Many people often find themselves depressed and exhausted during winter months and they feel like they cannot go on with their lives. Specialists found that this might be a sign that these people are suffering from a syndrome called Depressive Disorder with Seasonal Pattern.
How to identify the onset of this disorder? The first sign to watch for is fatigue, and then it is followed by symptoms of apathy, sadness, lethargy. It was previously known as Seasonal Affective Disorder. The syndrome is quite widespread and affects big parts of the world population, especially those living in regions with tough winters. It is eight times more likely to be found in women and it only affects adults.
The Canadian psychologist Janine Hubbard is an expert in the field and released more statements regarding the disorder. She declared that two to six percent of Canadians deal with a severe form of the disease, with symptoms ranging from sleeping more, excessive desire to stay in bed, lethargy despite the lack of sleep, craving of carbohydrates, weight gain, to difficulties in concentrating, excessive irritability and even the avoidance of social situations.
The Depressive Disorder with Seasonal Pattern can have its onset during late fall and, in some cases, can even last until spring. Everybody has days when we do not want to leave our beds and want to remain in the warm coziness of our home, but if this starts to have an impact on your social life, then it might be the sign of a problem. Hubbard also advises people who are using drugs or alcohol as an escape to go see a specialist.
Since it may start at the end of fall and go on during winter and even the onset of spring, the Depressive Disorder with Seasonal Pattern is caused by the decreasing of sunlight that may have a negative impact on the biological clock. The lowered amount of light affects chemicals in our brain such as serotonin, responsible with regulating our mood, or melatonin, that regulates our sleep.
Light therapy is one of the solutions. People can either undertake this by themselves, by going out more on sunny days, or find a better method recommended by a specialist. Hubbard is currently performing more research on the topic and wants to find new methods to overcome this disorder.
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