Tips to Manage Summertime Blues!
Summertime! When the weather is warmer, the sun stays out longer, pools are open, and everyone is having the time of their life. At least, that’s what television and movies seem to want you to believe. Not everyone is happy and excited during the summer. Summer depression is real and affects 4-6% of Americans yearly.
What causes seasonal affective disorder? Just like the “winter blues”, where too little sunlight can affect a person’s mood, the opposite is true for those suffering with summer depression. Too much sunlight can disrupt our bodies natural production of melatonin causes an effect to our sleep cycle.
Not only are there factors with sunlight, but other issues in the summer can affect our mood. Financial stress of feeling the need to go on vacation, do activities with friends and family or even just the stress of an increase in our electric bill from running our air-conditioning unit. Other factors such as allergies, heat intolerance, and body image issues can all play a role as well.
What are signs of summer depression?
· Losing Weight
· Loss of appetite
· Feeling like the sun is too bright
· Difficulty concentrating
· Manic feelings
· Lack of interest in hobbies and activities
How to manage summer depression?
1. Make sure to get plenty of rest. Try to go to bed and wake up and the same time every day. If the sunlight is bothering you, try black out curtains in your bedroom. If the noise of families and others outside effects your sleep, try a white noise machine to help block out the noises.
2. While being carefree and having no schedule can make others feel great, for some, having a schedule and sticking to it can help you feel in control during this summer months. Especially for families with small children, going off the school schedule can be stressful for all. Having a routine/schedule that you follow daily can help you feel in control of your time.
3. Exercise! Exercise can help you feel in control of your body. Workout in home in the air-conditioning, or if wanting to go outside, try to go out early before the temperature rises.
4. Plan a fun activity. Whether it’s a vacation or a just a trip to another town, having something fun to look forward to will help keep your spirits up.
5. Relax. When life gets too stressful, just take time to breathe. Try a yoga class or meditation and take time to just be.
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