If you live in an area that experiences a long winter, it can feel like it lasts forever. The cold and dark nights and cloud-covered days can make many people feel depressed and uneasy. That’s why it’s common for the winter weather to take a toll on our physical and mental health. Fortunately, spring is just around the corner and the transition between these two seasons can help us stay more positive and shed those anxious feelings. The sudden increase in sunlight alone can help to boost our overall mood through a number of mechanisms including our circadian rhythm, serotonin, and vitamin D levels. Learn more about the effect of spring on your mental health and how it can benefit you.
We Become More Active and Lively
As humans, we are programmed to rest and sleep when it’s dark out, which is why during the winter, we produce more melatonin – the sleep hormone. However, as we experience more light come springtime, our pineal gland tells our brain to slow down the production of melatonin and increase the production of serotonin. Serotonin is the hormone that stimulates happiness and increases our overall mood. The change in these hormones makes us feel more active and livelier.
We Feel More Relaxed and Comfortable
The warmer spring weather allows us to get back outside in nature. Our skin uses the sunlight to produce more vitamin D which has vital functions for good health and mental wellbeing. The temperature outside also makes us feel more comfortable which impacts our emotions. Having access to nature and more comfortable temperatures helps people to feel more relaxed, and it increases our feel-good hormones.
We Feel Less Depressed
Did you know that depression rates rise during fall and winter, and drop in the spring and summer? Getting more light exposure in the springtime can help to increase your endorphin levels which has a mood-boosting effect as well.Although most of us start to feel much better come springtime, some of us still suffer from seasonal depression. If you’re struggling to feel like your normal self this year, it might be time to talk to a counsellor. Our team at Ottawa Counselling understands exactly what you are going through and can offer advice and support to improve your situation. Learn more about our services and what we can do for you today, call us to set up a consultation.