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It's Starting...

For the past month or so, like end of summer I've been worrying a bit about my depression starting wondering if it'll get as bad as last year and if anything I do will help it or make any difference whatsoever. Also this past week I have been getting emotional now and again over the tiniest things like on the telly etc. I've also been feeling a bit tired and drained and not particularly confident. Wasn't expecting it to start just yet as it's been really sunny so I've been getting plenty of vitamin D, and I've been eating really healthily and excercising. Anyway I've just ordered some PuraEPA Omega 3 Fish Oil tablets. Took them last year and noticed such a massive difference so hopefully they'll come soon and make me feel better. Also going to have to do alot more excercise I suppose but I'm hoping it'll all get a bit easier once I start Uni so I can get myself into more of a routine with everything.
When does everyone else's usually start with the SAD and how do you prepare yourself?
Also does anyone take anti-depressants during the winter months and what difference does it make in yourself?
elmoomoo elmoomoo 18-21, F 2 Responses Sep 10, 2012

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My heart goes out to you. I too suffer with this malaise. Mine usually starts mid to late September. I can remember as a child feeling it start when 'back to school' chores such as buying books, supplies and clothes began. Now that I'm in my mid 50's the same overwhelming sadness starts and lasts until late January for me. Before I had numerous surgeries that left me with limited mobility, I did a LOT of gardening, both flowers and vegetables. I believe mine starts to subside in early January because the first of my flowers, the snow drops start to bloom and of course, the days are getting longer also. Sunlight plays a HUGE part in my SAD. Mine tends to be worse in the fall, as the days become shorter and shorter. As for preparing myself, I live in an area that has snow, sometimes quite a bit. I find that I am 'housebound' for long stretches, sometimes as long as 2 weeks. I have found that if I can get my house cleaned, and all clutter out of the way, it makes winter confinement much easier. But I have to start early or else I don't do it. Once daylight saving time is over, I don't have the emotional or physical energy to do it. Where I live, the sun has set by 5:30 pm this time of year. I try to keep my home well lit, with clean windows to make the most of what sun we DO get. While I usually have earth tones and neutrals in my home, I change my curtains and as much of my decor as possible to brighter, summer colors, such as sheets, curtains, pillows, etc. I have to force myself to go out on warm days and get some sunlight and fresh air. Sometimes, it actually takes my husband nagging me and giving me no choice to finally go outside, sometimes for just 20 mins or so. But it DOES help. Even when it's extremely bright, such as on snowy days, I don't wear sunglasses to makes sure that I get the full benefit of the sun on my retinas. Normally, daylight enters the retina and stimulates the hypothalamus which, in turn, keeps the pineal gland from converting serotonin to melatonin. In darkness, however, the pineal gland begins synthesizing melatonin (the “asleep” hormone) from serotonin (the “awake” hormone). On really sunny days that are too cold to be out and about, I will sit at a window and just watch the birds at the feeders to get my sunlight. My bird feeders are a Godsend for me because it gives me hope that something is still alive out there! It also forces me to be out every couple of days to keep them filled. I have taken prescription strength vitamin D with some minor improvement. I have been on Xanax for over 15 years for panic attacks and find that it doesn't help much either. At one time, I was taking Serzone (which is no longer manufactured) and it DID help some. I would love to tell you that I have gotten better as I've aged, but in fact, it hasn't. I do find that it helps to know you aren't alone in this. All the best to you in the coming winter and hang in there... spring WILL be back and summer right behind it!

I don't think I'm SAD, but my body clock has a particular cycle if left to its own devices. In summer it will wake me up around 10:30. As winter comes in, it will wake me up after noon, 1 or 2pm given half a chance. This is irrespective of whatever time I get to bed.