Feeling down, tired, and not quite yourself? You may be suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Its that time of year again. The leaves are falling and winter is coming. This change can bring on something that causes us to be tired, down on ourselves, and possibly even depressed. Let me tell you about Seasonal Affective Disorder and how you can deal with it!

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Note: I’ve always believed that this blog is about providing people with credible, reliable information they need, for issues relevant to them. That is why I’ve written today’s topic as it is something that is serious, and affects a relatively large portion of our population. It can affect our friends, family, and is something that needs to be addressed. Let’s get into it…

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It’s that time of year again. The leaves have been falling for about a month now, and snow is just around the corner (crazy to believe I know!). For some of us, this can be a tough time of year. You may be feeling down, tired, moody, and not quite yourself. This in turn, may lead to a state of confusion as you don’t know why you feel like this!

It’s easy to write someone off during this time and say something along the lines of “Oh it’s just the changes in the weather, you’ll be fine” or “Once you’re used to the winter, you’ll get over it”. For some of us however, it’s much more than that and can be something much more physical than just mental.

Let me tell you about Seasonal Affective Disorder. It can cause depression in about 4 to 6% of the population and can cause more milder effects in between 10 to 20% of us (WebMd, 2018). That is why I believe it is important to educate you all on what it is and how you can deal with it. Let me tell you how this disorder comes to occur. Basically, with the changes in seasons and the decreased exposure to sunlight, it can affect our body in many ways. It can cause the levels of serotonin and melatonin in our brain to decrease and increase, respectively. These changes in chemical levels can result in the following symptoms:

  • Fatigue

  • Sleeping more than normal

  • Difficulty concentrating

  • Anxiety

  • Avoidance of social situations

  • Feelings of guilt or hopelessness

  • Headaches

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Now how can you deal with and alleviate these symptoms?

Exercise for many people is a form of medication. Much like the decrease in sunlight during this time period, exercise also causes chemicals to change in the brain. Chemicals called endorphins are released during exercise which results in us feeling good and puts us in a better and more happy state of mind, which can slightly counterinteract the effects of Seasonal Affective Disorder.

I’m not a doctor nor do I claim to have the knowledge they possess. That is why although I mentioned exercise can help to alleviate symptoms slightly. If you or someone you know are feeling depressed or need to talk to someone it is important to seek help from a qualified personnel. Your physician can give you professional advice and give you the help you would like.

If you need to talk to someone sooner, you can call the hotline called Good2Talk (1-866-925-5454), it is for post secondary students and gives you an ear for you to talk to.

Today’s topic was a bit heavy, but it is something I believe is important to educate you about in case you believe you or someone you know, is going through this right now.

As always, thanks so much for taking the time to read and keep working hard!

Written by: Andrew Blakey | Owner of Your Future Fitness | Facebook.com/YourFutureFitnessTraining | Insta: Your_Future_Fitness

References:

Exercise and Depression. (n.d.). Retrieved November 13, 2018, from https://www.webmd.com/depression/guide/exercise-depression#1

Staff, F. E. (2017, June 21). Seasonal Affective Disorder. Retrieved from https://familydoctor.org/condition/seasonal-affective-disorder/

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