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As one of the theories behind the cause of SAD has to do with a lack of sunlight, the Sunflower can help alleviate SAD symptoms by increasing the amount of sunlight one can experience throughout the day.

In the wintertime, the amount of daylight hours decreases and the temperature drops.  This means the amount of available sunlight decreases, but on top of that, we spend even less time outdoors because it’s so cold out.

We can’t necessarily experience very much sunlight while spending time indoors because the sun moves across the sky and will travel past our windows — if it even reaches through our windows in the first place.  The Sunflower can change that by guiding sunlight into any window of your choice.

Look at how the mood of this bedroom changes when we used the Sunflower to shine light inside:

Without the Sunflower

With the Sunflower

Read a full description of the experience here.

SAD and depression may arise for one or any number of reasons.  Even if a lack of sunlight isn’t the direct cause in some cases, the Sunflower still helps improve the mood of a room by providing you with natural light that feels good.  Give yourself the best chance at feeling better.  Do everything you can to help improve your mood and your environment.

  • Bring more sunlight into your life and increase the mood of a room with the Sunflower
  • Take care of your body by eating right and getting regular exercise
  • Spend some time outside each day
  • Stay positive: give back to others when you can, set goals for yourself and work towards them

Just because it’s wintertime, doesn’t mean it needs to be filled with darkness and the blues.  There’s beauty and brightness in the winter too!  But if you need a little bit of help, maybe the Sunflower can help you by bringing some more sunlight in to you.

What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), aka Seasonal Depression or the Winter Blues, is a kind of depression that affects a person during the same season(s) each year.

Common symptoms are:

  • Feeling sad, grumpy, moody, or anxious
  • Losing interest in your usual activities
  • Increased appetite and carbohydrate cravings
  • Weight gain
  • Feeling drowsy more frequently during the day time
  • Sleeping more than usual

Symptoms occur at about the same time each year.  For most people with SAD, symptoms begin in September or October and end in April or May (so they usually occur in the wintertime).

SAD is more common in people who:

  • Live in places where the amount of daylight hours changes drastically from season to season
  • Live in places where winter days are very short
  • Are between the ages of 15 and 55
  • Have a family history of SAD
Diagnosing SAD:
You should see a doctor to be properly diagnosed, because many SAD symptoms could also be symptoms of other kinds of depression.  Typically, to diagnose SAD, a doctor will want to know if:
  • Your feelings of depression have occurred during the same season for at least 2 years in a row
  • Your feelings of depression have also subsided during the same season for at least 2 years in a row
  • You’re experiencing many of the SAD symptoms
  • You have a family history of SAD

What causes SAD:

There is no definitive answer as to what causes SAD, but experts pose one possible theory is a lack of sunlight.  Sunlight determines the amount of serotonin the body produces, and serotonin is the brain chemical that regulates the body’s circadian rhythm (your sleep cycle).

For a more in depth explanation of how your circadian rhythm affects your body and mood, Dr. Alice Boyes gives a pretty short and sweet explanation.

How to treat SAD symptoms:

A doctor might prescribe any one or a combination of the following:

  • Light therapy
  • Antidepressants
  • Counseling

But some other ways to improve your mood in the wintertime include:

  • Watch your sugar intake
  • Exercise regularly
  • Spend time outside
The information about Seasonal Affective Disorder given above is based on the information supplied by WebMD.