Christmas is an alright time of year.
But it can also be a less-than-alright, or even pretty difficult, time of year for some people.
If you’re a sufferer of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or the lesser intense so-called ‘winter blues,’ you’ll likely find the autumn and winter months harder to manage.
A specific kind of depression characterised by the changing seasons, SAD can trigger feelings of hopelessness, constant low energy states, feelings of isolation, and suicidal thoughts.
The winter blues are characterised by some of the symptoms associated with SAD – like finding it difficult to sleep and having a low mood – but ultimately the effects are not as severe.
Still though, experiencing either can make Christmas time extremely difficult, especially considering the assumption that the festive season is the greatest time of the year for everybody.
As always, if your symptoms are extremely debilitating and you’re finding it difficult to cope, you should always make an appointment with your GP.
They’ll know what steps to take and what treatments will work best for you.
But until then, Insulation Express have put together five simple tips that may help alleviate the symptoms of SAD and the winter blues – even if just a little bit.
1. Light therapy
Light therapy, or phototherapy, is a treatment that exposes patients to bursts of light in a bid to lift their low moods.
It works using light boxes that can be bought online or in certain pharmacies, but exposing yourself to natural light in the day time can also alleviate the negative feelings associated with SAD and the winter blues.
Take walks in the morning and plan as many day time activities as you can.
An hour, or even half hour, of meditation a day has been proven to help alleviate some of the symptoms associated with seasonal depression.
It won’t work for everybody, but at the very least, it’ll give your mind and body a chance to relax.
3. Eating foods rich in Vitamin D
You might not be getting as much sunlight as you used to during the summer months, but you can still avail of some Vitamin D through fruits and vegetables.
When you’re feeling hopeless and depressed, exercising is probably the last thing you want to do.
But if you can find the energy, getting out for a run in the morning, or heading to the gym for half an hour could make a massive difference to how you’re feeling. It’ll also act as a distraction from your low mood.
5. Establish a routine
Stability is everything when you’re dealing with SAD and the winter blues.
Make lists of things you want to achieve during the day, and try to do the same tasks before you go to sleep at night.
Waking and going to bed at the same time every day could also help if you’re struggling with insomnia, as it’ll ensure your body gets used to shutting down and rising at certain times.