Seasonal Affective Disorder

Man with seasonal affective disorder sitting on railroad track

Seasonal affective disorder is a type of depression that occurs in relation to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months. Customers of Foot Palace have expressed a draining of energy, and feeling moody or often frustrated. Although SAD might feel like a normal case of rainy day blues, it should be taken seriously and treated effectively.

Helpful treatments of Seasonal Affective Disorder are light therapy (phototherapy), regular exercise, vitamin supplementation and plenty of water.

Symptoms of SAD

The usual symptoms of SAD include depression throughout the day, frequent thoughts of suicide, low energy, having trouble with sleep, and loss of appetite. Winter specific depression (often referred to as Winter Depression) has similar symptoms and can be treated the same. Although absolute causes are unknown there are several factors that can play into your disorder. As mentioned in last month’s blog, the disruption of your circadian rhythm plays a major role in your sleep pattern. This disturbance in your sleep schedule can lead to a decrease in serotonin as well as melatonin, both of which can increase SAD. Family history can also play a role in SAD, the link being that those with a family history of depression are more likely to experience seasonal affective disorder. As well as those with depression, people with bipolar are also at higher risk.

If you feel down for a prolonged period of time and can’t get motivated to do activities you normally enjoy, see your doctor. This is especially true if you begin to have suicidal thoughts, start to lose sleep or your appetite begins to decrease.

Alternative Therapy and Treatments Are an Option

Although treatments such as phototherapy and psychological help are shown to be beneficial, alternative therapies such as reflexology and acupressure can help lift you out of your winter funk. If exercise doesn’t seem to be a realistic option for you, a reflexology service can help to increase the bodies’ circulation and help with the production of melatonin. Helping your body fully relax is also great way to beat the winter blues.

For more wellness related articles, visit

Foot Palace Massage Spa Athens

1720 Epps Bridge Pkwy Ste 106, Athens, GA 30606

(706) 521-5290


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Author: Foot Palace

Carolyn North, LMT is a graduate of the Healing Arts Center in St. Louis, MO. She is licensed by the State of MO, Nationally Certified, and a member of the ABMP Massage Association. She brings three years of massage therapy experience to Foot Palace and offers a therapeutic massage blending swedish massage with acupressure and connective tissue techniques. She intentionally creates a massage that will suit your specific needs. Her serene approach offers harmony, balance, and ease to your busy life.

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