May is Mental Health Month. 🌺
May is a time of spring, brings the northern-western hemisphere into longer, sunny days and warm weather. As the old adage, April showers brings May flowers, but in New York, there seems to be more rain than sunny, warm days approaching summer.
If your mood seems to wane, due to the climate or season, and the rain has become a damper, treatment is available.
Seasonal Affect Disorder/ Seasonal Depression (SAD) symptoms:
- Negative, down outlook
- Feeling hopeless, worthless, and irritable
- Loss of interest or pleasure in activities you used to enjoy
- Fatigue/ low energy
- Difficulty sleeping or oversleeping
- Carbohydrate cravings and weight gain
- Thoughts of death or suicide
SAD cause is not clearly determine, research has shown people who have SAD have a decrease in serotonin, possible attributed to lower level of sunlight in fall and winter and an increase of melatonin, a sleep related hormone.
Not all symptoms have to be met to seek treatment.
Bright light treatment is an affective for some people, essentially increasing environmental light exposure. Some studies have shown vitamin D supplement as helpful; always consult a physician. Cognitive behavior therapy has demonstrated effectiveness as a treatment for SAD as well as major depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.
If feeling the rainy blues, consult a Licensed Mental Health Counselor to starting a path to sunnier days. 🌞