Fall is an unmistakable time with new smells and foods of the season. While summer is glorious, fall is unique with the cooler weather changing leaves, the appearance of apple cider, and the expectation of Halloween, a time of fun galore. I revel in good times and good eats. No wonder winter is a disappointment. I usually muddle through, but these past few months, I have not been feeling my best. A little depression, but it has to go away. I was chatting with some friends who put me on to @BeRight_Light and I realised that a visit to the doctor is in order to resolve this. While he isn’t a psychiatrist, he tells me that he can do some tests and find out if I have SAD.
I hadn’t really heard of this ailment so he explained. It means “seasonal affective disorder” and is simply a negative response to the lack of sunlight in winter. After questioning me and doing a mental assessment, he was pretty sure I didn’t have it, but it is easier to cure than depression. I learned an important lesson today. Now I was a bit worried, but he said there are treatments and medications. If I end up being diagnosed with SAD, I will have to get an artificial lamp and sit in front of it for a half hour or more a day during the months that affect me the most. I am glad that it is likely to work immediately and solve my problem of winter blues. The symptoms are similar for either malady so trying the light is an easy way to determine the culprit.
If you feel down certain times of the year, have lost interest in your work or personal projects, suffer from an inability to concentrate, lack energy and verve, and sleep too much, you can be helped. The light is an amazing form of therapy. You must, of course, choose the right box with the help of your doctor. These are also known as phototherapy boxes. It is all about the right intensity and timing. You may not use this appliance if you have bipolar disorder. Fortunately, I am not among the afflicted. What is interesting is how a light box mimics outdoor light. It is a form of simulation that causes a chemical change in the brain. You use it the first thing in the morning and it will set your biological clock for the day. The treatment is safe and effective and approved by the FDA and it will not hurt the eyes.
After trying it out for a few weeks, and feeling much better, I was thrilled that I did not have clinical depression. I believe it is a mild case of SAD. My doctor reached the same conclusion. You must get a prescription for the exact box you need. Insurance isn’t likely to pay for it so it doesn’t matter what shape and size you choose. You can get a small and rectangular light or an upright lamp. I am comforted in knowing that I found help.