Some people only experience depression during the winter when the days are shorter. According to a recent analysis, the first week of November will see the peak of the seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a type of depression.
According to a statement from Emily Simonian, a licenced marriage and family therapist at the counselling service Thriveworks, which conducted the analysis, “Knowing when to expect the onset of seasonal depression can help [individuals] create a treatment plan with or without the help of a professional.” “For instance, planning for pharmaceutical treatment and knowing how long it takes for particular medicines to start working properly would be helpful if you work with a psychiatrist or would like to begin. It can also be helpful to prevent seasonal depression by using coping mechanisms, getting started on projects, or making travel plans.
“More than just the winter blues,” according to the American Psychological Association, describes SAD.
Similar signs of depression and SAD include:
- Gloomy attitude
- Decline in interest
- Extreme or difficultly sleeping
- Gaining weight and consuming more carbohydrates and sweets
- Feelings of despair or hopelessness
- Ideas of suicide
Although the degree of the symptoms can vary from person to person, they all share the characteristic of interfering with relationships occasionally to the point of being incapacitating.
Despite having similar symptoms to other forms of depression, SAD is distinct from them. The primary distinction, according to the APA, is that SAD “lasts for a season, often the winter months, then disappears for the rest of the year.” “You might have a case of SAD if your winter blues are severe and have persisted for at least two winters.”
In its investigation, Thriveworks, which forecasts that seasonal depression will peak around Nov. 6, also noticed that there has been a 30% rise in the number of online searches for the term “seasonal depression” since last year. The authors developed a predictive model using Google Trends data for the search phrase “seasonal depression” for the previous four years as the basis for their peak season prediction.
The Northeastern United States had the highest search activity, according to the authors’ analysis of search term data by metropolitan region. Holyoke, Massachusetts, and Cedar Rapids, Michigan, which were at the top of the list of the 15 American cities with the most “seasonal depression” searches, were listed. “The average change in monthly temperature lowers by more than 10 degrees for these cities with the highest search interest,” the scientists wrote after included meteorological data in their analysis.