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How Changing Seasons Can Affect Our Mood

As we head deeper into spring and the days get longer, many will start to feel an improvement to their mood. Here's a bit about what is going on!

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Now that we are into spring and the days keep getting longer around West Michigan, some can start to expect to see their mood improve with the change in the weather. 

But why did some of us start to feel down in a slump in the first place? It could be the affects of something called Seasonal Affective Disorder, or S.A.D. 

S.A.D. at a base level can cause feelings of depression more days than not, a feeling of malaise or exhaustion, no energy to do activities, irritation, insomnia, or a strong tired feeling. Some of the more concerning symptoms can be a feeling of hopelessness, desire to self harm, feelings of anxiety, or even suicidal thoughts or feelings. 

The good news is that these feelings, while taking hold in the fall/winter, usually start to improve in the spring and summer. Anu Sood, a psychotherapist with Spectrum Health, says that some patients even report a return to normal as soon as the first warm sunny spring day takes hold. Others after daylight saving time kicks in. 

You can watch our full conversation below. 

It's not always an easy return to normal though, especially during the social isolation created by the pandemic. Anu recommends making an effort to connect virtually with friends and to get outside every chance you can as ways to help improve symptoms. She also recommends seeking the extra help of a licensed therapist if you notice a return to your normal not occurring or if you just need that extra bit of help. 

CLICK HERE for a link to behavioral health resources provided by Spectrum Health. 

-- Meteorologist Michael Behrens

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