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Lack of sunshine can lead to symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – According to Eric Boldt, the Warning Coordination Meteorologist from the National Weather Service, said "We're just a few days away from the all time record for the coldest number of days below 70 degrees."

Months of gray skies and unseasonably cool conditions left Central Coasters longing for the "sunny and nice" weather they're used to.

Boldt added, "This year we started off getting pretty cloudy by the middle of May and it didn't really go away. We didn't have very many sunny days."

Prolonged lack of sunshine, along with a Vitamin D deficiency, can be detrimental to one's mental health. It can even lead to feeling symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder, commonly known as SAD. It's a form of depression that describes the relationship between weather and mood.

Jennifer Wilson, who was visiting Santa Barbara from Bakersfield agreed. She said, "Typically when its gray and cloudy or rainy outside, yeah I feel like I'm a little more down. You're not as excited to be out and about."

It's important to know the symptoms of SAD so you're able to identify it within yourself and those around you.

Suzanne Grimmesey, the PIO of Santa Barbara County Department of Behavioral Wellness described the symptoms as being, "feeling tired, sluggish, fatigued, lack of energy, feeling irritated, anxious, depressed, feeling more of a sense of wanting to hibernate or isolate from others."

Forms of light therapy, getting outside, and leaning on loved ones is crucial when experiencing symptoms of SAD.

Grimmesey suggests you to, "Carve out time to get out and move your body and do what exercise makes you feel good even if you may not feel like it. To be intentional about creating schedules, routines in your day."

While summer had a delayed start this year, near normal conditions are in the forecast.

Boldt said, "Now looks like in our longer term computer models, looks like we're gonna start to get back more into a typical summer pattern, which is high pressure over the interior South West."

Article Topic Follows: Be Mindful
Be Mindful
Santa Barbara
Seasonal Affective Disorder

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Christa Kurkjian


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