Family Health La Clinica

The Wautoma Wellness Corner Days of Darkness and Your Mental Health

Turning back the clocks one hour may be good for business and work productivity but, if you are anything like me, it can certainly mess with your mind and your mood. Feeling gloomy, down in the dumps, and just plain sad seems just to come more easily and naturally at this time of year. This fact becomes especially problematic around the holidays when we are supposed to be full of gladness, smiles, and good cheer. 

Fall and wintertime depression, otherwise known as Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, is all too common as our body/mind complex adjusts to the dwindling sunlight and seemingly omnipresent darkness. Fortunately, your local mental health and happiness guru is here with four tips that may help you manage the winter doldrums. So, without further ado, (drum roll...), I present them here:

Tip#1: Invest in a good light therapy lamp (you can purchase these on Amazon or at a local retailer). Just 20 minutes a day in basking in the lamp’s light stimulates production of your brain’s natural feel good chemicals (read dopamine) that are responsible for elevating your mood. 

Tip#2: Begin taking a good quality fish oil that contains at least 500 mg of EPA and 300 gm of DHA twice a day. Some studies have shown that the chemicals EPA and DHA in the fish oil raise happiness levels in people suffering from mild to moderate depression. Take for at least 4-8 weeks.

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