Health Corner December 2022
Health Corner: December 2022
Hello Glenwood Forest Community and Friends,
“Tis the season to be jolly.” That is what I think about when the month of December comes around. This is a time of year that we all should take the time to reflect on what we have accomplished during the past eleven months, what we want to do prior the year coming to an end and most importantly what are we most grateful for.
Being grateful does not take a lot of effort when we practice being grateful on a daily. Even when we focus on one area of our lives it is not as stressful when we show gratitude for our health status. If you find it difficult to find joy and happiness during certain times of the year, you may be having symptoms of depression.
According to research, the change in seasons can cause us to feel differently. The term used to describe what someone is going through is called seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which is a type of depression that's related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you're like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. These symptoms often resolve during the spring and summer months. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer and resolves during the fall or winter months.
Treatment for SAD may include light therapy (phototherapy), psychotherapy and medications. Don't brush off that yearly feeling as simply a case of the "winter blues" or a seasonal funk that you have to tough out on your own. Take steps to keep your mood and motivation steady throughout the year.
In many cases according to Mayo Clinic reports, SAD appears during late fall or early winter and go away during the sunnier days of spring and summer. Less commonly, people with the opposite pattern have symptoms that begin in spring or summer. In either case, symptoms may start out mild and become more severe as the season progresses.
Signs and symptoms of SAD may include:
Feeling listless, sad or down most of the day, nearly every day
Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
Having low energy and feeling sluggish
Having problems with sleeping too much
Experiencing carbohydrate cravings, overeating and weight gain
Having difficulty concentrating
Feeling hopeless, worthless or guilty
Having thoughts of not wanting to live
Fall and Winter SAD includes the following symptoms:
Symptoms specific to winter-onset SAD, sometimes called winter depression, may include:
Appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates
Tiredness or low energy, social withdrawal (feeling like “hibernating”)
Most of us at times may feel sad, lonely, or depressed. Feeling of depression is consider a normal reaction or response to a loss, perceived loss, life's struggles, or injured self-esteem.
But when intense sadness -- including feeling helpless, hopeless, and worthless -- lasts for many days to weeks and keeps you from living your life, it may be something more than sadness. That's when it's time for you to seek medical help.
Your regular doctor is a good place to start. Your healthcare provider can test you for depression and help manage your symptoms. If your depression goes untreated, it may get worse and last for months, even years. It can cause pain and possibly lead to suicide, as it does for about 1 of every 10 people with depression.
Recognizing the symptoms is key. Unfortunately, about half the people who have depression never get diagnosed or treated.
The new national mental health hotline number is 988. If you or someone you know is suffering from a crisis, get help as soon as possible.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). You also can text the Crisis Text Line (HELLO to 741741) or use the Lifeline Chat on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website.
For the full articles please visit: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/seasonal-affective-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20364651