Seasonal Affective Disorder

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a form of depression that tends to follow with the changing of the seasons. Typically, this refers to an increase of depressive symptoms experienced during the fall and into the winter months. Researchers suggest that this form of depression tends to be more prominent during winter months due to the shorter days which mean less exposure to the sun. The sun provides us a natural way of affecting vitamin D and serotonin levels, which influence our mood. Treatment for SAD may include spending more time outdoors to increase exposure to the sun or “Light Therapy” which involves exposure to a special light source that simulates sun exposure. Light therapy should only be used under the direction and supervision of a qualified physician. If you think you experience symptoms of depression, you should speak to your mental health provider.