Friday, 7 December 2007

Seasonal Affective Disorder

At this time of year, we hear a lot about SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder but most people don't know what to look for and how to treat it. Insufficient exposure to light can lead to SAD or the 'Winter Blues', who's symptoms include:

Depression - feelings of gloom and despondency
Lethargy - lack of energy, unable to carry out a normal routine
Anxiety - inability to cope
Craving for carbohydrates and sweet foods - leading to weight gain during the winter
Social problems e.g. not wanting to see people
Sleep problems, finding it hard to stay awake during the day but having disturbed nights
Loss of libido - not interested in sex or physical contact
Irregular menstrual cycle

Mark Golding, a friend and MD of Brite Box has written this article about some of the different light therapies available:

In particular it talks about the use of blue and white LEDs and their effectiveness or otherwise in the treatment of SAD.

If you are a sufferer, check out his website as there is absolutely LOADS of interesting info on there, particularly in the "SAD Study" section.