The onslaught of brutal weather battering certain parts of the nation over the past few weeks is beginning to take a toll on the health and well-being of some residents living through it, CBS Atlanta reports.
From Texas to the Carolinas to Atlanta, the roads were paved with ice and scores were left without power as a wintry mix hit Wednesday. The Mid-Atlantic region was also expected to be socked by the storm and up to a foot of snow could fall in some areas, the report says.
The harsh winter storms may be causing some people to develop what is known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a form of depression or mental illness that develops during the winter months and is caused by a combination of cold temperatures, precipitation, and shorter days.
Dr. Norman Rosenthal, the clinical psychiatrist who first described the condition and writes about it in the book, “Winter Blues,” told CBS Atlanta that he has “seen a lot of [seasonal affective disorder] this season.”
“There has been a tremendous amount of it around, even in people who think they’ve got it under control,” he told CBS.
Symptoms include a change in appetite, especially cravings for sweet or starchy foods; weight gain; a drop in energy level; fatigue; and a tendency to oversleep, according to a report at the American Academy of Family Physicians.
About 4 to 6 percent of people may have winter depression, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians. Another 10 to 20 percent may have mild SAD. SAD is four times more common in women than in men. Although some children and teenagers get SAD, it usually doesn’t start in people younger than age 20.
It is unclear just how many African Americans suffer from winter depression because many do not seek mental health treatment in the first place. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says that only about 30 percent of African Americans who have been diagnosed with a mental illness seek counseling and only one in three who need psychiatric care receive it.
Another mental health expert, Laura Miller, a licensed clinical social worker in New York, told CBS that seasonal changes can take a toll person’s mental health.
“I have noticed that a number of my patients have been significantly impacted by the season changes and specifically the increase in the number of hours of darkness. This seems to happen every year around the time when fall flows in to winter,” she told CBS.
But Miller also told CBS “that the cases she has seen in her practice have not been noticeably more severe than they have in other years, but added that ‘it is hard to tell since patients usually have other factors that contribute to mood shifts, even if those other factors are not the primary roots or triggers.’”
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
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5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
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6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
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7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
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8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
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9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
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10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
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11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
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12. Late nights mornings
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13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
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14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
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15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
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16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
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17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
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18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
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19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
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20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
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21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
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22. Claudia Jordan: ....
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23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
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24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
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25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
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