I struggle every single year with Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, during the Fall and Winter months. My birthday is at the end of September and I specifically remember as a young child not wanting my birthday to be over because I knew that I would feel yucky after that. To this day, I feel just plain blah during the Fall and Winter months due to the lack of sunlight. And if you are from Indiana, you know that you can’t BUY sunlight in Indiana for roughly six months. Aside from moving, I had to come up with a regimen that works for me to kick the Winter blues.
I was first diagnosed in my late 20s. It was bad enough that the doctor put me on anti-depressants. Quickly I realized they weren’t for me. I will spare you the details of all of my side affects, but just know that the odd thoughts that occurred from them were a little frightening. ???? I’m very sensitive to pharmaceuticals so I have to be careful.
I am sharing what I do to kick the Winter blues because without these things, I would be a mess. And, by a mess, I mean I have to FORCE myself to do regular household chores. And by force, I mean it is physically hard to do anything but sit on the couch and stare into space. It’s rough. For those who have it, you understand. I had SO MANY people reach out to me when I mentioned it saying the same exact things as I do. Thus sparking this post.
Here is what I do…. (Remember, do your own research.)
This is something that I just started using this year. It’s something I’ve wanted to try for a long time, but never took the plunge. I noticed a few weeks back when the sun wasn’t out for several days in a row, I felt blah. I just wanted to sit on the couch. It’s an indescribable feeling because it’s not a full blown depression (been there) but it’s more of just a lifeless feeling. Like I stated above, if you have it, you KNOW what I’m talking about.
I asked my little researcher to help me. Deb LOVES to research products. ???? When I am going to make a purchase, she always does what it takes to find me the best deal and the best quality for the money. AND, does the research to know the specifics that I need for a problem. So, this is the light she came up with and these are the reasons she chose this one for me:
This light really seems to be working for me. We have had a few cloudy days in a row and I haven’t noticed that blah feeling popping up. I am one who needs sun so bad in the Winter months that on a completely cloudy day, the sun can come out for five minutes and I feel better for that five minutes. When the sun goes back under a cloud, the feeling immediately comes back.
I had to come up with a natural antidepressant that works for me. St John’s Wort helps with my blah feeling and it takes the edge off of my anxiety. I’ve been taking it every single year for the last 15 years or so. I start taking it in the beginning of September because it takes about six weeks to feel the full affects. And I start weaning myself off of it mid-March and am completely done by April 1.
St John’s Wort isn’t for everyone. It must be discontinued before you have any procedures done because it can act as a blood thinner. It does react to certain drugs, etc. So remember to check everything out before taking any type of natural drug. I’m only sharing this because it is something that works well for me.
I read a study that was done in the Chicago area that MOST people here in the midwest (70% actually) are vitamin D deficient. We absorb Vitamin D through some of the foods we eat but it is very easily absorbed from the sunlight through our skin. Therefore, the lack of sun all Winter makes us all BLAH BLAH BLAH. ???? Two of the symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency are fatigue/tiredness and depression. Do your own research because too much of any vitamin can be a bad thing. But, a simple blood test will be able to tell you whether you are low. I am at a normal level currently but have had to take extra Vitamin D in the past.
We take a Multi-Vitamin all year long not just in the Winter. But, I thought I would throw this on the list. Let’s face it. If your diet isn’t completely ON POINT all the time, you may be lacking in something. And whatever vitamins you don’t absorb in your Multi-Vitamin, you poop it out anyways. Sooooooo, it can’t hurt.
Anytime there is a nice sunny day during the long Winter months, I make sure to get outside and feel the sunlight, either by taking a walk or just sitting in the sun. The warmth on my skin makes me happy. For those of you who have your windows covered with blinds and curtains, open them up on a sunny day. There is something about SEEING the sunlight outside that does it for me. It really does help.
If you guys have anything else that helps you kick the Winter blues, please comment below. I am always open for more suggestions. It’s a real struggle but these things that I have listed have really, REALLY help me get through it. Or chat with me over on Instagram and Facebook. I love to hear from you!
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