Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Autumn and S.A.D.

It's now three days after Daylight Savings Time ended and the days are now noticeably shorter. There was a full moon yesterday afternoon at 5 pm... not a pale moon in a blue sky, but the full on moon in a dark, indigo sky.

This brings to mind, for most people, cosy family dinners, maybe a glass of wine and a book by a fireplace or just a good evening of Dancing With The Stars.

But for many this time of year brings on Seasonal Affective Disorder, or S.A.D.
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is episodes of depression that occur at a certain time of the year, usually during winter. The disorder may begin during the teen years or in early adulthood. Like other forms of depression, it occurs more often in women than in men.People who live in places with long winter nights are at greater risk for SAD. A less common form of the disorder involves depression during the summer months.Symptoms usually build up slowly in the late autumn and winter months. Symptoms are usually the same as with depression:
  • Increased appetite with weight gain (weight loss is more common with other forms of depression)
  • Increased sleep and daytime sleepiness (too little sleep is more common with other forms of depression)
  • Less energy and ability to concentrate in the afternoon
  • Loss of interest in work or other activities
  • Slow, sluggish, lethargic movement
  • Social withdrawal
  • Unhappiness and irritability
I, like many of us in the gender gifted community deal with depression on a regular basis, however when you also factor S.A.D. in, it is easier to hit the tipping point into a deeper depression... i speak, of course, only from my personal experience, as always YMMV*.

How do i deal with it... well i have a full spectrum lamp that i will sit under like a big old flower *giggles* and some others seem to think this helps.
"Light therapy using a special lamp with a very bright fluorescent light (10,000 lux) that mimics light from the sun may also be helpful.
  • Follow your doctor's instructions about how to use light therapy. A common practice is to sit a couple of feet away from the light box for about 30 minutes every day. This is usually done in the early morning, to mimic sunrise.
  • Keep your eyes open, but do not look straight into the light source."
  • other things that can help... a daylight walk, or any activity that gets you out of your usual spaces or routines. to wit...
  • "As with other types of depression, antidepressant medications and talk therapy can be effective.
    Taking long walks during the daylight hours and getting exercise can make the symptoms better. Keep active socially, even if it involves some effort."
Remember, as always I Am Not A Doctor. If you suspect you are suffering from any form of depression, long or short term, cyclic or seasonal, contact your doctor or mental health professional, but always recognize the signs.
Remember, as i always say, the gender gifter are special people, Take care of yourselves.

Biggest, Warmest Autumn Hugs!

*your mileage may vary

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