Do you feel blue or down in the dumps during the long winter months and in need of relief? If so or you know someone who does, I invite you to read this blog to learn more about alternative treatments that can help provide relief.
What is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is known to be a type of depression that occurs during the change of seasons from the Fall through the winter months. It can occur as early as the summer, but is more common and severe during the winter. Common symptoms include fatigue, low energy, and loneliness. I believe the following except from the Atlantic article, entitled “Will Norway Ever Beat the Winter Blues?“, best describes the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) perspective of why seasons affect our overall well-being. “The idea that our physical and mental health varies with the seasons and sunlight goes back a long way. The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine, a treatise on health and disease that’s estimated to have been written in around 300 B.C.E., describes how the seasons affect all living things and suggests that during winter—a time of conservation and storage—one should “retire early and get up with the sunrise. … Desires and mental activity should be kept quiet and subdued, as if keeping a happy secret.” If you can relate, then I definitely suggest reading further!
Acupuncture and Other Self-Cultivating Activities Can Help Reduce SAD Symptoms
If you are experiencing the symptoms listed above, that doesn’t mean you have to suffer until Spring time. Here are some effective alternative treatments that can help! Acupuncture is commonly known to treat symptoms similar to SAD by balancing and harmonizing qi or the body’s life-force energy. This would definitely be a great place to start. However, if you really want effective results and to maintain your well-being, it is suggested to do acupuncture in combination with the following self-cultivating activities.
- Outdoor Activities: Fight the urge to stay indoors during the cold winter months by participating in outdoor activities that nourish the soul. For example, going skiing or accompanying your kids as they go sledding outdoors.
- Healthy and Balanced Diet: Do your best to eat clean healthy food and those that are in season. For instance, try incorporating a pear into your daily green juice instead of watermelon.
- Stay Connected to Close Friends and Family: This is not only key to staying well balanced during the winter but all year long as well!
Please note that it is strongly suggested to explore acupuncture in combination with other Western medicine professionals and approaches (i.e. mental health counselor or light therapy).
Contact us at Naturna to find out more about acupuncture, nutrition, and herbal solutions for Seasonal Affective Disorder and more. Email us at [email protected] or give us a call at 646-609-4250!
Geddes, Linda. (2017, March 14). Will Norway Ever Beat the Winter Blues? Retrieved November 14, 2018 from https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2017/03/seasonal-affective-disorder-mosaic/519495/
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. (2015, February 25). Natural Treatments for Seasonal Affective Disorder. Retrieved November 13, 2018 from https://www.pacificcollege.edu/news/blog/2015/02/25/natural-treatments-seasonal-affective-disorder