Depression Counseling Shawnee OK
Mental Health Professional, Psychologist
Oklahoma City, OK
PostTraumatic Stress Disorder or Acute Trauma Reaction, Individual Psychotherapy, Mood Disorder (e.g., depression, manic-depressive disorder), Substance-Related Disorder (e.g., abuse or dependency involving drug/alcohol), Psychopharmacology
Adults (18-64 yrs.)
Adolescents (13-17 yrs.)
Doctoral Program: Alliant International University - Fresno
Credentialed Since: 1994-08-31
Rain, Rain, Go Away – 5 Ways to Battle the Blues
I am feeling downright soggy these days. Like many parts of the nation, we have had more than our fair share of rain this past month. Along with the rain come dark, gloomy days that really start to dampen you soul after a while. My daughter told me the other morning that it wasn’t time to get up because it was still dark outside (she also uses the opposite theory at bedtime.) No, it wasn’t still night, it was just raining again.
Our moods can be impacted greatly by the weather. I chose the location of my residency training not only by where there was a strong program, but also by where I might experience 300+ days of sunshine a year. I figured that if I was working long hours it would be critical for me to be in a place that would also charge my solar batteries. I found that sun and weather were powerful motivators.
Do you find you just want to crawl back in bed on gloomy days? It may be due to the sleep-related hormone, melatonin. The body produces more melatonin when our eyes detect darkness. But when our eyes detect light, our body makes more serotonin. Many of us have heard about the importance of good serotonin levels to keep us feeling happy.
A 2002 study done in Germany looked at the impact of ultraviolet light on mood. The group that was exposed to UVA twice a week for three weeks reported feeling more balanced, less nervous, and more strengthened than the other group. They also showed an increase in their serum serotonin level and a decrease in their serum melatonin level compared to baseline. The control group showed no change.
1. Find a creative outlet. Make a craft with your child, re-arrange a room, write a real handwritten letter (not email or text!), or visit with friends (set a ground rule that no one can complain about the weather.)
2. Listen to music. Pick something upbeat. Dance!
3. Exercise. Rainy days can be good days for using your Wii or find an exercise show on TV and imagine you are on that gorgeous beach exercising with the host.
4. Go outside, even when the weather isn’t great. Remember when you were a kid and you would put on boots and a raincoat and go puddle-jumping? We still need fresh air, even on rainy days.
5. Eat healthy food. Turkey, fish, chicken, nuts, eggs, and beans all contain good amounts of tryptophan which is a precursor to serotonin. Try to avoid the comfort foods that you crave on days like th...