The Effects of Seasonal Depression and The Winter On Different People

(Photo Source: PEXELS)

(Photo Source: PEXELS)

Julia Martins, Writer

When the leaves start to change and the holiday decor is displayed at every Marshalls and Target in sight, we know winter is right around the corner. For some of us this is good news. This means ski season, holidays, hot chocolate, warm fires, and sledding. But, for many it’s months of freezing cold days, not being able to go outside without freezing your fingers off, and the never ending labor of shoveling your driveway. 

Many people suffer from seasonal depression and it causes anxiety and loss of motivation. While some may flourish in the cold weather, others close themselves off and stay in their homes keeping away from the cold as much as possible. This, in turn leads to isolation and depression. Most humans need social interactions to survive and if people isolate themselves they don’t have those interactions. 

Ashley Gagnon, a Junior at Pentucket, says, “Me personally, I enjoy the winter time. Every weekend I go up to my ski house. I do competitive skiing and I love it. But I understand that many people don’t ski and don’t have something that keeps them occupied in the winter time.” 

Gagnon added, “I also enjoy the holidays and time off school that comes with the winter. Like Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year, and February break.” 

When asked what she thinks is a good way to get through the season Gagnon responds, “I think finding a hobby or activity that can keep you busy and occupied will help a lot. Like for me I spend my free time skiing.” 

Gagnon also brings up a good point, the holidays are a good time to be happy and enthusiastic, or maybe the holidays are also a hard time for some people. For those who maybe don’t have a lot of family or time off work the holiday’s could be difficult. Then there’s the fact that after the holidays the days simply blend together and it’s harder to stay productive.

(Photo Source: PEXELS)

Seasonal depression otherwise known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is common among many, which occurs during a specific time every year. It happens in climates and seasons where less light appears. People affected by this withdraw themselves from social events and keep to themselves more, making them less productive and prone to loneliness. 

For people who suffer from SAD here are two ways researchers found that help depression. The first way is a light therapy box, which emits light that resembles the light from outside. With around 10,000 lux of light, this tool helps many people with SAD. 

The sun is the most important star; without it the world wouldn’t function. This also goes for many people’s happiness. Once the sun disappears, so does their happiness and their ability to function correctly. 

The second way to help SAD is exercise. Research shows that exercise helps release feel-good endorphins and plenty of other natural brain chemicals that help people feel happier. Any exercise can help like running, yoga, walking, etc. 

(Photo Source: PEXELS)

Many people can agree that the sun makes you more productive. When the sun is out, you want to get up from bed, go outside, run errands, exercise, eat healthy, hang out with friends, and overall get things done to be proactive and productive. 

Junior Alyssa Lare says, “I struggle sometimes with being cooped up inside during the winter. But there are some bright sides to the cold weather.” 

When asked how she gets through the winter time she said, “My dog helps me get through it. So do my friends. I also look forward to the holidays.” 

It looks like the holiday season is a common theme in keeping people sane throughout the winter. 

While the winter time brings Christmas, the New Year, time off school, sledding, skiing, and more, it can also bring sadness, cold weather, and isolation. Whether through our friends, family, pets, or hobbies, it’s the way we handle these times that helps us get through it.