It’s dark, it’s raining and let’s be honest, pretty miserable outside. Since the clocks went back a few weeks ago I’ll be honest, it’s been a little bit more of a struggle. For many of us, it’s normal to feel a little bit blue in these months, but there are times when this goes deeper. During the winter months, there are many people who have to deal with Seasonal Affective Disorder, also known as SAD. But what is the difference between feeling down and having SAD.
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that comes and goes in a seasonal pattern.
SAD is sometimes known as “winter depression” because the symptoms are more apparent and tend to be more severe during the winter.
The symptoms often begin in the autumn as the days start getting shorter. They’re typically most severe during December, January and February.
SAD often improves and disappears in the spring and summer, although it may return each autumn and winter in a repetitive pattern. (NHS Website)
In my personal experience of living with depression since I was a teenager, the winter months can make depression worse in itself, particularly after the excitement of Christmas is over.
While some will just call it the ‘winter blues’ regardless of whether your depression is seasonal or throughout the year it is still depression and something that people need help with. I don’t agree that having SAD is any lesser a pain or struggle than other types of depression, hence why I wanted to start the conversation and talk more about this.
Mental health issues impact so many lives and it’s important to talk about different types and their causes to get help and beat stigma at the same time. If you feel like you are struggling, maybe it is sadness or perhaps you just don’t feel like yourself talk to someone.
If you see a doctor and feel like they aren’t listening go back and see another, write down how you are feeling and why you think that is. Our minds are both brilliant and confusing things but together we can make the world a little brighter and a little easier.
What are your experiences of SAD? Let me know in the comments below.