With right approaches, SAD’s impact on school can be minimized

As Iowa nears the end of October, the weather has begun to transition from summer to fall. With this change in seasons, students at Cedar Falls High School begin to experience changes in their day to day life to varying degrees. 

According to Mayo Clinic, SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder or Seasonal depression) is something that is quite common amongst the general population. SAD is defined as a mood disorder that usually affects people who live in areas where there is less sunlight during certain times of the year. Because of this, people with SAD may begin to feel a variety of symptoms associated with depression and anxiety such as sleeping too much or too little, lost interest in things you would usually love, feeling hopeless, eating too little or too much, or just overall discontent with one’s life. 

Sophomore Zoe Castle has been diagnosed with SAD and said, “As I have gotten older I can definitely tell a difference in myself, and it is reflected in my school work. I can see my grades drop and have difficulty keeping them up during the winter.” 

Other students think that there is a correlation with SAD and the introduction of schoolwork in the fall. Junior Adriana Parziale said, “Adding school to my regular depression and anxiety really accentuates those feelings due to the added stress and helplessness. It just seem like seasonal depression due to the fact that school just so happens to be during those months when seasonal depression occurs.” 

While SAD is usually self diagnosable and some may find that at home treatments like exercising for 30 minutes, light therapy or vitamin D supplements (both meant to simulate the sun’s effects on the body) are helpful, but if one is experiencing symptoms of SAD, the Mayo Clinic suggests to always reach out to your family doctor to figure out what treatment is best for you.

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