Seasonal blues are all too common. Our bodies sometimes react negatively to change, and studies show that winter has an especially adverse effect on our mental health. Dark, gloomy winters are said to contribute to a shift in our mood, especially due to the lack of natural light.
Winters are long, and spending them feeling low and miserable is not the way to go. However, many adults fail to seek help because they can’t separate a lousy day from seasonal depression. Here are some signs that can help you figure out whether you’re dealing with the winter blues or something more.
Is Your Mood Predictable?
Do you sense your funk coming before it does? If you often find yourself feeling low on a specific time period, the chances are that you’re dealing with seasonal depression.
The best way to figure this out is to keep track of when your depressive moods tend to start. Is it the shift in weather? Does your mood pick up once things start to warm up? If so, then you are dealing with a seasonal low.
However, if you find yourself struggling with the nine symptoms of depression for a prolonged period, you might be dealing with something more perennial.
Have Your Every-Day Habits Changed?
A depressive slump is a prevalent side effect for both seasonal and year-long depression. However, how it manifests may be different; this can help you understand which condition you’re dealing with.
Studies show that people with seasonal depression are more prone to binge-eating and oversleeping. In contrast, people suffering from year-long depression more often deal with loss of appetite and insomnia. Of course, this isn’t set in stone, and exceptions are possible, but it’s a pattern noted in most patients.
What Does Your Therapist Say?
No matter what kind of depression you’re dealing with, the end result can be incredibly debilitating to the body and mind. Instead of mulling over what you might have, it’s best to seek professional help.
A licensed therapist can help you better recognize what you’re dealing with and give you the resources you need to effectively tackle the problem. The coping strategies you learn can help you beyond your sessions and serve as a guide for the future.
If you’re looking for a licensed psychologist in Birmingham, Alabama, get in touch with David Myers, Ph.D. The licensed therapist helps patients be more in touch with their feelings and find coping mechanisms that serve them better. Contact us today to book yourself an appointment.