Cutting Down on SAD Following Moving to El Paso

By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group 

SAD after MovingAs exciting as moving to El Paso has been, eventually the moving high fades away and you come back to earth along with a great big thud. If re-entry is throughout the winter time, it can cause seasonal depression--also known as SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). Particularly if your move has taken you someplace where wintertime is indeed a thing--such as if you've gone from Florida to Michigan-you must be ready for some seasonal anxiety symptoms and know how to manage it till the spring thaw.

If you recall anything at all with regards to high school geography, the further north you are, the less daytime there will be during the fall and winter months. The short days seem to go hand in hand with dark dull days, so that it feels like the sun hardly shines for months at a stretch. Then all you wish to do is hibernate--stay at home, snooze, binge watch TV shows, and simply steer clear of the human race. When you have recently moved across the country and are in a new area, and you haven't really settled into a new routine as yet, it is quicker to get caught in the grip of seasonal depression. Thus, here is how you can address it from home, or a couple of solutions a specialist could prescribe if you're unable to keep it under control on your own.

One note--SAD is actually a thing--the Mayo Clinic treats it, and the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) includes it. If you experience the outward symptoms of depression that come with winter time, seek therapy in case you have had the symptoms in the past.

Add light to Your Surroundings

Light Treatments

Phototherapy is the magic bullet for many people with SAD. It's a uncomplicated therapy that scientists think modifies your brain balance with 30 minutes a day of exposure; There are no serious adverse effects and it's a home remedy, so it is worth a consideration. You'll need a light box which produces no less than 10,000 lux (lux factors in the power of the lighting). Sit down by the box--between 16 to 24 inches away from you--while you enjoy your morning cup of coffee, not gazing head on at the light but with your eyes open. Ensure the light box is made specifically for SAD treatment, as it will filter Ultraviolet light.

Basic things--higher-watt bulbs, opening curtains in the daytime, and sitting by a window where you work, if possible--that expose you to extra light will have a notable benefit. Trim back all shrub limbs that dangle over your house to let in additional sunshine, and research putting in skylights to let all the sunshine you possibly can to the home.

Head Out-of-doors

Take a walk, eat your lunch break outside--anything to take in a handful of weak winter season rays. Even a modest boost of Vitamin D is wonderful for you and also going out-of-doors for a brief stroll satisfies that along with getting your pulse up. Early morning sun--even on cloudy days--packs a greater wallop than the weak mid-day sun, so strive to go out to start your day.

Workout and Connect with Others

Being active is the normal method for helping any variety of depression--it gets the endorphins running, which often relieves the outward symptoms of stress and anxiety. If your new residence is located in an area where wintertime sports activities are prominent, take up a new hobby--snow skiing, ice skating, maybe ice fishing. Make an effort to go outside and make friends, even if it's only eating lunch or having a cup of coffee with acquaintances.

Professional Treatment

Should your SAD persists after you've tried to manage it on your own, I highly recommend you get a doctor's help. A psychologist or psychiatrist will do a comprehensive evaluation of your physical and mental well-being and determine if your symptoms are really seasonal or maybe the roots of a more chronic depression. Among the first questions they will likely ask is if any other family members are susceptible to SAD--it is thought to be hereditary. Treatment solutions might be talk therapy, rest or meditation, or even a short-term prescription for antidepressants.

Remember that as wintertime gives way to spring, so will your SAD lessen as the days get longer as well as more comfortable. In the meantime, please get treatment for your SAD to help you enjoy your wellbeing in your new residence after moving to El Paso.

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