Winter has come to Chicago, and that means shorter days and longer nights, and many reasons to stay bundled up indoors. For those who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), the winter months can be especially troubling. Also known as seasonal depression, this form of depression can last for months if untreated and can have major impacts on a person’s life. Hopefully, those suffering from SAD can find some helpful ideas in this article and put them to good use.
Ways to Combat SAD
As with any form of depression, the first step is recognizing the symptoms of SAD:
- Feelings of sadness and loss of joy from activities
- Fatigue and lack of energy
- Appetite changes
- Difficulty concentrating and irritability
- Thoughts of self-harm
If you have begun to notice these changes in yourself or others, then don’t hesitate to seek help and begin looking for solutions. While there is no surefire way to cure depression, finding a focus and exploring several different options can do wonders for your mental health.
Exercise is one such activity that can greatly benefit those who are trying to conquer their depression. Not only does exercise release endorphins and boost self-esteem, but the fatigue you get from exercising leads to more restful sleep, as opposed to the fatigue that occurs in all forms of depression. Exercise also boosts your metabolism, leading to higher energy levels.
Activities such as snowboarding, ice skating, and skiing aren’t the only winter-season exercises available to people. Going to a gym, indoor track, or indoor pool is a fantastic option for those looking to stay fit. Regular winter workouts can also come from short walks outdoors, low-impact aerobic activities at home, and even doing a series of household chores can all contribute to your physical and mental health. Any activity that gets your blood flowing and keeps you warm in the cold weather is worth participating in.
If you are in need of support, please reach out to those around you or seek professional help to make a game plan for your mental well-being. If you want to discover more ways to stay fit this winter season, then contact the trainers at Chicago Chiropractic & Sports Injury Centers for help developing a personalized workout routine!