Winter can be a difficult time to cope with symptoms of depression. It can be difficult to get out of bed and do anything productive; the cold weather and lack of sunlight can make it seem like there’s nothing to look forward to. If you’re feeling this way right now, don’t worry! There are many ways that you can cope with depression during the winter months.
Seasonal depression, also known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD), is a disorder that develops during the darker half of the year. It’s characterized by mood disturbances and changes in behavior, appetite, energy level, and sleep patterns. Much like other types of depression, it can be difficult to know how to cope with these yearly changes. In this blog post, we will go over how seasonal affective disorder develops and talk about some strategies for coping with depression so you can get prepare for the upcoming winter months.
How to Overcome SAD
Starting in the fall and sometimes lasting well into spring, depression can leech your energy, make it hard to pursue activities, and produce mood swings, often with symptoms of anxiety and sadness. Unlike other forms of depression, seasonal affective disorder and similar issues typically strike every year around the same time, causing mood swings and sadness through the darker seasons when the body isn’t receiving enough sunlight, exercise, and other essentials.
There are many ways to cope with seasonal depression during the winter months. An example of something you can try is to make sure that you’re getting enough sunlight each day. This will help your body produce more serotonin, which boosts your mood and helps fight off depressive episodes. You should also try to get outside as often as possible, because depression often worsens when people stay indoors. We’ll dive into each of these tips and more throughout this blog:
- Get plenty of sunlight. Seasonal depression tends to get worse when people stay indoors, so going outside and simply raising your face to the sunlight can help tremendously.
- Get outside. Going out into nature is a great way to boost your mood during the winter months. While it may be cold, connecting with nature can help bring a smile to anyone’s face.
- Eat well. Winter depression can often be triggered by changes in diet, so it’s important that you eat plenty of healthy meals. Try to reduce your intake of sugar and carbs, as they can have a depressive effect on mood.
- Move your body. Staying active is a great way to boost your mood during the winter. That doesn’t mean you have to hit the gym though; try some simple exercises, yoga, or even just a dance party with friends.
- Try light therapy. Using full-spectrum lighting has been proven to help seasonal depression because it mimics natural light. You may also want to consider looking into lightboxes that provide artificial light for those who are unable or unwilling to get outside during the coldest months.
- Know when to get help. If you are feeling like these fixes can’t help with your troubles, it may be time to reach out for some help. Ask for support from friends or family members when you can. Consider getting professional advice from a counselor or therapist who can recommend a plan. SAMHSA‘s national helpline 1-800-662-HELP (4357) is a free & confidential treatment referral and information service as well!
Get In Touch Today
If you or someone you know is struggling with seasonal depression, Babita Spinelli may be able to help. Whether you want to laser in on something specific or shift your overall, life, work, or relationships in a positive way, I customize sessions and draw from services I offer accordingly. In my work it’s a blend – I take everything I have absorbed, researched, learned, experienced, and applied for years and work with you to define and get the results you want – A life you can embrace fully, happily, and with authenticity. If you’re ready to get started, I’m ready to help. Schedule a consultation today by calling (347) 884-7316 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing from you!