This has been an incredibly mild winter here in the DC metro area. I felt the effect myself over this past unusually warm weekend. Exercising outside at the park, abundant sunshine, and more time socializing with friends and neighbors seemed to have everyone in a better mood. That being said, we still have more frigid days in our future. For many people dark and short days, limited sunshine and more time stuck indoors can create a case of the “winter blues”. For others, the changing seasons can prompt a more serious condition known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD is a form of depression that is directly linked to the changing seasons. It includes symptoms of sadness and depression combined with lack of motivation and increased sleeping and eating. Researchers aren’t sure as to the exact cause of SAD although lack of light is thought to affect melatonin and serotonin brain activity which in turn affects mood. Here are some tips for managing this frustrating annual condition:
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This blog is written by the clinicians at Jonah Green and Associates, a mental health practice based in Kensington, MD that provides quality services for children, teens, families, and adults. It is intended as a resource for families who are seeking to expand their knowledge about mental health and mental health services, and also as a resource for families who are seeking quality mental health services, especially in the mid-Atlantic region. Please feel free to post questions and comments on any of the entries as well as on any topics or articles from our companion web site www.childandfamilymentalhealth.com.