Cold weather and limited daylight hours can bring on feelings of sadness and depression known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
While you may be tempted to write it off as the “winter blues,” feelings of depression should not be ignored. Talk to your doctor if you’re feeling any of these symptoms this season.
- Lower-than-normal energy
- Frequent feelings of depression or thoughts of suicide
- Reduced interest in favorite activities
- Trouble sleeping
- Changes in appetite or weight
- Feeling sluggish or agitated
In addition to talking to your doctor, you can try these tips to help you feel like yourself again.
Stay active: Even getting out for a walk during the day can get your blood pumping and improve your mood.
Be social: Tempting as it is to cozy up indoors alone, the benefits of getting out to socialize with friends and family cannot be underestimated. Talking and laughing will make winter seem less dreary.
Eat right: Healthy eating will not only help you maintain your weight, it will also boost your mood and give you more energy. Be sure to balance your winter carb cravings with lots of colorful fruits and vegetables.
Lighten up: Limited daylight is definitely tied to SAD, so get outside as much as possible during the middle of the day, or invest in a light therapy lamp to help boost your mood.
Keep warm: Feeling cold may dampen your mood, so drink hot beverages, wear layers and keep the thermostat between 64-70 degrees.