Are you a SAD sufferer and don’t know it?

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It’s coming to that time of year again when for many people it can become more and more difficult to get out of bed in the morning and when energy levels start to dip dramatically.

It’s a time when some people find that their mood becomes low and depression sets in, and their libido flies out the window.

They may experience this every winter only to find that it all changes and they get back to normal again in springtime when the days get noticeably longer.

What we’re talking about here is SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder, a form of winter blues caused by the changing seasons and the lack of light during winter, which means that SAD predominantly affects people living in the northern hemisphere.

The symptoms of SAD can include sleep problems, overeating and weight gain, depression, lack of energy, loss of libido, relationship problems and much more.

The thing is, SAD is a type of depression and as such is considered a mental health problem. Many people suffering from SAD are unaware that what they are experiencing is the effects of a depressive illness which can be helped. They are not lazy as some people actually believe.

Susana Adame, a long term SAD sufferer who wasn’t diagnosed until she was in her 30’s, recently wrote about stigma and SAD in the Guardian newspaper.

“Although Sad is an illness that major health organisations recognise, far too many people go undiagnosed” she said.

“There are many reasons for this, but perhaps the biggest are wrapped around the social stigma that is so intimately connected to depression.

“Depression, despite decades of work by awareness organisations, still has ‘laziness’ associated with it. Some think that if you’d just change your point of view, get out for a walk, eat properly, talk with friends, not isolate yourself, get back to work etc – you’d feel better. Not so.”

One treatment for SAD that is proving to be particularly helpful is the use of special light boxes to help replace the natural bright light that is lacking during the winter.

It involves placing the light box in a position where the light from the box can reach your eyes, you don’t have to sit and stare directly at it. Just 30 minutes a day can be enough to alleviate the symptoms of SAD.

If you think you suffer from SAD speak to your doctor who will be able to give you more information.

Learn how I beat Depression

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