Daylight is the dimmest and shortest in the northern Hemisphere at the winter solstice. The worst part is that the next several months will also be dark, though daylight starts increasing gradually. This natural phenomenon is quite clear for those people who need to wake up before the sunrise and leave their work after the sunset each winter.
Although winter weather and this phenomenon may result in a lot of griping, there are some individuals whose problems should be taken seriously by themselves, their healthcare providers, colleagues and relatives. Nowadays, many people develop a biologically based depression in winters. Some of them feel better than normal and fine in summers and springs, but winters and late falls are terrible experiences for all of them.
In addition to depression, seasonal affective disorder is also associated with loss of pleasure and interest in such satisfying daily activities as listening to their favorite music and reading good books. Besides, there are other common issues that they may experience, including withdrawal from their family and friends and reduced work productivity that are hard to justify or explain.
This condition is also characterized by certain physical symptoms, such as appetite changes in contrast to summers and springs. Some patients experience uncontrollable cravings for sweets and such starchy foods as chocolate, cookies, bread and pasta, so they often put on more fat. Others mark clear changes in their need for sleep and ability to sleep normal hours. It becomes difficult for people to wake up in the morning in time for their school or work. Daytime fatigue keeps persisting no matter how much they sleep.
People who sleep very often report the most tiredness, so their long sleep isn’t restorative at all. As days become shorter in falls, there are certain physical symptoms of this condition that are first to be noticed, including appetite changes, sleep problems and daytime fatigue. Depressive symptoms tend to intensify in January and February, and they often lead to unjustified and devastating feelings of guilt, worthlessness, inability to make important decisions, loss of concentration and even suicidal thoughts.
It’s worth noting that patients with this condition can be luckier than people with depression that comes and goes unpredictably. Many of them have a brave and long history of feeling bad in winters, because they know that this issue won’t persist. That’s why some patients refuse from any clinical guidance from doctors, as they have an illusion that this mental problem is just temporary. Others understand that winters are terrible, but they don’t know when and if their symptoms are clinically significant.
There are many people who have winter doldrums or milder versions of seasonal affective disorder than from depression. Even these doldrums can make winters quite challenging for their quality of life, but the good news is that this issue can be solved effectively.
All symptoms and their seasonal patterns must be evaluated carefully, no matter if you have winter issues severely or mildly. This step will help you get a better understanding of this condition. There are many experiences and qualified doctors who can find an effective solution if you need medical help.