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Seasonal Affective Disorder


Winter is here; the days are getting shorter and the nights darker and longer. Do you find yourself feeling down and blue, sleeping longer, more irritable? You may be experiencing the “winter blues”.

For some people, the short days trigger the symptoms of depression, which disappear once the days lengthen in the spring and summer. This “seasonal” condition is known as Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD.

Although many of us get the “blues” in the winter, people with SAD have a much harder time coping during the fall and winter seasons. For a few, the symptoms can occur in late spring or early summer. Like other types of depression, SAD interferes with daily life. People who suffer with SAD report feeling sad and have low energy during the winter. Sleep can be disturbed, and sufferers may not enjoy doing the things that they normally like to do, including spending time with family and friends. They may also crave starchy foods or sugar, and experience weight gain as a result. However, some people experience decreased appetite and weight loss. Overcast or rainy days can make the symptoms worse.

There is effective treatment available. Consult with Canopy EAP for an assessment and recommendations for resources.

If you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms of SAD, consult a professional such as your doctor or Canopy EAP for help. The EAP is here to help. Please call us if we can assist you in any way. We are here 24 hours per day, seven days per week.

Toll Free: 1–800–433–2320 • Portland Area: 503–639–3009 • Salem Area: 503–588–0777