Seasonal affective disorder
Terman, Michael New York Psychiatric Institute, Clinical Chronobiology Program, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, New York, New York.
Last reviewed:December 2018
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- Analysis of the syndrome
- Light therapy
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A syndrome of annually repeating depressive symptoms (usually including oversleeping, carbohydrate craving, and weight gain) related to changes in the season, with relapses usually occurring in late fall and winter. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), also termed winter depression, is a type of depression that follows a seasonal pattern. It was described initially by the National Institute of Mental Health in the United States in 1984. Researchers there and, soon after, at centers across the United States and Europe cataloged for the first time a syndrome of annually repeating depressive symptoms that were responsive to bright artificial light exposure (Fig. 1). See also: Affective disorders; Depression; Light
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