Those who don’t embrace the winter season with the same eagerness as snow sport enthusiasts may find themselves suffering from the winter blues, also known as winter depression or Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
Low mood during the winter months has been noted as far back as 1845, however, it was not formally recognized as a disorder until the 1980s, parient.info explains. “The mean age at presentation of SAD is 27 years,” according to the website.
SAD is estimated to affect approximately 10 million Americans. Beginning in the fall and continuing into the winter months, symptoms include difficulty waking up, craving carbohydrates, and weight gain. The symptoms become worse as the hours of daylight become shorter.
Other than the obvious cold weather conditions and lack of sunlight, winter blues may be caused by a variety of other factors as well, such as holiday stress, family obligations, money worries, lack of exercise, and poor nutritional choices.