Seasonal depression affects millions of Canadians every year, including teens. It can be challenging to spot Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) as it is often confused with depression or other mental health conditions. However, there are some crucial signs of seasonal depression. If your teen is struggling, reach out to Venture Academy at 855.281.5813 today.
Signs of Seasonal Depression
Knowing the signs of SAD can help you and your teen access the right treatment quickly. For instance, four signs of seasonal depression in teens are outlined below.
1. Sadness or Despair
The main symptom of seasonal depression is easily confused with regular depression — feelings of overwhelming sadness or despair. For instance, your teen might feel like everything is hopeless or pointless, which usually comes with lethargy and fatigue. The critical element to SAD is that symptoms seem to ease off during the warmer months.
2. Cravings for Sweet or Starchy Food
As the lethargy and sluggishness kick in, your teen might respond by desiring more sugary or starchy foods. Seasonal depression in teens, in particular, causes junk food cravings, but this will only make the problem worse. Naturally, this leads to weight gain, which is unhelpful when dealing with any medical problem.
3. Little or No Interest in Former Hobbies or Friends
Teens with SAD tend to withdraw from friends and family and stop attending activities they used to love. They may lack the energy or motivation to go, or it might be that they no longer feel interested in anything. Nevertheless, a combination of low energy and low motivation simultaneously is common.
4. Increased Sleepiness or Oversleeping
If your teen spends more time in bed during the winter months, this could be a sign of seasonal depression. They may also appear to be sleepier during the day and yawn a lot more. Falling asleep in class could be another sign of seasonal depression in teens.
Some of the other signs of seasonal depression include:
- Poor concentration
- Low self-esteem
- Grades dropping
- Becoming more withdrawn and less sociable
What To Do About Seasonal Depression In Teens
Seasonal depression in teens can seem like an insurmountable mountain, but you can do some simple things to ease some of the symptoms.
For instance, ensuring your teen has a healthy amount of natural sunlight is paramount to easing SAD symptoms. If natural sunlight proves hard to come by, daylight lamps are available. Doctors recommend an average of 20 minutes a day outside or sitting in front of a daylight lamp.
Despite the lethargy and the food cravings, a healthy diet with plenty of fresh air and exercise will work wonders for your teen during the winter months. Try taking up a new, outdoor-based hobby as a family.
Holistic therapies, medications, and traditional therapy may also help.
Seasonal Depression and Venture Academy
Venture Academy offers a wide range of treatment programs for troubled teens across Canada. Some of the programs we offer include:
- Behavioural treatment program
- Drug and alcohol treatment program
- Electronic addiction treatment program
- Schools and educational programs
- 30-day assessment and intervention
At Venture Academy, we focus on the individual as a whole person. We treat the body, the mind, and the spirit, and we value your teen’s education. While your teen is with us, they will have access to specially trained teachers and all the academics they would otherwise be doing in school.
With facilities in Ontario, Alberta, and British Columbia, there is a Venture Academy near you.
Seasonal depression in teens can be challenging to overcome, but you and your teen will make it through with our support. If you’d like to talk to a friendly professional about seasonal depression, call Venture Academy at 855.281.5813.