Do Older People Experience SAD More Often?



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As people get older, they sometimes deal with depression. Their friends and family members might not be around as much, and they can find themselves alone a lot more often. Some enjoy this, but most get lonely. This can be especially bad during the long, dark, chilly winter months when the days are short and there is often less sunlight.


Does Age Matter?


Anyone can suffer from SAD, even young children. Still, though, more older people seem to have depression problems. If they don’t have them all year but only struggle in the winter, they may be dealing with SAD. It’s possible that they had it all their lives and it’s more obvious to them when they’re more alone, or they may have developed it as they got older.


Sunny Climates And Retirement


A lot of older people seem to escape SAD because they retire to sunny climates where there’s less chance of feeling bad in the winter. With the bright sunshine even during most of the winter months, it’s quite possible that someone who might otherwise have SAD would avoid it because of the climate.


Help For Older People With SAD


If you think you might be dealing with SAD, see your doctor. It’s more common than you think, no matter what age group you fall into. Older people are more commonly at their doctors for other ailments, so that’s a good time to talk over any mental health issues that could be a concern.


Getting help for SAD is not that difficult, but taking that first step and reaching out for help often is. Make sure you take that step, so you can get back on the road toward feeling better.




. Longer Nights Can Mean Sadder Days



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When you deal with SAD, you find that you aren’t enjoying things like you used to. Everything seems dull and depressing, and you don’t have much energy for work, fun, or family. If you have SAD and not clinical depression, your symptoms will lift when spring arrives and the days get longer, but they’ll come back when fall and winter returns.


Using Sunlamps To Help You


One of the things you can do in order to alleviate the symptoms of SAD is use a sunlamp. Your doctor can suggest some that will be helpful to you, but you can also do research online to see what’s out there and available. They range in size, intensity, and cost, but they’re all designed to help your body think that the days are longer.


What About Medications?


If sunlamps don’t work for you or they aren’t enough, it’s also possible for you to take medications for SAD, just like you would for clinical forms of depression that last all year round. It’s a good idea to be sure that medication is what you need, though, because they can have side effects. Don’t take it if you don’t really need it. Your doctor can help you make that decision.


Spring Will Come Back


Even if you can’t totally get rid of all of your SAD symptoms, just alleviating some of them or lessening their severity can help you remember that spring is coming. You won’t feel as bad during the winter, and you’ll be able to look forward more easily to the changing of the seasons.


By working with your doctor, you’ll be better able to find the treatments that work best for you. You’ll eliminate some of the trial and error, and you’ll be happier for a longer period of time during the year.




How To Help SAD Without Extra Sunlight



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When people have SAD they generally feel better when it’s sunnier. They can handle a cloudy day here and there, but they don’t do well in the wintertime, when the days are shorter and there just isn’t much sun at all. Getting extra sunlight is important, but there are other ways to feel better.


Medications For SAD


If you’re struggling with SAD, you may find that sunlamps don’t help you or you don’t have the time to sit near them for long enough. You may also not be able to afford them. With that in mind, you can see about getting medications to treat SAD that don’t require sunlight. Some of these work well for people, but nothing works for everyone.


What About A Pet? 


Pets can help people with SAD because they force people to interact and get moving. If they have to play with their cat or walk their dog, they’re less apt to take to their bed or couch and not do anything, even if they still feel depressed.


A Positive Attitude Is Important


It’s hard to think positively when you’re upset, depressed, and dealing with SAD, but making an effort to remain upbeat and happy is important. Don’t let the SAD that you’re dealing with get the best of you. There are still many things to be appreciative of and thankful for.


If you find that you’re not feeling better despite the things that you’re trying, make sure that you see your doctor. There are always other treatments that you can try, and they may be able to help you feel better, even in the winter months.




Will A Pet Help With SAD?



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Studies have shown that a cat or dog can help people live longer, lower their blood pressure, and help with depression and anxiety. Will a pet help you deal with SAD? In some cases it might, but there are always some people who aren’t helped by a treatment that works well for others.


Do You Like Animals?


If you’re not a pet type of person or you wouldn’t have much time to spend with a pet, you probably shouldn’t get one just to help with SAD. While pets do make some people feel better and help to lift their depression, they aren’t for everyone.


What Kind Of Pet Should You Get?


If you do decide to get a pet, getting something you can actually pet. Fish are great, but they don’t require much interaction and you can’t really pet or cuddle them. For a pet to help with SAD, you really need something that you can show affection to, and that will show affection back, like a dog or a cat.


Talk With Your Doctor First


If you’re still unsure about getting a pet, it’s important that you talk with your doctor and see what other options are out there and can help you with your SAD symptoms. There are many great therapies and medications today that you can use, and you’ll be able to find what works for you.


Getting a pet is a big commitment, so be sure that you’re ready to alter your lifestyle to meet your new pet’s needs. If you decide that other treatments would be a better choice, there are plenty of options that your doctor can help you explore.




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