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Battling the Winter Blues

After celebrating Thanksgiving, we are beginning to look forward to the approaching winter months, busy holiday season, and shorter daylight hours.  For some people, the decreased exposure to sunlight can cause them to experience a form of depression termed Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or what is sometimes called the “winter blues.” Women have a greater likelihood of being affected by SAD and being aware of symptoms is important.  While these blues may seem like a mood that will resolve on its own, it is something best evaluated and discussed with a healthcare provider.

If you find yourself facing similar symptoms as those indicated below, take the time to schedule an appointment:

  • Feelings of sadness that linger for at least two weeks
  • Fatigue or loss of energy
  • Sense of helplessness or hopelessness
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Heavy, “leaden” feeling in the arms or legs
  • Social withdrawal
  • Oversleeping
  • Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates
  • Weight gain
  • Difficulty concentrating

Fortunately there are ways to relieve these symptoms: UV light therapy, physical activity, and eating a healthy diet can help alleviate the “winter blues.”

 

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