Steering clear of SAD Following Moving to Wichita Falls

By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group 

SAD after MovingAs exhilarating as moving to Wichita Falls has been, eventually the moving high goes away and you come back to this planet with a great big thud. If re-entry is over the winter season, it can cause seasonal depression--also called SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). Especially if your move has taken you a place where winter season is indeed a thing--like if you've relocated from Texas to Minnesota-you need to be ready for some seasonal anxious feelings and know how to keep it in check through to the spring thaw.

If you recall anything at all pertaining to high school geography, the farther north you travel, the less sunlight you will find during the fall and winter seasons. The brief days seem to come together with dismal gray days, so that it seems like the sun hardly shines for months at a time. That's when virtually all you wish to do is hibernate--stay at home, snooze, binge watch movies online, and just stay away from the human race. If you have just moved across the country and are in a new area, and you haven't actually established a new routine as yet, it is much easier to succumb to the clutches of seasonal depression. So, here is how you possibly can address it from home, or some treatments a pro might prescribe if you can't keep it at bay by yourself.

One note--SAD is actually a thing--the Mayo Clinic treats it, and the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) includes it. Should you feel the symptoms of depressive disorder that come with winter months, seek intervention if you've had the symptoms in the past.

Add light to Your Environment

Light Healing

Phototherapy is the miracle bullet for many individuals with SAD. It's a uncomplicated therapy that researchers believe modifies your brain chemistry with 30 minutes a day of exposure; There aren't any real unwanted side effects and it is a home treatment, so it's worth a try. You will want a light box which produces no less than 10,000 lux (lux factors in the power of the lighting). Relax by the box--around 16 to 24 inches away--while you enjoy your morning drink, not gazing straight at the light but with your eyes open. Make sure the box is made specifically for SAD therapy, as it will filter UV light.

Simple things--higher-watt lights, opening window blinds in the daytime, and sitting by a window where you work, if possible--that bring you to more light will have a notable benefit. Cut back any shrub branches that dangle across your home to let in additional light, and explore putting in skylights to let all the sunshine you can to the house.

Go Outdoors

Go for a walk, enjoy your lunch break outside--anything to soak up some weak wintertime sun light. Even just a small boost of Vitamin D is good for you and heading outside for a small stroll handles that along with getting your pulse up. Early morning sun--even on gloomy days--packs more of a wallop versus the weak mid-day sun, so try to head outdoors to get going with your day.

Workout and Socialize

Working out is the standard protocol for helping any kind of depression--it gets the endorphins working, which often relieves the symptoms of stress and anxiety. In the event that your new house happens to be in a locale where wintertime sports activities are common, take up a new pastime--snow skiing, ice skating, maybe ice fishing. Attempt to go outside and socialize, even if it is simply eating supper or having a cup of coffee with associates.

Professional Therapy

In the event your SAD lasts after you've attempted to regulate it by yourself, I highly recommend you seek a doctor's guidance. A psychologist or psychiatrist can do a detailed assessment of your mental and physical wellness and determine if your symptoms are actually seasonal or the roots of a more severe depressive disorder. One of the primary questions they will ask is if any different family members are susceptible to SAD--it is thought to be hereditary. Treatment options might be talk therapy, rest or meditating, or possibly a short-term prescription for antidepressants.

Do not forget that as the winter season gives way to spring, so will your SAD ease away as the days get a bit longer as well as more comfortable. Meanwhile, please obtain intervention for your SAD in order to enjoy your wellbeing in your new house after moving to Wichita Falls.

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