OPINION: It’s time to spring into better mental health this season

With winter finally leaving its bone-chilling cold behind, feelings of seasonal depression are going to the wayside.

 

After a rejuvenating spring break, getting back into the swing of things can be hard. But with temperatures that are well above freezing, it is starting to feel easier to get up in the morning and take on the day.  

 

Seasonal depression, clinically known as Seasonal Affective Disorder — funny enough, it’s acronym is SAD -- is a depressive state that occurs once winter begins and typically lasts until spring or summer.

 

Per the National Institute of Mental Health, SAD is diagnosed four times more often in women than men, making this much more of a risk for women. That said, guys, don’t forget to check up on your mental health, too. Mental health is just as important for men as well; don’t let stigmas make men believe that their mental health doesn’t matter.

 

It’s tough for many to deal with seasonal depression. It feels odd because it seems like it pops up out of nowhere. Suddenly, a student’s grades, mood and sleeping habits all seem to take a major hit. It’s confusing and quite honestly scary if people aren’t familiar with what’s going on.

 

Mayo clinic cites that some symptoms of SAD include oversleeping, weight gain, tiredness and cravings of foods high in carbs. This one is a little too relatable, as most people pack on the holiday pounds and don’t think much of it. In fact, their holiday pounds could be a part of SAD.

 

The tiredness associated with SAD can also severely impact a student’s performance. With being overly tired comes oversleeping or a lack of will to do things, which can negatively impact attendance quickly. Most students end up using absences in classes quickly, or just negating homework.

 

With springtime officially here, there is nothing better than a nice morning with hints of warmth. As the bitter cold is finally leaving, grabbing a nice cup of coffee in a somewhat warm morning and taking on the day feels great.

 

After a long, brutal winter, it is wonderful to begin to feel the impact of a seasonal depressive state leave. As temperatures begin to rise and we start to see the sun more, the greatest feeling is leaving the winter mindset behind.

 

That said though, the sun isn’t the end all be all. There are plenty of ways to help during a depressive seasonal state, and if people find themselves in a slump, there are many ways to help tackle these feelings this time of year.

 

With warmer weather, it doesn’t mean people must go outside. Spending some time indoors and reading a good book, drinking coffee, or watching a favorite show can improve a person’s mood, or just spending a lazy, self-care day to rejuvenate is always a necessity.

 

The weather may be nicer now, but that doesn’t mean one must force themselves outside — taking care of one’s mental health is something that only the individual knows how to do best.  

 

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