Beating the winter blues

By Heather Sawaski, Local 5 News

Published 02/06 2014 04:35PM

Updated 02/06 2014 10:47PM

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) - Record-setting sub zero temperatures are taking their toll.

"You have to bundle up," said Chris Scargill of Green Bay. "Some days I feel like I lost a bet."

"Sometimes I just feel like staying in the house doing nothing," said Jesse Jacquart, of De Pere.

They are feelings expressed by many people across north east Wisconsin this winter. But for some, it can go even further.

"Usually Seasonal Affective Disorder will result in blue, dysthymic, which is low grade depression," explained Brian Cagle, a clinical psychologist with Bellin Health.

Cagle said the number of patients he treats usually spikes this time of year.

"This winter, maybe a little bit more than others because it has been a particularly harsh winter," he said.

Seasonal Affective Disorder, also called S.A.D., or the winter blues, leaves some feeling down and depressed during the dark and dreary winter months. Usually women in their teens to early 40's.

Even when it's this cold outside, experts recommend the best way to beat the winter blues is to get out, stay active and get plenty of sunlight.

"You dress in layers, appropriately for the weather, the vast majority of days during the winter time you can get out and do something," added Cagle. "Walk, run, snowshoe, ski or whatever."

Also, bright light therapy, more social interaction and plenty of sleep can be effective anti-depressants. And be sure to keep in mind the warm weather activities you most look forward to.

"It'd be nice to get to some of the parks and have picnics and stuff like that," said Scargill.

"Just going out, going to the park, going swimming, that kind of thing," added Jacquart.

For more information on S.A.D., click here.

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