The start of a new year usually comes with cold weather. Often, we dread winter because of the chilly air and shortened days. It is also a time that can cause sadness and depression.
Those who suffer from substance abuse or those who are in recovery tend to have a harder time during winter. In addition, SAD is a serious disorder that can affect anyone. Seasonal Affective Disorder is a condition that causes severe depression and sadness, particularly in the fall and winter months. If depression has lead you to addiction, call Legacy Freedom. We offer affordable drug and alcohol treatment center in Asheville NC.
The Symptoms of SAD
Symptoms of SAD include the following, according to mayoclinic.com:
- SAD is most common among females, people living far from the equator and families who have a genetic history of the disorder.
- Though less common, some people experience SAD in the spring and summer months when sunlight increases.
- Spring and summer SAD symptoms include agitation, irritability, insomnia and a diminished appetite.
- Common symptoms include depression, anxiety, lethargy, oversleeping, appetite changes and concentration problems.
- Related-risks associated with SAD include social withdrawal, work/school difficulties, substance abuse and suicidal thoughts.
It might be easy to focus on the negative aspects of winter, especially when it comes to addiction related risks. Extreme cold weather limits transportation. It's possible that this could cause further problems for drug or alcohol overdoses.
Even more, those who unfortunately choose to drive while intoxicated might have even more difficulty due to snow and rain during winter. Also, because winter weather harbors illnesses, those who are already compromising their health by addiction end up becoming even more sick. Below, you will find more cold weather issues that can come when addiction is a problem. For the best drug and alcohol treatment center in Asheville NC, call Legacy Freedom.
- Cold-weather alcoholic beverages are popular this time of year. It might be a craving those in recovery have.
- Anxiety caused by not being able to travel because of flooding or blizzards can increase the use of drugs or alcohol.
- Boredom is also an issue during cold weather months because it is hard to leave the house during this time of year.
- We are typically drained of energy during cold weather, and those who need an increase might be tempted to take drugs.
- It's important to remember the benefits of winter so that we do not dwell on the bad parts.
Do you suffer from SAD? If so, there are ways to rise above it and continue through winter without sadness or depression. Exercise is a great way to get motivated and happy this time of year. There's more to it than using exercise to lose weight, gain muscle or get healthy. It's great for mental health, as well.
Keep moving during the cold months. It's going to be difficult to get out there and jog or run a couple of miles a day, but if you get motivated to do so it will change your mood for the better. Don't let your exercise fall short because it's cold outside. Invest in a gym membership or purchase affordable equipment to have at home. These things will help keep you going without having to be outside. Even more, exercise can actually boost your immune system. That means those that continue to exercise during winter will be better able to fight off colds and flu.
You can also keep circulation moving during winter by walking or jogging. It's a great way to keep your heart in shape, as well.
Regular exercise during winter months will also increase your metabolism, causing you to maintain or lose weight. This is a great benefit and should be considered.
Believe it or not, there are several benefits to cold weather that you may not be aware of. These health benefits are great to keep in mind when you get down and out during the chilly months of winter.
Benefits of Cold Weather
Cold-weather leaves us wanting to stay indoors as much as possible. During this time, we end up spending a lot of quality time with our loved ones. Watching movies, cooking together, playing board games and other fun activities are the focus during this time of year. In the summertime, we want to be outside doing fun things and tend to isolate ourselves more than we realize. We don't set out to be loners, but taking a walk in warm weather, going for a drive or swimmng are things that can be done alone. It just so happens that during winter, we naturally crave spending time with others. It also leaves us wanting to contact friends and family that aren't within visiting distance. Talking on the phone increases during winter more than any other time of the year.
While we are braving the cold weather, going to school or work, grocery shopping or spending time outdoors, we end up with a greater respect for warm weather, especially spring time. We often take sunshine for granted. By the time winter is heading out, we crave sunshine and warmer weather. It gives us something to look forward to and be thankful for.
Arthritis and other inflammation of the body can bring us down and leave us feeling less than great. Did you know that cold-weather can actually be good for inflammation? It can reduce pain in inflamed parts of the body. This goes along with the idea of using an ice pack on a sprain or strained muscle. Athletes often use ice for muscle recovery. The next time you complain about cold weather or feel like you're getting depressed, feel thankful that you're not dealing with summer swelling that can occur due to hot weather.
We hope this information helps you get motivated to continue exercising and stay healthy during cold winter months. Don't let the shorter days and weather keep you down.
Sometimes, professional treatment or drug rehab is the only way to rise above addiction and SAD. Legacy Freedom offers tailored treatments that help the direct needs of each of our patients. Support structures are a vital part of all recovery ventures. Several of our therapies occur in a group setting, surrounding you with the support you need to get back on the right path. It’s important to consider getting help, especially during the turn of the season, when you aren’t sure how the weather might affect your recovery.
Looking for a Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center in Asheville NC in 2017?
If you, or someone you know, are suffering from a substance abuse problem, it's time to get help. While it’s easy to believe that you are alone in this struggle, that is the farthest thing from the truth. There are numerous people dealing with addiction in the world.
Regardless of how bad drug or alcohol use has become, help is always available in 2017. Contact Legacy Freedom of Asheville, the best drug and alcohol treatment center in Asheville NC. We are here to help you get back on track to a healthier, happier life in the new year.