Winter’s creeping in and it’s THAT cold we’ve started wearing onesies to bed, clinging onto hot water bottles for dear life and wrapping ourselves head to toe in blankets at like 6pm. The miserable and icy journeys to work, the sheer shock to the system when you step out of your warm bed and the endless stream of colds.

In the depths of winter, we’re all feeling pretty sorry for ourselves. But how do you know when feeling a little sorry for yourself escalates into SAD, seasonal affective disorder – a  a complex depressive illness.

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If the hint of sunshine changes your mood from feeling down back to normal, you might be suffering from SAD (or you might just be fed up of the UK’s terrible weather). The symptoms of SAD include:

Depression

Sleep Problems

Lethargy

Over Eating

Social Problems

Anxiety

Loss of Libido

Since the frost has no plans of budging anytime soon, we’ve got a few suggestions of how to deal with it…

Maintain A Healthy Diet

The disorder encourages you to reach for the biscuit tin… but nutrient dense diet is heavily linked to a good mood – you know what to do!

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Exercise Outdoors

Where it’s a walk in the park in your lunch break or a morning jog before work, exercise is proven to get those happy hormones flowing in and natural light (if there’s any going) is also very beneficial.

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Exposure To Light

SAD is linked to your expose to light, not how cold it is outside (although that does rub salt into the wounds). So, however much you want to stay indoors under your 10 blankets, get yourself outside for some fresh air.

If you can’t get any access to natural light, there is another option: SAD lamps.

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These lamps gone in all different shapes and sizes but aim to do one thing: to increase your exposure to light and make you feel better – and trust, they really do work. It involves sitting by the lamp, usually for a minimum of 30 mins each morning. From desk lamps to alarm clocks, these light boxes produce a very bright light, simulating those long summer days we miss so terribly in the darker winter months. This light might improve your SAD symptoms but encouraging your brain to produce melatonin as well as serotonin.