BOSTON – Many of us get the “winter blues” when the clocks turn back and it’s suddenly dark in the late afternoon. Less exposure to natural light disrupts our bodies’ internal clocks and causes chemical changes in the brain which can affect mood and sleep.
In fact, according to an American Psychiatric Association poll, nearly 40% of adults say they experience a drop in mood come winter.
But five percent of U.S. adults suffer from something more serious, a form of depression called seasonal affective disorder or SAD where they feel sad or depressed most of the time, lose interest in activities that once brought them pleasure, experience fatigue, sleeping or eating too much or too little and may have thoughts of death. The condition can be treated with antidepressants, light therapy, and counseling.
But there are some things all of us can do to try to keep the winter blues at bay.
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