Insight to Seasonal Affective Disorder


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Lonely women sitting on the the sofa at home during christmas

As the seasons change, many people may experience low moods and depression due to weather and scenery changes. This shift is known as Seasonal Affective Disorder or S.A.D. The Rampage is here to inform you about the different aspects of S.A.D. with the help of Lodi High School teacher Mr. John Holoduek (Teacher of AP Psychology, Sociology, & US History II). 

When asked about the common symptoms of S.A.D., Mr. Holoduek explained that some common symptoms include feeling sluggish, problems with concentration, and losing a sense of enjoyment in activities that one used to find joy in. While anyone can exhibit these symptoms, it is important to note that “feeling down is different than being clinically depressed.” Those struggling with this disorder have a variety of treatments such as Light Therapy, Psychotherapy (talk therapy), and medication.  

Unfortunately, S.A.D. is often dismissed as a “real” illness. In response to this debate, Mr. Holodeuk agrees “it is a real disorder.” Then we asked, “Why do you think it occurs?” Mr. Holoduek responded, “It may occur because some people may refrain from outdoor activities after work and school, and this has an effect on people’s socialization with one another. Plus, less natural light from the sun during winter months has a downing effect on our emotions.”

The last question we asked was “What are your thoughts on it and advice for people dealing with S.A.D?” He explained, “One should be mindful to watch themselves if symptoms arise. Before seeing a doctor, try getting out in the sunlight more even when it is cold. Changes in diet and activity level can also have a positive effect. However, if symptoms don’t dissipate, it is preferable to seek medical attention.” 

Both adults and children should be advised that Seasonal Affective Disorder is a very real issue and should be recognized more within society. Try going outdoors during the changes of the season and enjoy the new scenery! Whether it is Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall try to find things that uplift your mood!