The time went back, but don't get S.A.D. Here's how to beat the dark days ahead.
Every year so many people are irritated when the time falls back but around 10 million Americans actually get S.A.D. As the days get shorter and light turns into darkness faster, it is easy to fall into sort of a depressed state even though this is supposed to be the happiest time of year.
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that's related to changes in seasons. S.A.D begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you're like most people with S.A.D, your symptoms start in the fall around the time change and continue into the winter months. This can sap your energy and make you feel moody.
Some Symptoms of S.A.D.
In most cases those with S.A.D. experience their symptoms in the fall and winter months, but there are those who experience them during the spring and summer. Symptoms may start out mild and become more severe as the season progresses. They may include ...
- feeling depressed most of the day, every day
- low energy
- feeling sluggish or agitated
- losing interest in activities you enjoy
- feeling hopeless or anxious
- having trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
Many times the symptoms of winter S.A.D. are over eating, oversleeping, feeling tired or sluggish, not feeling like yourself, not enjoying family activities, etc.
Some Causes May Be
So many people develop S.A.D., even to a mild level, that it is safe to say doctors may know the causes. One is when time is changed, our biological clocks are thrown off. When we see it is dark at 5:30 pm, our internal clocks think it is time to sleep.
Another cause may be a drop in Serotonin levels in our bodies. Serotonin is a brain chemical that affect our mood and energy levels. We receive it from the sun so when there is a decrease in sunlight, our levels run low causing depression in many cases.
Changes in Melatonin levels can also cause S.A.D. Our bodies begin to produce the sleep chemical when our brains see it is dark out. And we all know an increase/change in Melatonin can cause tiredness and sluggishness.
There are risk factors that make some more prone to S.A.D. than others. They are a family history of the disorder or if someone is already bipolar or depressed the time change can affect them more.
What to do about S.A.D.
Luckily there are some treatments. Exercise is a great way to boost the happy hormone and put the sluggish feeling at bay. "One of the best and most effective treatments though is light therapy." It is light our body misses during the cold, winter months so when we add light therapy into our weekly routine, the symptoms tend to decrease and even stay away.
Infrared light therapy and an infrared sauna is one of the best ways to stay feeling like yourself this winter season. Remember here at the Oasis we provide our community with both! We will be talking about light therapy all season long to remind you that when you need a little boost in happiness, the infrared room and sauna are here for you.
Infrared light comes originally from the sun and thanks to technology, we are now able to harness it with the use of infrared lamps. These lamps provide us with the feeling of time in the sun which brightens our mood and soothes our souls.
We know that more than 10 million people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder and we are thankful to be able to give those people a way to make themselves happier and healthier; after all that is our calling here at The Salt Oasis Kingsport.
Learn more about our Infrared Light Therapy and our Infrared Sauna on our "Services" tab. This treatment may be just what you are looking for.