- Winter depression is associated with an imbalance in serotonin.
- Other risk factors are cold and lack of natural light.
- Women are more exposed because hormonal changes also play a role.
Seasonal affective disorder or winter depression it’s more common in women because three out of 10 who have depression have more crises at this time of year. Among the reasons are that there is less light, it is cold and there is a feeling of nostalgia for the December holidays, indicated Dr. Patricia Loranca Moreno, in charge of the Peri-postmenopause and bone metabolism Clinic of the Institute of Security and Social Services for State Workers (ISSSTE).
Reasons that generate it
He explained that in addition to the hereditary factor, this type of depression also has its origin in environmental causes such as low temperatures and lack of natural light. This decreases the serotonin productiona neurotransmitter that helps regulate mood, known as the happiness hormone.
Symptoms that may occur are: sadness and apathy, gloomy outlook, feelings of hopelessness, pessimism and irritation. Also loss of interest in activities you used to enjoy, low energy and difficulty concentrating, as well as falling asleep or sleeping too much, cravings for carbohydrates, weight gain, and suicidal thoughts.
Women are at higher risk
The specialist in Gynecology and Biologist in Human Reproduction, expressed that the Depression is a more common disease in women due to hormonal changes that influence their emotions at all stages of their lives.being more noticeable when the menstrual period approaches, in pregnancy, premenopause and postmenopause due to the variation in estrogen levels.
Antidepressant medications, talk therapy, and light therapy can reduce the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder. Citalopram improves serotonin levels in the brain and the treatment indicated by a doctor contributes to improving mood in the general population with depression, having an additional benefit in women during pre and postmenopause, because it also helps them control symptoms such as hot flashes and dry mucous membranes, among others.
Dr. Patricia Loranca stressed that it is normal to feel sad some days; However, if this feeling persists, the doctor should be visited, who with the different measurement scales will be able to identify if it is a winter depression disorder or even if it is a permanent state in order to guide the patient on the need to consult to a specialist and the treatment to follow.
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