Seasonal Affective Disorder is an illness that very few people had ever heard of five years ago. Now there is a lot of study being done on this disorder and people who suffer from it are getting some help. Since SAD usually strikes people during the winter months people for years assumed they had "cabin fever". The affect that the Sun has on SAD sufferers is that it is lacking in their environment. As winter days shorten and we have less sunlight SAD begins to affect more and more people. Here is how and why it happens.
Light waves in the visible and infrared range are good for humans. Humans deprived of sunlight or with decreased exposure to sunlight during the winter months may develop Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD is a form of clinical depression. People with SAD will experience the following symptoms:
Melatonin is released when it is dark and was first believed to influence our mood. Scientists now suspect the hormone serotonin is responsible for SAD because it influences brain activities including sleep and eating behaviors, and mood regulation.
Remember SAD is a psychological disorder and requires professional medical diagnosis and treatment. If you think you may be suffering from SAD contact your doctor.
©Copyright 1998 Elizabeth
Beckett, Holly Bernitt, and Vishwa Chandra.