When the hustle and bustle of the holiday season ends, winter officially sets in. The temperatures plunge below freezing and we spend more time indoors, which may lead to feelings of sadness. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a mild form of depression that commonly occurs when the seasons change.
According to Psychology Today, an estimated 10 million Americans are diagnosed with SAD each year, while as many as 20 percent of people experience the symptoms.
How can The Chiropractic Health Center of Glastonbury help you beat the winter blues?
1. Chiropractic Adjustments
Chiropractic care is a natural approach to pain relief, independent of medication and surgery. Treatment alleviates discomfort and gives patients the renewed ability to move and participate in their favorite activities.
The primary focus of chiropractic care is the spine. A prominent symptom of SAD, stress is also a common trigger for spinal misalignments. Chiropractors specialize in correcting these misalignments, which place excess stress on vertebral discs. We improve range of motion, relieve discomfort and ease feelings of stress and anxiety that stem from chronic pain.
The spinal cord and brain are extensions of the central nervous system, which controls the body and mind. Spinal misalignments put pressure on the nerve root, disrupting the path of nerve signals. When messages to the brain are blocked, mood swings can result.
According to the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research, 76 percent of patients with SAD who underwent chiropractic care reported improved emotional and mental health.
2. Better Sleep Patterns
If you feel extra tired this time of year, it could be caused by your circadian rhythm. When Daylight Saving Time starts, our internal sleep-wake cycle gets thrown off and never fully adjusts before spring arrives. Fatigue is another symptom of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
To combat poor sleep patterns, take time to wind down before bed. Relax your mind and body with meditation, rather than your cell phone or watching TV. Make sure you aim to get enough sleep for your age – 7 to 9 hour per night for adults.
3. Nutritional Advice
Beyond chiropractic care, our team can also provide nutritional advice for overall health and wellness. Eating more fruits and vegetables boosts your immune system and helps ward off illnesses that will ultimately make you feel worse.
Lean proteins and oily fish also have omega-3s and amino acids that boost energy levels and overall mood.
4. Functional Exercises
People who enjoy outdoor activities may pause their regular fitness routines this time of year. It can be discouraging to be kept from your favorite activities, but it’s important to keep moving to avoid feelings of sadness. Exercise releases endorphins that improve mood.
5. Massage Therapy
The American Massage Therapy Association cites several ways massage can help ease the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder. Regular treatments decrease the production of stress hormones, lower blood pressure and improve mental health.
Alternatives 4 Health, part of The Chiropractic Health Center of Glastonbury, offers several types of massage, including Swedish, deep tissue, sports massage and trigger point therapy. Learn more!
Whether you have symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder or simply want to improve your wellbeing, learn what our team at The Chiropractic Health Center of Glastonbury can do for you. Contact us today!