Five Tips to Manage Seasonal Affective Disorder

Five Tips to Manage Seasonal Affective Disorder

Five Tips to Manage Seasonal Affective Disorder

Do you have a difficult time during the winter months?  When the early nights creep in, many people suffer from depression from the darkness and the winter months.  Often referred to as the 'winter blues,' seasonal affective disorder is a form of depression that occurs during daylight savings time.  People often fall into a slump in the winter months, as they wait for the more exciting and bright days of the spring and summer ahead.  As professionals in women's therapy in Orlando, we provide support and guidance to many clients learning how to cope with their depression at this time.  There are a few tips you can follow to help manage your season affective disorder.

Get Outside

To boost your serotonin levels, take frequent walks in the daylight to get some sun.  When you spend time outdoors on sunny days, you can actually boost your overall health.  Not only will you notice a rise in serotonin levels, which leads to happiness, you also give your body some much-needed vitamin C.  This will help prevent lethargy and fatigue associated with seasonal depressive disorder.

Light Therapy

Having a daily dose of sunlight or bright light has been shown to have positive effects on those that battle seasonal affective disorder.  If you find yourself struggling to enjoy your evenings because it gets dark too early, invest in some bright lights for inside your home.  Turn them on to provide you with a substitution for natural light during these hours.

Exercise and Eat Healthy

Treating your body with respect is always a great way to boost your overall health.  Implement an exercise routine that is easy to stick to during the winter months, so that you can stay fit and stay moving.  Eating nutritious and balanced meals will also keep your body in optimal shape so that you can stay focused and avoid lethargy associated with eating too much junk food.  

Medication

If you are feeling down all the time during the winter months, it is important to talk to your doctor.  They may be able to prescribe you antidepressants to provide you with motivation and lessen the symptoms of your disorder.

Find Support

When you are battling seasonal affective disorder on your own, it can be even more challenging than it should be.  Let people in on your struggles and find support so that you prevent loneliness during these months.  Talk to a professional counselor to learning coping strategies and gain insight into your own emotions.  Conversing about your feelings with trusted family and friends will make you realize that you are not struggling alone.

By following these tips, you can lessen the severity of your seasonal affective disorder during the winter months.  Although it may be difficult to get through the months between January and April, it is helpful when you stay healthy and aware of your mental status.  Taking care of your mind during the winter will make it much more worthwhile when you do reach the enjoyable days ahead in the summer.  Contact us for women's therapy in Orlando to schedule your appointment today.

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Heather Oller

Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.