Seasonal depression is thought to affect 10-20% of Americans
Seasonal depression, seasonal affective disorder, winter fatigue, tiredness; it is a stark reality that during the winter months we are more prone to drops in mood and a dearth of energy. While many people will suffer from fatigue in the winter, for others it takes on the more serious form we know as seasonal depression. There is a biological reason: seasonal depression is a manifestation of a shortage of daylight; the hormone that controls our sleep and waking cycles, known as melatonin, is produced in greater quantities and this could be the end reason for your enhanced level of sleepiness! We are helpless to control the seasons, but we can exercise control over our lifestyles, and this will determine the degree to which the winter months hold you back.
What you can do in the face of seasonal depression:
Control your diet: think about the foods which give energy and those that take it away. Complex carbohydrates contribute clean burning fuel that keeps you going while sugar often boosts you temporarily but leaves your blood sugar low in its wake.
Exercise: it gets you outside, it gets your heart rate up and endorphins rushing, and lets you recoup some of that valuable vitamin D from sunlight that is harder to come by in the winter time.
Control your environment: try to let natural light in, light candles and create a relaxing space that buffers stress at home.
Winter does not have to be your period of seasonal depression.
At Hayes Family Chiropractic, we believe that with simple lifestyle adjustments and regular chiropractic care, you can boost your vitality and keep energy levels high throughout the season. Chiropractic adjustment balances the spine and regulates the nervous system, helping you to think clearer and the energy to flow more freely. While chiropractic is not a direct treatment for seasonal depression, we can help you to address shortcomings in your lifestyle which could be contributing to the overall condition. Today marks solstice and from now on the days are only going to get longer, so take heart and call your Dunedin chiropractor to schedule an appointment today!
Dr. Chris Hayes, D.C.