Seasonal affective disorder and chronic pain

Seasonal affective disorder and chronic pain

The “winter blues” is a common phrase for mood changes during colder months; however, those blues are really a disorder called Seasonal Affective Disorder. Those with chronic pain who may already be suffering from depression may be more likely to experience Seasonal Affective Disorder.

What is Season Affective Disorder?

This disorder causes depression in patients, usually beginning in the fall and continuing throughout winter. Although less common, some people may experience spring and summer versions of the disorder, too. The cold weather seasonal change can bring feelings of loneliness and depression almost daily.

What are symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder?

Seasonal Affective Disorder can have different symptoms for many people and can depend on the time of year it begins. Below are a few of the most common symptoms associated with cold weather Seasonal Affective Disorder:

  • Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Oversleeping or insomnia
  • Appetite changes
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Low energy or feeling tired
  • Difficulty concentrating or feeling agitate and sluggish
  • Feeling hopeless, worthless or guilty
  • Having frequent thoughts of death or suicide


When should you get help for Season Affective Disorder?

While it’s normal to have “down” days, if your feelings are persistent or affecting your daily life, you should reach out to your doctor or mental health professional. Seasonal Affective Disorder is a common disorder during the cold months and reaching out to a health professional for treatments can help you find healthy ways to maintain your wellness.