Winter Blues: Everything You Need to Know to Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder

By Norman E. Rosenthal | Go to book overview

FOUR

What Causes SAD?
While the other chapters in this section are of practical use, this chapter is intended for the curious, those who are not satisfied with knowing how to diagnose and treat SAD but who want to know more. Why do some people get SAD while others don't? Why are the symptoms of SAD worse at certain times than at others? And how might the various treatments outlined in this book work their seemingly magical effects? If you're seeking answers to these questions, read on.There are three keys to the development of depression in SAD:
Inherent vulnerability
Environment, specifically light deprivation
Stress

Inherent Vulnerability

Although SAD affects all types of people, women are most vulnerable, and the twenties through the forties seem to be prime time for this problem. SAD runs in families, and most patients have at least one close relative with a history of depression (often SAD). An example of familial transmission is described by a woman in Tennessee who has had a long

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