If this winter you are feeling blue, gaining weight and waking up tired, even though you might be sleeping more, you may have seasonal affective disorder. Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is a type of winter depression that affects an estimated half a million people every winter. It is caused by a biochemical imbalance due to the shortening of daylight hours and the lack of sunlight in winter.

Dr. Laura Shea, assistant professor of psychiatry at SIU School of Medicine, offers some tips for people who experience these feelings.

Shea comments

Dr. Shea says a blue feeling should last only a few weeks, but it could develop into a more serious condition if these symptoms continue. For serious depression, she recommends seeing a family doctor or mental health counselor for an evaluation and possible treatment.