Understanding and Combating S.A.D.

9 Dec
Know the signs.

Know the signs.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), commonly called ‘Winter Blues’, is a type of depression which most commonly manifests itself during the fall and winter months. Understanding the causes and signs of SAD is important to avoiding falling into depression during the cold winter months ahead.


Sufferers of Seasonal Affective Disorder may experience weight gain, loss of energy, and the general feeling of hopelessness. Some other symptoms may include:

  • Collecting and storing nuts
  • Feeling a slight chill
  • Being as depressed as you are the rest of the year but blaming it on the winter
  • Listening to Elliott Smith


Due to the reduction of daylight hours and sunlight, alterations in circadian rhythms and seratonin levels may be triggers of depression. Other specific causes may include:

  • Cold weather is a reminder of the impending Ice Age
  • Shorter days, meaning less time to pursue an ultimately meaningless existence
  • Evanston is a windy shithole
  • Once groundhogs go into hibernation what does anyone really have to live for, anyway
  • Harsh weather means you have to cover your bare calves, your only redeeming feature
  • Yearly 5º temperature decrease as a result of Green Cup’s reduction of greenhouse gas emissions


The steps to treating Seasonal Affective Depression are often easier and simpler than many think. To keep from falling into the ‘Winter Blues’, try any of the following effective treatments.

  • Put on a sweater
  • Maintain firm eye contact with the Sun at least once a day
  • Simulate summer by staying inside all day and complaining about how much you miss Northwestern
  • Consider rescheduling your classes for day time
  • Evolve past photosynthesis, gain a majority of your nutrients from food
  • Simulate dawn by turning on your light in the morning and slowly opening your eyes
  • Sacrifice the tribe’s most valued elephant seal to Höðr, Norse god of winter
  • Get plenty of exercising by rolling back and forth in your bed
  • Take care of yourself, Northwestern

2 Responses to “Understanding and Combating S.A.D.”

  1. Samantha December 9, 2013 at 4:30 pm #

    Seasonal affective disorder treatment is NOT something to joke about. SAD can be effectively treated with light therapy, psychotherapy, and medications. SAD is a real disorder related to weather patterns that affects roughly 5% of the population, so please know that “stop being a bitch, put on a sweater” is an inaccurate and potentially damaging “joke” and misunderstanding of SAD. CAPS and other therapists in the area have great resources for helping individuals with SAD and other issues individuals may struggle with this winter.

    Sherman Ave – given your newfound interest in mental health, I would much appreciate some actual resources/things individuals can do to get help beneath this article (rather than just making prevention for a serious mental illness into a joke).

  2. Bailey December 11, 2013 at 11:04 pm #

    You’re right, due to the prestigious, and pointed journalism that is characteristic of this site it’s highly unprofessional of them to make such a joke of such serious issues. When looking at other important issues such as gay rights, race relations, and halloween costumes and their stances on such issues, this article is well below their normal professionalism.

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