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11/25/13

Cold Front: Depression and colder months share unenviable link

While some may be embracing the proverbial "Winter Wonderland," you're simply wondering just how you're going to make it through the lethargy and languish that are the winter months.
Days are shorter, naps are longer and the willingness to want to actually leave the couch is almost non existent.
The correlation between colder temperatures, darker days and feeling depressed aren't coincidental but rather known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a form of depression brought on by a particular time of year. SAD is more than just a few stray thoughts of boredom or being tired and uninspired for a few days or weeks but rather continued symptoms for at least a few years.
The difference between SAD and simply feeling exhausted is that those who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder literally can't function as a result of the winter.
Everything from Vitamin D supplements to light therapy is prescribed to help combat SAD and its lingering effects to those who suffer from it. For the rest of the population that might not struggle with SAD but still search for ways to beat the winter blues, you're not ready to throw in the towel between October and April.

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Activity often is enough to transform your outlook, but that's the Catch 22 with incorporating walking or exercise into your daily regimen: you have to actually summon the energy to move from your current position. Often lifting weights or hitting the treadmill aren't enough incentive.
Perhaps the great equalizer is pulling yourself together and going somewhere bright, sunny and warm for the winter as opposed to the alternative: staying put, sleeping a lot and even gaining a few extra pounds you don't want or need.
Ironically, sleep still is important and shouldn't be totally frowned upon. The line between a solid seven or eight hours of rest in comparison to the desire to sleep all day is a fine one. Winter is synonymous with the holidays, shopping, meal planning and party prepping, and sleep often is discarded as optional. A lack of sleep only will compound your feelings of fatigue.
A vacation often can be just what the doctor and winter doldrums ordered so you can simply snap out of the zombie like state you're stuck in and enjoy yourself year round. Finding the perfect spot could be as simple as jetting off to California or finding a spot in the south that still flaunts beach like weather.
For something a little more elaborate and exotic, the Matachia Resort and Spa in Belize beckons even the most weary wintertime warrior. Matachia Resort and Spa, located in Central America, scores plenty of points with potential travelers by combining intimate settings, exquisite food and dining spots and relaxation that includes spa services or simply soaking up that all important sun.
Now all of a sudden, those colder, wintry months seem more like bright spots than dark days looming large until spring.

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