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News » Seasonal affective disorder: a winter illness

Seasonal affective disorder: a winter illness

Winter depression, or Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), is a mental illness that follows climatic changes, with sufferers experiencing extreme depression during the long, dark, cold days of Winter and resolution in Spring. ‘Winter blues’ is a milder case of depressed mood due to the season change in light. SAD is believed to be linked to levels of melatonin, a hormone that is influenced by light, which promotes sleep. Sufferers generally experience a loss of interest, problems with sleeping and eating, irritability and a pervasive depressed mood. Doctors commonly prescribe light therapy, where the patient spends a required amount of time exposed to light, and antidepressants.

Source: summary of medical news story as reported by Poughkeepsie

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About: Seasonal affective disorder: a winter illness

Date: 23 October 2005

Source: Poughkeepsie

Author: Rebecca Imperati


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