Seasonal Affective Disorder
This is a very real issue that affects many people during the winter months, especially those who live in regions that do not get much exposure to sunlight. For these people affected, the winter months can seem endless and feel as though spring is an eternity away.
A large contributing factor for those affected with Seasonal Affective Disorder (or SAD) is that there is an imbalance in the amount of melatonin their bodies produce. This imbalance contributes to the person feeling tired, lacking motivation, and losing interest in many aspects of their lives, which in turn can affect relationships.
SAD is a real disorder and should be treated as such. Friends and loved ones of sufferers of SAD often lose patience with them and wish for them to get over it. It's not so easy, as depression is as real as physical pain. Persons affected by this disorder should be treated with patience and understanding.
There are treatment options that can be of help to those suffering from SAD, aside from moving to an area prone to more sunlight. Exposure to indoor lighting that is similar to natural sunlight (light therapy) has been reported to help. Anti-depressants and herbal remedies can be used to combat feelings of depression. Psychotherapy can also help as a support mechanism for those affected.
If you or a family member may be struggling with SAD, know that there is support available.
If we can be of assistance in offering therapy or any supportive guidance, please do not hesitate to contact our office for assistance.