With early nightfall and dropping temperatures, be wary of Seasonal Affective Disorder

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. - The change of the clocks may mean the change of your mood. With winter looming, it’s getting darker earlier and colder faster.

Leading to a bigger problem – Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a common type of depression where your mood changes with the weather. Michelle Petrosky, SSM Health Director of Behavior Health Nursing at SSM Health St. Louis University Hospital, sees an uptick in the illness this time of year.

“Those days that you just don’t want to get out of bed or that you’ve had plenty of sleep the night before and you’re still exhausted and tired throughout the day,” Petrosky said. “Those are definitely symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder.”

Overeating and weight gain can be other indicators of SAD. Like any other illness, there are things you can do.

Seeking help from your physician is important when you start to think you have signs of the disease. Many turn to light therapy, psychotherapy, medication, or a combination of the three. Another option: embrace the outdoors, despite the weather.

“Go on a hiking trail. Do a small tour. Go to local museums, go for a bike ride,” Petrosky said. “Those are all really great activities that you don’t have to spend all of the day outside.”

If you can’t get outside, light therapy can help. We found a light box on Amazon for only $35. The important thing is that the product says 10,000 LUX. Click here for the link to a light box that can help Seasonal Affective Disorder.


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