Coping and supportBy Mayo Clinic staff
Following these steps can help you manage seasonal affective disorder:
- Stick to your treatment plan. Take medications as directed and attend therapy appointments as scheduled.
- Take care of yourself. Get enough rest and take time to relax. Participate in a regular exercise program. Eat regular, healthy meals. Don't turn to alcohol or illegal drugs for relief.
- Practice stress management. Learn techniques to manage your stress better. Unmanaged stress can lead to depression, overeating, or other unhealthy thoughts and behaviors.
- Socialize. When you're feeling down, it can be hard to be social. Make an effort to connect with people you enjoy being around. They can offer support, a shoulder to cry on or a joke to give you a little boost.
- Take a trip. If possible, take winter vacations in sunny, warm locations if you have winter seasonal affective disorder or to cooler locations if you have summer seasonal affective disorder.
- Saeed SA, et al. Seasonal affective disorder. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed July 8, 2011.
- Seasonal pattern specifier. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TR. 4th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2000. http://www.psychiatryonline.com. Accessed July 8, 2011.
- Ravindran AV, et al. Complementary and alternative medicine treatments. Canadian Network for Mood and Anxiety Treatments (CANMAT) clinical guidelines for the management of major depressive disorder in adults. Journal of Affective Disorders. 2009;117:S54.
- Sarris J, et al. Kava and St. John's wort: Current evidence for use in mood and anxiety disorders. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. 2009;15:827.
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