“As I grew older, the arrival of autumn every year brought with it a sense of depression held over from my youth. The coming of winter blanketed my heart with a darkness that seemed to be inescapable.
“Although the world was covered in white, my emotions were black and grim. I became sullen, I gained weight, all I wanted to do was sleep.
“The sadness appeared in late September, and seemed to fade away with the first new leaves of spring, and the call of the arriving robins.
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“Like the crocuses and daffodils awakening from their slumber, my soul seemed to wake up as well.
“As an adult, I have learned to put a name to this seasonal depression: Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD.
“Somewhere, somehow, a wise and knowing person recognized that millions upon millions of human beings across the world acknowledged the same symptoms I had suffered through virtually every autumn and winter of my entire life. This wise and knowing person put a name to it, and suggested treatment: light. Bright, blazing, intense, warm, wonderful light.” – Mirium
Many people suffer from what is call SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder. SAD is a particular form of acute depression.
People born in warmer climates and move to cold climates find they are unusually susceptible to this disorder.
However, no matter where you live, this disorder usually begins when the temperature begins to drop, and the daylight hours grow short.
This winter depression may be accompanied by a craving for sweet foods and a resulting weight gain, as well as difficulty in motivating oneself to rise from bed in the morning before sunrise.
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In severe cases medical attention needs to be sought, especially for those persons whose normal routines are interrupted and they find themselves withdrawn and overly sad, seeking sleep during the daytime hours, and unable to perform their normal duties.
Some people also experience Summer SAD due to lack of exposure to the sun in the summer months.
This may be due to long hours at indoor work or to avoidance of the sun in very hot climates – such as Saudi Arabia. Symptoms of Summer SAD may be poor appetite, weight loss and insomnia.
Either type of SAD may also include symptoms present in some other kinds of depression, such as feelings of guilt, a loss of interest or pleasure in activities, persistent feelings of hopelessness or helplessness, or physical problems such as headaches and tummy troubles.
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