Let’s face it: there are a lot of things about the colder months that cause stress. Getting the house picture-flawless for the holidays, making sure you have the perfect gift for everyone. But the season itself could be causing your depression. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a form of depression that primarily occurs in the colder months.
The good news is that there are steps you can take at home to battle the winter blues.
1. Try Aromatherapy
Consider adding some essential oils to help with your daily routine. For instance, studies have found that citrus fragrances and lavender essential oils can help with depression. Put a few drops in your evening bath.
2. Get Some Exercise
This may be difficult in the colder months since you can’t go outside for a brisk walk, but try to incorporate some exercise. Go to a gym or, for a cheaper alternative, get a fitness DVD you can do at home. The main idea is to get your body moving.
3. Get Some Sun When You Can
As the Beatles say, “it feels like years since it’s been here” but the sun will come out a few times during the colder months. When it does, brave the cold and go outside to enjoy some of those rays.
4. Don’t Alter Your Schedule
One symptom of SAD is having trouble sleeping and/or being able to get up in the morning. As hard as it may be, stick to a regular sleep schedule to help with SAD.
5. Take Your Vitamins
Specifically, some Vitamin D. Low levels of this vitamin have been associated with SAD. Try adding a daily supplement.
6. Take a Vacation
If possible, take some time away from the winter weather and go somewhere sunny. You don’t even need to take a week off, just a few days will do wonders for your mood.
Of course, if your depression gets worse or continues into the warmer months, please consult with your mental health provider to see if additional intervention is needed.