Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Guest Blogger: AMANDA KANE, LSW
SAD: Real or Fictitious Disorder?
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a legitimate affliction tied to depression.
SAD indicates a pattern of depressive symptomatology during certain times of year, usually the winter months. It is characterized by multiple symptoms including a persistently depressed, sad, and/or irritable mood. Sufferers may experience overwhelming fatigue, appetite and sleeping changes, and an inability to enjoy activities that were once pleasurable.
Many people recognize that their mood is affected by the weather. Sub clinical "winter blues" are a milder and a much more common version of SAD. Mild depressive symptoms can frequently be treated with increased exercise and exposure to sunlight. Despite the cold weather in many parts of the country, breaking a sweat with a cardio workout such as brisk walking, skiing, or jogging can really improve mood. If you find that these interventions are not enough, consider speaking to a therapist or a medical doctor about additional treatment options.
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