Seasonal Depression – What are the Causes and How Can You Cope
The Fall and Winter months can trigger depression symptoms for many people. Seasonal Depression, also known as Seasonal Affective Disorder, is a pattern of depressive moods that start and end at the same time every year, most often in late Fall and early Winter.
If this sounds familiar, it might be time to look for Seasonal Depression Treatment Moorestown. At Mind, Body, and Soul Therapy & Counseling, our expert clinicians are experienced in guiding you through Seasonal Depression symptoms.
Seasonal depression shares many of the same symptoms as other depressive disorders, and can include many of the symptoms listed below:
- Feeling down or depressed most of the day, nearly every day
- Decreased interest or motivation
- Hypersomnia (or oversleeping)
- Daytime fatigue or lethargy
- Overeating or weight gain
- Craving carbohydrates
- Difficulty concentrating
- Decreased socialization
Some of the possible causes of Seasonal Depression include:
- Decreased sunlight
- Decreased Vitamin D
- Drop in serotonin levels and melatonin levels
- Shorter days
- Colder weather resulting in less activity
- Stress of the season
- Negative thought patterns related to winter months
If you are feeling down or depressed this winter, below are some ideas on how to cope:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (or CBT for short) is a specific type of therapy that works to restructure unhelpful thoughts and increase helpful behaviors. CBT can be used for many types of depression, including Seasonal Affective Disorder. If you are interested in CBT, many of our Mind, Body, and Soul therapists are trained in CBT and we even have CBT specific group therapy options so that you can learn skills quickly in a supportive environment with peers!
- One of the theories as to why people become more depressed in the winter months is that the lack of sunlight triggers depressive symptoms. Light therapy is the utilization of a specific type of light that mimics sunlight to help boost mood. You can purchase a lightbox through online retailers.
- Antidepressants may be helpful if you are experiencing depression. If you are interested in learning more about antidepressant medication or meeting with a psychiatric provider, we have helpful, informative and empathetic psychiatric providers on staff at Mind, Body, and Soul.
- A healthy routine can help to boost mood when feeling depressed. When the cold weather and lack of sunlight are pushing you to stay home in bed, try to establish a routine that emphasizes self-care and healthy socialization. Take small steps to enhance your routine, like starting a 5-minute morning meditation, creating a daily gratitude list, or incorporating movement into your daily life.
- Often after the holidays, we are more inclined to take time off from social activities. However, spending time with the ones we love and having new social experiences can help to remind ourselves of the positive aspects of life, especially during the difficult months of winter.
If you believe that you or a loved one may be struggling with Seasonal Depression or other depression symptoms, we can help! At Mind, Body, and Soul Therapy & Counseling, we have a team of caring and helpful therapists who can help you navigate seasonal depression.