Every year, when the days get shorter and the weather gets colder we may find ourselves feeling a bit different than in the summer. The shortened daylight hours can have a bigger effect on our activities, brains and body rhythms than we realize.
Limited Melatonin and Serotonin
The lack of bright light means that the body’s production of both melatonin and serotonin are limited. These are produced when light hits the retinas in our eyes, sending a signal to the brain. Melatonin regulates our sleep patterns, and serotonin is the ” feel good” chemical of the body. When there is a lack of these chemicals, it will contribute to low mood and problems with wakefulness.
Studies have shown that there are different treatments that have a positive effect on regulating low moods during the winter months.
Treatment Plan for Winter Blues
- Acupuncture and Cupping treatment can release serotonin and can be helpful in managing stress and depression. Many clients have found that regular acupuncture and cupping treatments in both the summer and winter months help keep stable moods throughout the year.
- Think about supplementing with Vitamin D. Almost 1/4 of the population are thought to be deficient in the vitamin, and more studies are showing how many different systems in the body this can negatively impact. In summer months, the sun-rays help us in receiving the vitamin D we need upon contact with skin.
- Light therapy through a light box lamp is also a good way to ensure you receive enough light for melatonin and serotonin production. There are many different variations of these lamps that can fit any size or budget.
One benefit of seasonally low mood is that it is predictable and manageable. Create a plan that works best for you before the season and contact us to discuss your options.