Tampa, Florida -
Plant City, FL - December is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) Awareness month which aims to raise public awareness about the mental health condition. The awareness month also works to educate people about how to recognize the symptoms of SAD and what to do if they notice them in themselves or a loved one.
Seasonal Affective Disorder is a form of depression that’s related to the changing of the seasons. For most people, symptoms begin in the fall when cooler weather and shorter days arrive and start to subside in spring or early summer.
While many people experience mild winter blues, people with Seasonal Affective Disorder can experience symptoms that range from mild to severe. Symptoms of SAD include feeling listless and down every day or nearly every day, losing interest in activities you normally enjoy, feeling tired all the time, oversleeping, craving certain foods, weight gain, difficulty concentrating, feeling hopeless, worthless or guilty, having thoughts of not wanting to be alive.
A precise cause of Seasonal Affective Disorder is not known, but it is clear that individuals experience symptoms due to changes in their surrounding environment.
Those who struggle with all forms of depression, including SAD, are at a higher risk of developing a substance use disorder. It's not uncommon for people to turn to drugs and alcohol in an attempt to escape difficult thoughts and emotions. Self-medication is a common factor that drives high rates of drug and alcohol dependency. According to a recent study, approximately 50% of all people who struggle with a mental health disorder will also experience a substance use disorder at some point. Additionally, 37% of alcohol abusers and 53 percent of drug abusers also have at least one serious mental illness.
WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab in Florida is hoping to raise awareness of SAD and its relationship to substance use disorder by sharing tips for coping with the condition in healthy ways. The addiction treatment center recently published, “Tips For Coping With Seasonal Affective Disorder Without Drugs And Alcohol” which outlined healthier coping strategies for dealing with the symptoms of SAD as alternatives to self-medicating with alcohol and drugs.
The article recommends maintaining a healthy balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables all year round, staying connected to social support from family and friends, talking to a therapist trained in working with seasonal affective disorder, and considering taking antidepressant medication such as an SSRI inhibitor.
For people already struggling with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders, WhiteSands offers a unique dual diagnosis treatment program that treats both conditions simultaneously. The addiction treatment center believes that exploring and healing the root causes of addiction provides the best chance of achieving lasting recovery from substance use disorders.
Anyone struggling with addiction or mental health can speak with a treatment specialist at any time by calling (877) 640-7820. Visit www.whitesandstreatment.com to learn more or to begin a 100% confidential live chat with a counselor.
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