apparent; also in areas more north such as Scotland who have less daylight hours there can be more sufferers within an area.

What can I do to help combat these symptoms?

Your GP may well suggest the use of a ‘light box’ which can be used as a screen, or glasses that emit the correct light rays. Sometimes cognitive therapy may be used or the use of anti-depressants.
However as with all conditions that effect our mood the use of some holistic/natural therapies may help.
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Therapies such as reflexology and massage offer benefits in lifting our mood, help balance our sleep pattern and regulate our appetite – all of which can be affected by SAD. For more information on how Holistic Therapies can help regulate hormones, mood and sleep please visit my website at www.mez-mer-eyez.com
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