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How to get winter depression under control
Cloudy weather and rainy autumn afternoons affect the mood of many people. Many develop a seasonally dependent depression (SAD) in the dark season, which is also colloquially referred to as winter depression. Health experts explain what can help.
Dark and cold seasons leave traces
The short days, which ensure that it is still dark on the way to work in the morning and on the way home again, as well as the cold weather leave only a few without a trace. Many people develop a seasonal depression (SAD) in the dark season, which is also known as winter depression. Health experts recommend that those affected do not hack at home. Exercise and healthy eating can help.
Do not hedgehog at home
In addition to the classic symptoms of depression, winter depression also shows "atypical symptoms such as cravings instead of loss of appetite and increased sleep instead of falling asleep and staying asleep," explains the German Depression Aid Foundation on its website.
According to the Barmer, the illness is also noticeable through listlessness, nervousness, tension or sad thoughts.
The health insurance company advises the estimated 800,000 people affected in Germany not to lock themselves in at home.
"If you have the feeling that you are suffering from winter depression, you shouldn't stay idle and wait for spring," says Andrea Jakob-Pannier, psychologist at Barmer.
"Everyone can help their happiness hormone serotonin to get going with simple activities such as walking and thus increase their well-being," said the expert in a statement.
Deliberately doing good
According to the information, the hormones serotonin and melatonin are significantly involved in the development of a seasonal depression.
According to Jakob-Pannier, the body produces larger amounts of the sleep hormone melatonin in the dark months, while the production of the happiness hormone serotonin, which ensures a positive mood, is reduced.
"Because natural light is scarce in winter, you should look for the opportunity to let it take effect as often as possible," explains the psychologist.
A walk at lunchtime is just as recommendable as a bike tour. In addition, physical activity and exercise created a better mood because they had a positive effect on brain metabolism.
Sensual experiences such as a fragrant full bath or a massage could also lift the mood.
Adequate hydration and healthy eating
Further tips and home remedies for winter depression: Make sure you drink enough fluids. Because in addition to sport and light, water also helps to reduce symptoms such as tiredness and lack of drive.
Food also plays an important role in how fit or tired people feel. Local vegetables such as cabbage and the like can help you stay fit in winter. Generally speaking, the menu should not contain too much fat.
Swap showers are also recommended to boost the circulation. (ad)