Winter affects many people in different ways and some people are so busy that they may not even notice how they are affected. If you have noticed that, lately, you’re experiencing some or all of the following symptoms, there is a possibility that you may have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
- Loss of energy
- Heavy, “leaden” feeling in the arms or legs
- Social withdrawal
- Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
- Appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates
- Weight gain
- Difficulty concentrating
While many people may just feel the reason that they are sleeping more or don’t feel like going outside is because it is cold in the winter, for some people it is not just a choice they make because of the cold weather.
Mild forms of SAD are believed to affect as many as 20% of people in the United States. If you think you might be one of them, keep reading to learn more about the signs of this disorder.
Anger and irritability are common—yet often overlooked—symptoms of depression and SAD. Research suggests that people with SAD are significantly more irritable than healthy individuals. They may also be more prone to anger than people with regular (nonseasonal) depression.
A 2006 study that compared groups of people with active SAD and regular depression found that more than 40% of the people in the SAD group experienced sudden fits of inappropriate anger, compared to just 29% in the other group. Those with SAD experienced 19 of these “anger attacks” a month, on average.
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