Atmosphere And Weather

Seasonal Depression

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"Seasonal Depression"
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Weather affects our mental health in several ways, positively and negatively. Seasonal affective disorder is a way it can directly effect a person's mental well being. Other ways weather affects us are more subtle and can be the result of a combination of a things, like the costs associated with weather damage. Directly or indirectly, weather touches everyone and leaves its mark on their psyche.

Seasonal affective disorder, or more commonly seasonal depression, causes people that are mentally stable through out the year to become depressed in the winter due to the lack of sunshine. Locations where there is less sunshine have an increased number of individuals suffering with seasonal depression. A person suffering from seasonal depression may become suicidal and require hospitalization; many times, they treat them with light therapy. This exposes them to bright lights to help alleviate their weather-induced depression. While seasonal depression is an extreme, it is hard to imagine that the rest of the population does not experience a general sense of blah with the lack of sunshine.

In the winter, many times we forgo leaving the home in an attempt to stay warm. After prolonged exposure to the same surroundings, cabin fever sets in. A never changing environment and the same faces continually surround one. All the time spent with loved ones in close quarters, people may find themselves easily agitated. The little things that may be irksome in small doses become unbearable after time. People become discontent, irritable and argumentative.

Pleasant weather encourages plenty of outdoor activities like swimming, golf, jogs in the park, hiking and countless other activities that are not enjoyable in bad weather. These activities are all forms of exercise. Exercise creates endorphins in the body and endorphins lead to happiness. Exercise also gives you a sense of accomplishment and can improve your body image. With an improved body image, you will also improve your self-esteem. Through this chain of events, weather leaves its mark on our mental health.

Weather can also have a dramatic affect on our daily mood. When a planned activity is rained out and cancelled, one cannot help but be slightly bummed out. After weeks of thirty-degree temperature and a sixty-degree day slips in, it has an uncanny ability to make the day better, even if you only get to enjoy the weather on the way to and from work. A severe blizzard or tornado watch is cause for worry and can dominate one's mood.

Weather has the power to cause electrical outages, car accidents, and damage to people and property. These inconveniences can dampen even the best moods. With the economy in its current shape, money is already a stress for most individuals and having to replace a broken windshield from the branch that the last windstorm deposited on your car, or repairing the damage from a flooded basement are not expenses that people budget for. That compounded with the already existing stress can really get to a person.

Weather is a large part of our lives. We plan activities around it. When one has nothing to say, we talk about the weather. Weather even has its own television channel. There is no escaping weather and even the most desirable climates have to deal with undesirable weather from time to time. It is unimaginable to believe that weather does not have a profound affect on our mental health, from day to day moods to an extended influence.

More about this author: April May Maple

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