As we enter November, Seasonal Affective Disorder shows itself once again. Seasonal Affective Disorder, also referred to as SAD, is the clinical term for seasonal depression. Today, we’ll be talking about what SAD is and how we can use powerful tools, including aromatherapy, to help ourselves persevere through it.
The symptoms of SAD line up with depression. Fatigue, depression, hopelessness, social withdrawal, mood swings, and general discontent are the symptoms most felt. However, these aren’t the only symptoms. Insomnia, lethargy, irritability, and even weight gain are all signs of SAD.
SAD strikes the same time every year, generally around November to January. While some people love the gray skies and chill of late autumn and winter, many others find it incredibly melancholy. A lack of sunlight is directly linked to SAD. If you feel depressed during these times, you aren’t alone. More than 3 million people, in the United States alone, are affected by SAD.
Healing with Aromatherapy
We know that aromatherapy has been used for thousands of years. For example, the Egyptians used Myrrh for embalming and preserving their deceased while preventing fungus and mold. The Catholic Church uses Frankincense to connect with our spirit more deeply and intimately, and they still do today.
Aromatherapy gives us tools to treat mild depression and SAD. Lemon balm (Melissa Officinalis) oil is going to be the most immediate tool available. Try adding eight drops to a room diffuser. For a stronger effect, try adding 3 or 4 drops to a tissue or towel and breathe deeply, like you are meditating. For a more physical approach, apply 1 drop of oil to your forehead and to the back of your neck while holding your forehead.
If you find lemon balm to not be to your liking, there are alternatives. Sweet orange helps boost your optimism and let go of sadness and negativity. Grapefruit can lighten your mood and help you let go of frustration. Try these in a room diffuser while meditating for the best results!
Meditation and aromatherapy are powerful tools in combating SAD. Never be afraid to talk to someone, especially a mental health professional. Letting go of the stigma of meditation, aromatherapy, and talk therapy is a first step in building a strong mental resilience.
Thank you for taking time to read this. SAD is a real problem that hits hard every year. If you want to know more about aromatherapy, please consider taking my course, How to Decode & Calm Your Emotions. In it, I talk about the science behind aromatherapy and how we can use it in our daily lives. Not only do I talk about depression and SAD, but I have material on anxiety, anger, and PTSD included as well. I also have a free podcast you can listen to. I bring on various guests and we discuss our lives, how we fight negativity, and all sorts of anecdotes on being happy.
Thank you so much for reading, and remember to stay mindful!