weather. Unfortunately, summer can lead to depression in people. PsychCentral, a website geared towards mental health issues shared 5 things that cause summer depression.
1. Summer seasonal affective disorder – In approximately 10% of individuals who experience SAD, their bodies work counter intuitive to everyone else. The longer summer days and warmer temperature actually bring about unhappiness.
2. Changes in schedules – Summer for parents with children can bring about a change in mood. Children are out of school and trying to find a babysitter can be stressful and expensive. Furthermore, vacations can cause disruptions in sleep-wake cycles, appetite, and other routines that occur throughout the year.
3. Body image – Summer equals sun and sand. It can also equal poor body image. People tend to feel self-conscious about their bodies. For them, summer can be a grueling time where they would rather stay covered up.
4. Financial problems – Vacations or even stay-cations can be costly for people. With the rising cost of gas and the already increased costs of hotels/motels during the summer months, summer can be expensive if one wants to travel. For parents of children, this can also mean more money going into groceries. Children also want to play sports or camp and this can increase depression symptoms.
5. Heat – people who live in warm weather locations or areas of the country where the humidity is unbearable can become depressed easier. Staying inside may be boring for some who want to get out but can’t. Buying takeout food which may not be the most healthy could be also done which can lead to depression.
Anyone experiencing depression during the summer months can do a few simple things that can make summer more exciting and get one out of the summer blues.
1. Get plenty of sleep – While summer months may have more sunshine during the day, our bodies still need
plenty of sleep. We need to be rested both physically and mentally.
2. Exercise – Summer can be fun and give people the opportunity to get out of the house. For those who need something other than the gym, try going out and rollerblading, biking, jogging, rock climbing, or swimming. Mixing up exercise routines can be fun and easy to do in the summer.
3. Be social – Being around others is always positive and helpful for people dealing with depression. We as humans are
social creatures and love interacting with one another.
4. Planning something fun – this does not mean that you have to go on vacation. However, plan an event that you can do that would be fun and exciting (i.e. family cookout, taking a short trip to someplace nearby that you have always wanted to go). Doing things like this will keep you motivated.
5. Get on a schedule – Begin planning how you want to arrange your summer schedule as soon as possible to work around the kids being off school, if you are off from work during the summer, or other things that may cause your routine to be off.
Humans love routines and the quicker you can get on a routine, the better off you will feel.
If you are still experiencing summer blues, don’t hesitate to talk with your medical doctor or mental health provider about your symptoms to determine if any changes need to be made.