Here’s Why Tons Of Illinoisans Are Feeling Depressed Right Now
If you've felt a drastic change in your mood recently, you're not alone. Tons of Illinois residents are feeling the winter blues and it's not going away anytime soon.
In the summer time, we tend to be outside more soaking in all that free vitamin D from the sun, the breeze, and be more active. Once fall and winter hit in the Midwest, seasonal hibernation kicks in and sometimes it's hard to get outside with dropping temperatures.
I'm guilty of going into a "seasonal funk" every year around this time. I try to stay productive, find ways to boost my mood, and stay far, far away from getting the "winter blues".
The Winter Blues Is Real - Here's How To Beat It In Illinois
Winter blues actually has a technical term called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
"If you're like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. These symptoms often resolve during the spring and summer months. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer and resolves during the fall or winter months."
I didn't know this was even a thing until I asked Google why I always felt blah during the winter months. I guess lots of other people were asking the same question because there were so many results!
If you've started feeling any of the following, you might have a case of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
- Feeling listless, sad or down most of the day, nearly every day
- Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
- Having low energy and feeling sluggish
- Having problems with sleeping too much
- Experiencing carbohydrate cravings, overeating and weight gain
- Having difficulty concentrating
This can have a huge toll on our internal clocks, melatonin levels, and reduce the amount of serotonin in our bodies. Lack of sunlight can have a negative impact on us and sometimes we don't think about it!
How do I prevent Seasonal Affective Disorder?
So, if you've been feeling sluggish and want to get out of feeling depressed, try exercising to activate those dopamine levels, eating a balanced diet, drink lots of water, spend time with people you love, and do activities that relax you so you can reduce those stress levels.
I'm working on all of these right now because I've been in a funk since fall started. Trust the process and you'll beat those winter blues!