Winter Blues

Bitter and dangerous cold has a grip on Chicago and there's no immediate end in sight. This makes it easy for the winter blues to set in.
January 28, 2014 6:19:40 AM PST
Bitter and dangerous cold has a grip on Chicago and there's no immediate end in sight. The "winter blues" can easily set in.

Joining us this morning with ways to help beat the blues is Dr. Robert Shulman, Director of Clinical Services of Psychiatry for Rush University Medical Center.

Winter Blues:
Time to hibernate
Sleep more
Conserve energy
Natural biological rhythm
May be part of Seasonal Affective Disorder
More extreme loss of energy and motivation
Loss of enjoyment/pleasure
May be depressed, but also may not be overtly so

As regards the cold: it makes everything harder!

Treatment/strategies:
Bright light exposure - to the sun or use of specific lights
Exercise
Diet - combating carbohydrate craving
Avoid excessive alcohol use
May consider Vitamin D3 supplementation (levels my drop in winter)

If a genuine Seasonal Affective Disorder impairing daily life, speak with a health care provider regarding more aggressive treatment options. If severe, medications and other treatments can help.