SAD is now a recognised medical condition that is thought to affect more than a million people in the UK and Ireland.
Our lives are now lived mostly indoors, but this was not always the case. In the past most work was carried out outside and we received the correct light signals at the correct time of day and in the correct quantities. Changes in behaviour have resulted in many people getting very little daylight and a large increase in the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
You may ask 'why do i suffer from SAD?' and the answer to that question is often complex. We now know that Seasonal Affective Order is triggered by a lack of light and it is now understood to much more prevalent in the northern and southern hemispheres where light levels and day lengths vary dramatically between seasons. So geography and latitude are important factors in your risk levels and it is known to be more common in Northern Europe than Southern Europe for example. Weather is also a factor as the cloudier the day the lower the light levels which again raises the risk in Northern Europe, including the UK and Ireland.
Seasonal Affective Disorder Symptoms
The symptoms of SAD are many and varied and can vary between sufferers. Symptoms often manifest themselves in depressive feelings such as a general feeling of gloom, anxiety, snappiness and irritability, but others have more physical symptoms like rapid weight gain.
You can find a full list of SAD Symptoms below:
- Sleep Problems
- Daytime lethargy
- Agoraphobia and not wanting to see people
- Inability to cope with situations you would normally find straightforward
- Carbohydrate cravings
- Rapid weight gain
- loss of interest in physical contact with partner
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