The Truth About Montana's Seasonal Affective Disorder

We like to joke in Montana about how all these new transplants won't last one winter in our harsh winters.

Truth be told, these long, cold, and dark winter nights are hard on long-time Montana residents as well.

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One of the hardest parts of winter is the lack of sunlight we get, which also means a lack of vitamin D.

That lack of vitamin D can wreak havoc on your mood and can lead to what is known as Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD for short.

With over 700,000 searches each year for Seasonal Affective Disorder, this is a pretty serious issue that plenty of Americans and Montanans are dealing with.

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Woman with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
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5 Tips On How To Deal With Seasonal Affective Disorder In Montana

The website Mattress Next Day has come up with this 5 ways to help you improve your mood during these trying months:

  1. Get some light therapy
    Light Boxes are highly recommended by the Mayo Clinic to help mimic sunlight and it doesn't take long either. Just a couple hours a day can be enough to alter your mood
  2. Exercise
    Easier said than done for sure, but by getting up and moving, you get endorphins running through your body which can help offset SAD.
  3. Eat Healthy
    Another practice what your preach bit of advice. It can be hard to eat healthy, what with all the holiday treats everywhere, but a good balance of food can go a long way to making you feel better.
  4. Get Outside
    While the winters can be long and cold, there are days that the sun does shine and the temps aren't always below 0. On those days take advantage and get outside to soak in some natural sunlight, any amount helps reduce feeling SAD.
  5. Set A Routine
    They say it takes 2 weeks to form a habit, so if you combine the previous 4 items on the list, and do it daily, in just half a month you'll start to feel improvement.

LOOK: Where Does Every State Rank For Seasonal Affective Disorder Vulnerability

MattressNextDay has put their well-rested minds to good use, gathering data on what's keeping people from resting as they deal with depression-like symptoms. Dreary and sunless days, rain, and low temperatures are all contributors to seasonal affective disorder. Discover which state is most likely to be impacted by S.A.D. as we count down from 50 to #1.

Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

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