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Facts About Seasonal Affective Disorder

During Winter in the UK, we experience short days, with lots of rain and grey skies, this can lead to a condition known as Seasonal Affective Disorder. So, we have written this blog to highlight some important facts about Seasonal Affective Disorder.

man in winter clothes walking through snowy wood
Factos About Seasonal Affective Disorder

What Is Seasonal Affective Disorder?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that is linked to the change in seasons. It's a form of depression that occurs at the same time every year and is more common in winter. Symptoms of SAD can include irritability, low energy levels, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, changes in appetite and weight loss or gain. People who experience SAD may also have a decreased libido, social withdrawal and an overall feeling of sadness for extended periods.

Causes Of Seasonal Affective Disorder

It is thought to be caused by the lack of sunlight during certain times of the year. The change in daylight affects our circadian rhythm which impacts our alertness, sleeping patterns and moods. Another potential cause could be related to hormones like serotonin and melatonin which are affected when we don't get enough daylight. Low levels of serotonin may contribute to feelings of depression.

Risk Factors of Seasonal Affective Disorder

Certain factors may increase your risk of developing SAD, including

  • Living far away from the equator – people who live in areas closer to the poles have more extreme seasonal changes and therefore, a higher risk of SAD.

  • Having a family history of depression or other mental health disorders – having a first-degree relative with SAD increases your chances of developing it yourself.

  • Low levels of vitamin D – low levels of Vitamin D can lead to increased feelings of depression and make you more at risk for developing SAD.

  • Women – women tend to be more likely to be diagnosed with SAD than men

  • Age – although SAD can occur at any age, it is most commonly seen in people between the ages of 15 and 55.

How to Prevent Seasonal Affective Disorder

The good news is that there are ways to prevent or reduce the symptoms of SAD. Here are a few tips that can help.

  • Get outside during daylight hours – even if it’s cloudy and raining, try to get outdoors every day for 15 minutes to let your body take in natural light

  • Exercise regularly – regular exercise is effective in reducing symptoms of depression

  • Eat healthy foods – eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables and lean proteins will help keep your energy levels up

  • Make sure you’re getting enough sleep – getting quality rest each night can help improve your mood and make you feel more energized throughout the day

  • Talk to someone about how you’re feeling – if you’re feeling overwhelmed, it can help to talk to a trusted friend or family member

  • Seek professional help – if your symptoms are severe and impacting your daily life, it may be beneficial to seek out the help of a mental health professional

Hypnotherapy for Seasonal Affective Disorder

Hypnotherapy is designed to help you answer the question "What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?". It helps you to uncover the root causes of your SAD and create positive changes that will help you manage your symptoms. By using relaxation techniques, cognitive-behavioural therapy, visualisation and affirmations, hypnotherapy can be used to reduce feelings of sadness and anxiety associated with SAD.

Hypnotherapy strives to understand the causes of your challenges. So, in a typical session, your hypnotherapist will ask questions to try and identify the thought patterns, behaviours, beliefs or even traumas that may be at the root of your symptoms. Once these have been identified, hypnotherapy can help you create positive changes by exploring new coping mechanisms.

Contact The Self Image Institute

We hope that our facts about seasonal affective disorder this blog has helped to answer the questions "what is Seasonal Affective Disorder?" and "How can it be Treated?". Our expert hypnotherapists at The Self Image Institute are dedicated to helping you take control of your symptoms and improve your mental well-being. If you're looking for help to manage Seasonal Affective Disorder, or require hypnotherapy treatment to help with stress, anxiety, smoking addiction or dieting, then contact us on 07534 448713 or to find out more about how we can support you on your journey.

We are here for you and ready to provide the guidance and support that you need to help you become the best version of yourself.

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