Pain and Weather

Published on 6 February 2024 at 14:44

Joint aches and rain are one way that weather and pain are connected. Are there others?

As the warmth of summer fades into autumn and winter many people face Seasonal Affective Disorder which is a type of depression that follows a seasonal pattern. 

NHS explains that SAD is also known as "winter depression" since symptoms are usually more apparent and  severe during the winter. Although, some people with SAD may have symptoms during the summer and feel better during the winter.

The exact cause of SAD is not fully understood, but it's often linked to reduced exposure to sunlight during the shorter autumn and winter days. The theory is that lack of sunlight might stop a part of the brain called the hypothalamus from working properly, which may affect the production of melatonin (the body may produce it in higher than normal levels) serotonin production (lack of sunlight may lead to lower serotonin levels, which is linked to depression), and a person's circadian rhythym (internal clock),  your body uses sunlight to time various important functions, such as when you wake up, so lower light levels during the winter may disrupt this.

It's also possible that some people are more vulnerable to SAD as a result of their genes, as some cases appear to run in families.

I had been in a program for Major Depression in which they use magnetic energy to cause you to grow new, hopefully happier, neural pathways, but my insurance no longer covers that hospital. How this relates is that the doctor that runs the program called me to discuss my problem. He suggested that I buy a light therapy lamp, especially with winter coming. I did, it was pretty cheap on Amazon. I have been using it, intermittently since that's all my life allows. I also recommend it to those that work third shift, since they never get enough sunlight. Since then I discovered that I am indeed Vitamin D deficient, which is also a result of not enough sunlight. It does seem to help me.


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