10 Ways to help beat the Winter Blues

If you are one of the millions of people that suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, depression, anxiety or find that you feel down during the colder months of the year then our simple 10 Ways to help beat the Winter Blues may contribute to lessening and possibly alleviate certain symptoms. Bask in the sun Spend as much time in sunlight as possible as the lack of natural light is one of the direct causes of SAD as it triggers the production of Serotonin in the brain to help maintain the body’s circadian rhythms.  Try working near a window, go on walks or even if medically advised to do so, try using a SAD light to receive a light therapy treatment.   Even if the sky is overcast, we still receive enough UV rays to start producing Vitamin D, we just need to stay out for longer periods of time. Eat healthy Maintaining a healthy diet is important under any circumstances but can be highly beneficial if you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder.  Plenty of food rich in proteins and nutrients, especially ones high in Tryptophan will help in Serotonin production.   Avoid any foods high in fat, sugar and caffeine as these can contribute towards low feelings and affect your sleeping pattern. Get to bed Plenty of restful sleep is essential in recharging and keeping our body clocks going so getting eight hours of uninterrupted sleep will help you feel much better overall. Socialise Regularly staying in contact with family and friends is essential to anyone staying happy whether it simply be a conversation over the phone, social gatherings or just...

Why choose a Dawn Simulator?

Dawn Simulators are often found alongside SAD Lights as they work in a way that can help stabilise the body’s natural Circadian Rhythms only with a different method.  There are particular reasons as to why you should choose a Dawn Simulator over a SAD light. Unlike SAD Lights, Dawn Simulators are not medically recognised for treating the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder as they are not designed to give enough light to activate the Melanopsin receptors in the eyes, but they can be integral in better regulation of your sleeping pattern by creating an artificial sunrise and sunset to more gently start or finish the day. A number of Dawn Simulators feature alarm clock systems and even radios in some models so that you can have all of the regular features people use to start their day in a single, easy to use unit.  If you struggle to  wake up in the morning, whether due to having to work shifts through the night for example, or even find it difficult relaxing enough to go to sleep; having a Dawn Simulator enables the option to programme either the sunrise or sunset specifically at times to match a desired or natural sleeping pattern. When programmed, gradually the light from a Dawn Simulator will increase and emulate the warming glow of a natural sunrise, or vice-versa so that receptors in the eyes will begin to respond and in turn will help you will wake up more naturally. So if you don’t suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder but find waking up difficult, need to adjust your sleeping pattern or have little natural sunlight...

Top 5 SAD Lights in 2016

Choosing the right light therapy treatment for your individual lifestyle  can be daunting at first with there being so many SAD Lights available to  purchase from various brands that have different functions.  Having this in mind here at SAD.org.Uk we have extensively looked at all of the Seasonal Affective Disorder lights and narrowed them down to the ones we think are the Top 5 SAD Lights in 2016. There are a few key factors to consider in buying a SAD Light that can help to determine not only which of our Top 5 Seasonal Affective Disorder  lights is most suited to you, but any others that you may look at as well.  These factors include the amount of free time you have during the average day for a light therapy treatment; how much you have to spend; and which size is most appropriate whether for the space you have available or in terms of portability. The main focus we feel should be on your individual available treatment time, but we have taken all of these factors along with a few others into our considerations of our favourite five for this year. SAD Solutions BLUELight The SAD Solutions BLUELight is a different type of unit from the rest of these five Seasonal Affective Disorder lights as it uses LED’s that have entirely singled out the blue light wavelength.  Using solely this type of light makes it more intense and efficient so the treatment time is typically 15-20 minutes.  LED’s have a greater lifespan than standard SAD bulbs as well so the BLUELight is much more cost effective in the long...

How should I treat SAD?

If you or a family member has been diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, then you may be wondering how best to treat it and also which may be the most effective form of treatment that applies individually.  There are different ways which are available to treat SAD, some include lifestyle changes that are more readily achievable, others require additional assistance whether it be in the form of light therapy or medication. Light Therapy Treatment by way of light therapy is one of the most effective ways to help with Seasonal Affective Disorder and is recommended by a number of European, British and American medical associations. Due to the lack of natural sunlight playing a major part in causing SAD, light treatment gives the ability to correct that in a convenient way.  If you live in a climate with little to no sunlight for extended periods or work at night then a SAD Light that uses fluorescent bulbs or LED’s can provide simulated sunlight so that your eyes receive enough during the day.  SAD Lights work by triggering the production of Serotonin in the brain so that the body can have normal circadian rhythms. A SAD light treatment can be anywhere from fifteen minutes to three hours depending on the type of unit and bulb to suit any number of individualised treatments and how much time you may have available for a session.  Seasonal Affective Disorder lights are available in a number of sizes and bulb types, some of which are very compact and portable so can be used on any travels, at work or just at home....

What are the Causes of Seasonal Affective Disorder?

Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD can be quite debilitating to those who suffer from its effects.  There are a number of factors that can cause it and not all of them may be applicable to each sufferer, but it is important to know the direct causes, so that if you do have SAD, the necessary changes can be made to help alleviate the symptoms. SAD occurs when the natural Circadian Rhythm of the body is disrupted.  This rhythm regulates sleep patterns, energy levels, mood, digestion and appetite so any disruption or lengthy alteration of a normal daily routine can lead to some or all of these rhythms being interrupted, the direct result of which is commonly; Seasonal Affective Disorder. The main known cause of Seasonal Affective Disorder is a lack of natural sunlight which increasingly in modern society is a regular occurrence with less than 10% of the population currently working outdoors and many working shift patterns.  Not receiving enough sunlight, it means that Serotonin isn’t produced by the brain which is the hormone that triggers us to feel awake, so feelings of lethargy, sluggish-ness and low energy occur. Too much artificial light at the wrong time of day on the other hand can have the opposite effect by causing the brain to remain active for longer which leads to sleeplessness and then tiredness during the day.  The use of indoor lighting and the technology boom that sees many of us spending increasing amounts of time staring at back-lit screens is a direct cause of this. In addition to these main causes of Seasonal Affective Disorder, people who already...