Daylight is important to maintaining mood and energy, but we’re now at the point where we get only about nine hours of light every day. The lack of light, as well as cold and cloudy weather, can have a negative affect on your mood.
Winter blues are very common this time of year, whereby your mood gets down from time to time.
More significant depression of your mood could be considered Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, where the time of year can have a significant impact on your mental health.
Coping with this type of depression does take some effort, says Baxter Chandler, the Director of Behavioral Health at Holyoke Medical Center.
“They (people with seasonal depression) want to get as much light as they possibly can, as much natural sunlight. They want to keep moving. One of the worst things that we can do with depression is hold up and pull the shades down even more and stop trying,” Chandler said.
Speaking with a doctor or therapist might be necessary if prolonged depression from lack of sunlight sets in, and medication may prescribed as part of the solution.
The good news for seasonal depression sufferers is that starting December 21st, the amount of daylight will start to increase until the beginning of summer.