Friday, February 10, 2006

winter depression

nope - i'm not suffering from winter depression (this is singapore, remember?).

i was flipping through the chinese newspapers last sunday, and chanced upon a full-page article on "winter depression", a term i'd previously unheard/ unread of. it was an interesting read, especially for "tropical-beings" like us, who would never really understand how winter seasons/the cloudy skies/ lack of sunshine (source of energy) could cause damage to a person's well-being and emotional health.

read up
a little more on the topic online tonight, the proper term being "seasonal affective disorder" (SAD syndrome), even the term sounds real s-a-d to me. the article stated that women are 3 times more likely to suffer SAD than men. SAD patients are very sensitive to light (or the lack of it)... typically experience depression, oversleeping (yet forever feeling lethargic), and food craving for carbohydrates. even though i've never experienced winter before, i can almost imagine that kind of blue-ish low feeling the 24/7 "sunlessness" can cause. not forgetting the day-to-day hassle of travelling in the snow, heavy traffic jams caused by roadblocks & accidents, minimal outdoor activities (no swimming, no al fresco dining by candlelight, no t-shirt + miniskirt outfit).....

i showed my brother the newspaper article, and you know what he said?
"you mean to say that people in the antartica suffer from depression all the time?" hmm... i sure don't have an answer for that... some food for thoughts.

other links on SAD: (i) (ii) bbc (iii) webmd

ps: and yes, i still love the romanticised idea of a white christmas, sipping hot tea by the window, watching snow fall peacefully to the sounds of carols..... :)

1 comment:

carolyn said...

Oh yes, winter can be very depressing. I was so depressed when I first went to Vancouver after 4 seasons Ontario. For my 1st semester in Vancouver, it rained virtually non-stop. I was not used to the unrelentless drizzle - basically it was drizzling when I woke up, go to school, in school, back from school, in bed, and the next morning. It never stopped!!!

And Vancouver recently almost broke the record (short of 1 day) of raining non stop for 27 days (I believe since the record was 28 days in Jan 1953).

And you are right, the jackets and long sleeved tops and bottoms one have to wear in winter, wrapped up like "bak zhang" (dumpling) - so unflattering. Hehe. But one can be very fair because of that too :p