Seasonal affective disorder

light therapy could be the key

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Seasonal affective disorder light therapy, introduction

Seasonal affective disorder or SAD for short is also called winter blues and winter depression. SAD is a particular type of depression, which affects people at a reoccurring time each year usually at winter and autumn.

SAD typically occurs throughout the southern and northern hemispheres. It is rare for anyone living within thirty degrees of the Equator to suffer from SAD. Why? Because the daylight hours are constant, long and very bright.

Regular SAD symptoms include:

  • Lethargy - lack of energy , feelings of general fatigue.
  • Apathy - a inability to concentrate as well as a loss of motivation
  • Overeating - craving for sweet food and carbohydrates which general leads to a gain in weight
  • Sleep problems - Difficulty staying awake, frequently oversleeping, sometimes early morning waking and disturbed sleeping in some cases, disturbed sleep and early-morning waking.
  • Social problems - withdrawal from social situations and social interaction and interaction
  • Mood changes - cheerfulness and bursts of hyperactivity (this is called hypo-mania) in autumn and spring
  • Anxiety - tense feelings and an inability to manage with stress.
  • Weakened immune system - increased vulnerability to catching flu and winter colds.
  • Loss of libido - reduced interest in physical contact and sex.
  • Depression - feeling low, sad, weepy, sometimes despairing, and hopeless.
  • Interest loss in normally enjoyable activities.

SAD appears to develop from insufficient bright light during winter months. The area of the brain that controls sex drive, temperature, mood, sleep, and appetite is called the hypothalamus. SAD is believed to be caused by a biochemical imbalance in that area.

When light goes into the eye, nerve impulses are stimulated to go to the hypothalamus. Hypothalamus movement is affected as well as its control functions if not enough light enters the eye.

Some people like to use a dawn simulator, as one of the SAD symptoms is not being able to wake up in the morning. The dawn simulator is programmed to gradually improve its intensity until it reaches its full capacity before the user awakens.

Most SAD patients generally use a 10,000 light box. For some people, thirty minutes in front of the light box is enough, other people need longer.

Return from Seasonal affective disorder light therapy back to natural healing home

Return from Seasonal affective disorder light therapy back to light therapy


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