Seasonal affective disorder: More than the 'winter blues' - KCTV5 News

Seasonal affective disorder: More than the 'winter blues'

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Many people deal with the cold and winter in crippling ways. And experts say seasonal affective disorder can be more than just the 'winter blues’. (CNN) Many people deal with the cold and winter in crippling ways. And experts say seasonal affective disorder can be more than just the 'winter blues’. (CNN)
FAIRWAY, KS (KCTV) -

The month of February is off to a cold start.

And, people who think their mood may be changing, could be right.

Wednesday morning temperatures were in the low teens and single digits as wind chills whipped near zero.

Many people deal with the cold and winter in crippling ways. And experts say seasonal affective disorder can be more than just the 'winter blues’.

Experts say 20-percent of people experience a change of mood during winter. They say the further a person is from the equator, the more likely it is that they will experience seasonal affective disorder.

The symptoms of seasonal affective disorder are similar to depression as people suffer from lack of energy, heaviness of the arms and legs, weight gain, lack of socialization, oversleeping and not wanting to leave the house.

Dr. Jennifer Osbourne, a Psychologist at Truman Medical Center, says there is a way to deal with it.

“Any type of exercise is excellent. If that’s not possible indoors, doing yoga or any kind of mindfulness or meditation has shown to really be helpful for mood,” Osbourne said.

Other remedies include soaking up vitamin D that is found in sunlight by sitting next to a window or sunlamp and eating a healthier diet that avoids large amounts of sugar or carbohydrates.

“People crave sugar and carbs and things that can negatively impact your mood so try not to give in to those cravings,” Osborne said. “You experience that sugar crash after you indulge in sugar and that can definitely make you feel more lethargic and tired.”

Experts also say staying social through talking on the phone can also help people avoid seasonal affective disorder.

Copyright 2018 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

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