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Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Symptoms and Treatments


Symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder

  • Seasonal Depression - Those affected by seasonal affective disorder experience seasonal depression that usually begins in late fall or early winter.

  • Fatigue - Sufferers often suffer extreme fatigue and irritability.

  • Food Cravings - Many individuals crave sweet or starchy foods and often gain weight as a result.

  • Social Avoidance - Those with SAD often avoid social situations and may feel more sensitive to criticism and social rejection.

Treatments for Seasonal Affective Disorder

  • Light Therapy - Because SAD is thought to be caused by lack of sunlight, light therapy is often an effective treatment approach.

  • Light Boxes - Individuals using light therapy may use a specially made light box to increase exposure to light and reduce symptoms and depression.

  • Medication - Some patients benefit from the use psychiatric drugs, such as antidepressants, in combination with light therapy.

  • Therapy - Researchers have also found that cognitive-behavioral therapy may also be beneficial to those suffering from seasonal affective disorder.

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