❤️Anyone else struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)? Or just nervous about the stress in holiday winter months?
👊Personally, it can hit me pretty hard, and everything going on makes me feel a bit anxious. The weather can make you feel like you just want to stay in bed all day and hibernate.
👉Today on the Blog I’m going to share with you what SAD is, what to look for, and coping tools for early prevention
❤️I have seen this first hand working with women in my Emotional Wellness Program and with kids in my Speech Therapy practice. I’ve experienced it myself and why I am writing this blog to help with early prevention.
🌨Weather changes plays a big part, I also think because November is getting close to the end of the calendar year, some feel hopeless and helpless about the future and what the new year will bring.
👉Read this article for more information. Some research indicates that November is a time when depression rises.
👉One looks back at the current year is not happy with all accomplished and thinks negative thoughts about how the year has gone, and feels very pessimistic that the coming year will be any better.
👉This is why it is important to be informed and understand what depression is and what it isn’t, and what can be done.
💪Early prevention can help.
What is Seasonal Affective Disorder? According to NIH
👉Many people go through short periods of time where they feel sad or not like their usual selves. Sometimes, these mood changes begin and end when the seasons change. People may start to feel “down” when the days get shorter in the fall and winter (also called “winter blues”) and begin to feel better in the spring, with longer daylight hours.
👉In some cases, these mood changes are more serious and can affect how a person feels, thinks, and handles daily activities. If you have noticed significant changes in your mood and behavior whenever the seasons change, you may be suffering from seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a type of depression.
Symptoms of major depression may include:
- Feeling depressed most of the day, nearly every day
- Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
- Experiencing changes in appetite or weight
- Having problems with sleep
- Feeling sluggish or agitated
- Having low energy
- Feeling hopeless or worthless
- Having difficulty concentrating
- Having frequent thoughts of death or suicide
For winter-pattern SAD, additional specific symptoms may include:
- Oversleeping (hypersomnia)
- Overeating, particularly with a craving for carbohydrates
- Weight gain
- Social withdrawal (feeling like “hibernating”)
Specific symptoms for summer-pattern SAD may include:
- Trouble sleeping (insomnia)
- Poor appetite, leading to weight loss
- Restlessness and agitation
- Episodes of violent behavior
What can you do if you notice symptoms of SAD
- Talk with a health provider
- Get your Vitamin D levels checked
- Get out in nature a bit. Walk 20 minutes a day. Just find ways to move your body at least 20 minutes a day
- Join a gym during this time.. Get a regular workout routine
- Social connection is very important, talk with a friend, join a small group, Wellness group, family member etc.
- Get out in sun light or keep natural light on in you home as much as possible, get out of bed, get active as much as you can daily
listed below is the action steps I do weekly to help myself as well as what I coach the women in my Emotional Wellness program. We hold each other accountable to do activities daily to focus on our mental health and follow up with each other every 2 weeks in a zoom conference call to support each other and stay socially connected.
- Get outside for 20 minutes a day, (I walk my dog after dinner, get the mail etc.)
- Join a gym (I joined Orange Theory and go 3 ‘ a week)
- Schedule with a friend or family member go hiking a few times a week just schedule a time to get outside in nature. (I have not done this yet. I plan to do 2 times a week when kids are off School for the holidays with my two boys and my two dogs)
- Journal (I do daily)write how you want to feel today (use a feeling word) and write out 3 action steps how you are going to align your actions move forward on those 3 goals. Feels so good to check it off when done and have a purpose and goal in place and notice how resilient you are.
- I am hosting a few Pop up Festivals in my neighborhood to honor of UNICEF World’s children Day which is Nov. 20th, Pop up Festivals are celebrated all over the world to help share free, playful, meaningful activities to help grow their emotional intelligence and take action on goals. (So needed right now) also a way for me to get out in community and stay socially connected with adults and help kids.
- I do emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) tapping a holistic meditation a few times a week
- I snuggle with my 10 year old and dog at night and watch tv series he likes before bed
I hope these tips help, please share if you or a family member have experienced any of these symptoms and what you do to cope.
Please reach out of you need additional support by replying back to this email.
Remember together is better,
- How To Take Control Of Your “What-iffing” Thoughts To Calm The Anxious Mind - February 22, 2021
- Stress, Grief & Relationships Is Impacting Kids/Teens Mental Health…Resources To Help - February 14, 2021
- How To Help Your Kids/Teens Improve Confidence & Mental Health - February 11, 2021