Lifeline Connections

Seasonal Affective Disorder

What Is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is one of the many types of depression that comes around during certain times of the year. Symptoms include changes in appetite or weight, sleep and fatigue. This is very similar to clinical depression. Seasonal affective disorder greatly impacts a person’s ability to function and its important for people to seek treatment when they feel like their symptoms are out of hand.

Risk factors

  • SAD is more common in women and those farther from the equator.
  • The risks of developing SAD increase if they have family members with depressive disorders. 

SAD can occur in any season

It is possible for seasonal affective disorder to develop during the summer, spring or fall – not just winter and symptoms vary by season. In the winter the common symptoms are an increase in appetite, weight gain, fatigue, an increased need for sleep and trouble concentrating.

In the summer the symptoms are typically decreased appetite, weight loss and trouble with sleep in general.

Treatment options for SAD

The most common treatment is light therapy (phototherapy). This replaces the sun missed during the fall and winter months, and sometimes light therapy is combined with cognitive behavioral therapy, medication and/or counseling.

There are many different ways to combat mental health disorders and each patient is different. If you or someone you know has a mental health disorder, like depression or anxiety; please contact the professional team at Lifeline Connections. You can visit, our Services & Locations information or call (360) 397-8246 for more information.                    

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