Irina Igumnova / Think Stock
If you are like me, you would abolish Daylight Savings Time. Daylight saving means shorter days and less exposure to sunlight. Although we are technically gaining an hour, it can throw our entire system off. When the sun starts to set around 4:30 and it gets cold, it can be hard to handle. However, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and parts of Arizona do not change their clocks at all. There have been proposals to do away with daylight savings altogether in our area but so far, we are still changing our clocks every fall and spring. On the bright side, the sun rises earlier which is good for early birds and morning commuters.
On the other hand, daylight savings can affect our circadian rhythm and sleep patterns.  As the weather gets colder and days get shorter, you are more susceptible to Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD. Typical symptoms include depression, low energy, change in appetite, and sleeping too much. In the United States, as many as 20% of people have the 'winter blues.'
Here are five ways to lift yourself up during the coming winter.
  • 1

    Talk To Your Doctor

    First and foremost, it is important to identify seasonal affective disorder with medical professional as it is a form of depression. There are plenty of screenings that can help determine depression. Talking to your doctor can open doors to treatment and therapy.

  • 2

    Light Therapy

    Using a light box as artificial light therapy can help you get in sync with your circadian rhythm. It is recommended to sit in front of a light box for one hour every morning to alleviate symptoms of SAD.
  • 3

    Dawn Simulator

    Just like light boxes, Dawn Simulators are alarm clocks that wake you up by simulating the sun by gradually increasing light intensity. Full spectrum dawn simulators is the closest to natural sunlight.
  • 4

    Take Vitamin D

    Lack of Vitamin D can contribute to depressive symptoms. Consider taking vitamin D regularly or eating foods rich in vitamin D.
  • 5

    Take Advantage of the Sun

     During this time, it's important to keep your body moving. Bundle up and go for a walk to take advantage of the sun. When you are indoors, open your blinds and let the sun shine through!