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Be Cognizant Of Holiday Blues

For most people, the holiday season (Halloween through New Year) is a time of happiness and warmth.  The family/work gatherings, family traditions and celebrations are embraced and beloved.  However, for a number of people the holiday season is accompanied by feelings of sadness, anxiety, loneliness, painful reflection and depression.  These symptoms are often referred to as the “Holiday Blues”.

With so many fun events occurring, why do people manifest signs/symptoms of the “Holiday Blues”?  Most often, the Holiday Blues are seen in people with a prior history of depression and/or other mood disorders.  For people that have lost loved one due to illness/old age, have gone through painful divorces or other relationship dissolutions and/or have had children/grandchildren relocate to distant areas, the holiday season is a painful reminder of what “once was”.

The symptoms of the Holiday Blues will include many seen in general depressive episodes: Sadness, crying spells, withdrawal from friends/loved ones, not participating in activities that used to bring happiness and not finding happiness in the people/activities that used to elicit lots of joy.

The first step in addressing the Holiday Blues is the recognition that it is present.  Then, a visit to your doctor to discuss treatment options is a good idea.  Often, neurotransmitter imbalances are contributing to the situation, and there are medications that may be of help.  Medical Cannabis also is showing lots of promise as a more natural treatment for mood disorders.

If you notice any of your friends or relatives exhibiting symptoms of the Holiday Blues, do not feel awkward about addressing your concerns with your friend/loved one.  That person may not be aware of what is transpiring as his/her mood is spiraling downward.

One of the more poignant movie scenes showing the Holiday Blues was in the flick “Sleepless In Seattle” starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.  Hank’s character is a guy that recently lost his wife and he is now raising a small boy on his own.  With his child asleep on New Year’s eve, Hanks is sleeping alone on his couch and has a dream about his deceased wife visiting him, only to awake to a dark house with the TV showing New Years fireworks.

Enjoy a clip from the movie!  

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