Mercy House Call: Shorter winter days could trigger depression - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Mercy House Call: Shorter winter days could trigger depression

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By Brad Harvey - bio | email | Facebook

Posted by Nick Bade - email

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - As the days get shorter, and the weather gets cooler, many people struggle to adjust.  Millions of Americans suffer from a condition known as seasonal affective disorder. 

Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is a depression that occurs on a regular basis, and comes and goes at a regular time each year.

Dr. Catherine Carrigan, says the condition "could be related to changes in the melatonin system in the body, changes in the circadian rhythm" or "could also be because of shortened daylight"

Dr. Carrigan says one treatment for seasonal affective disorder is the use of a light therapy lamp.  During light therapy the patient sits in front of the lamp for 15 to 30 minutes a day.

If light therapy is not effective, Dr Carrigan says "there are medications that are effective for both depression and seasonal affective disorder."

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