How to Treat Seasonal Affective Disorder

Everyone gets SAD once in a while.

It’s that time of year again. The time when winter has been dragging on for a few months and we all get a little stir crazy. While this winter has been relatively mild, especially compared to the pandemic last winter, many people are still feeling the onset of seasonal affective disorder.

Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD stems from a lack of Vitamin D.

SAD affects our body’s natural circadian rhythm and can disrupt hormones like serotonin and melatonin, triggering symptoms like depression, fatigue, appetite changes, weight gain, and sleeping issues.

If you are dealing with the symptoms of SAD, rest assured, you are not alone. SAD affects 15 million adults, or 6.8 percent of the total US population. Here are six ways to treat it:

Sun Lamps- Artificial sun lamps help to emulate the natural sunlight that your body craves during the winter. 

READ MORE: Three Ways Sports Can Help Fight Depression

Exercise- Getting physical at the gym or outdoors creates natural endorphins to combal symptoms of depression.

Outdoor Activities- Bundling up and going for a winter walk or hike is a lot more pleasant than you might imagine, I promise.

Meditation- Mindfulness is a great way to combat SAD and the accompanying symptoms.

Vitamin D Supplements- Vitamin D supplements can help to balance your emotions during bouts of SAD.

Regulate Your Sleep- Creating a daily routine, especially regarding your sleeping and waking schedule is one of the best ways to combat seasonal depression.

Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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