Be Happy & Defeat the Dark with This Special Spa Treatment
23 November 2018
Winter is coming.
To quote the eloquent Jon Snow from Game of Thrones. We’re lucky our winter will only last three months, rather than years. We don’t have to deal with dragons either. Nevertheless, as darkness continues to pool at the end of our days, our bodies and minds slow down.
We may not hibernate like bears and hedgehogs, but winter still affects us. We yawn, stretch, shiver and sniffle our way through.
Most of us have gloomy days in winter, when the sky is like wet slate and the sun dips behind the horizon in late afternoon. Time for some fluffy socks, a tipple and a crackling fire. Sorted.
Some of us, unfortunately, have a much harder time – and it takes more than fire to fix.
What is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?
Those who suffer from SAD may be fine during spring, summer and even much of autumn. But as the days shorten, a type of major depressive disorder sets in. It’s a seasonal depression.
How does depression differ from just “feeling blue”? We all get down sometimes, for various reasons – although it doesn’t last. We’re able to find relief laughing with our friends or distract ourselves with hobbies.
With depression, it’s not a feeling. It’s a chemical imbalance in the brain and impacts all aspects of life. Symptoms include body aches, digestive issues, insomnia, constant fatigue, feelings of worthlessness and ultimately thoughts of suicide. Relief from it isn’t achievable without professional help.
Honestly, it’s quite terrible.
What Causes Seasonal Affective Disorder?
It’s thought that the underlying cause of SAD is related to a lack of sunlight. We’re diurnal creatures, ruled by the sun. When it’s dark we want to sleep.
For many species winter is a time where food is scarce and surviving the cold is a battle. We’ve conquered this struggle, but our prehistoric need to reduce our calorie intake and “survive” still exists.
So, in winter it’s 100% natural for us to feel like curling up in ball sometimes.
Why don't we all get depressed though? There are different theories as to why people suffer from SAD. One of which could be to do with being unable to synthesise serotonin properly, a feel-good chemical.
Another, is that SAD may be related to the production of the sleep chemical, melatonin, which is produced in darkness and affects our biological clocks (circadian rhythms).
It’s likely to be a mixture of many different factors. Suffice to say, it can’t be helped.
Lack of Sunlight is Unhealthy For All
Whether or not we experience SAD, none of us are immune to the health problems associated with a lack of sunlight.
The main problems involve a lack of vitamin D. Otherwise known as the “sunshine vitamin”, vitamin D is created when sunshine touches our skin.
It’s important for many reasons, but vitamin D is especially vital in helping our bodies absorb calcium and phosphorus. Plus, it facilitates a normal immune system.
Calcium and phosphorus are crucial for healthy bones, and a vitamin D deficiency causes bones to become weak and soft. It’s also thought that vitamin D could play a role in preventing heart disease. Basically, we really need it.
Ever wondered why we seem to catch colds during winter? Most of our vitamin D is created during spring and summer. This isn’t meant to make winter seem like an unnatural season that rids us of our health. The effects of a seasonal lack of light vary from person to person.
Vitamin D is Also Found in Food
We are what we eat.
And vitamin D is found in the following foods –
- Oily fish
- Red meats
- Egg yolk
- Fortified products
If your diet isn’t up to scratch in the vitamin D department, when it comes to winter, you’ll notice it more than the next person.
Best get catching some shrimp. OR...
Simple Way to Top Up Your Vitamin D
Go to the beach and sunbathe.
You’re thinking – this means booking a holiday in a hot country. Not so (or you don’t have to).
Does it mean stripping down on a British beach? No again. Only appealing to a hardcore few this time of year. What then?
Defeat the Dark at Ye Olde Bell’s Spa
Imagine a pure sandy beach in the south of France. Imagine sunny skies and crystal seas. Now imagine shrinking that down into a relaxation room. Sound good?
That blissful feeling of drifting off to sleep, on a summer beach with the gentle rush of the sea and distant call of sea birds is what the Sabbia Med is all about. You’ll enjoy a day on the beach, with a dawn till dusk cycle.
What’s great, is there’s no risk of sunburn either. The Sabbia Med operates with UV lamps, able to give you a healthy dose of vitamin D, without causing you to lobster.
Vitamin D and a moment to unwind properly is something we all need and those suffering from SAD even more so.
One of the main treatments for SAD is light therapy – which genuinely makes the Sabbia Med a way to help reduce seasonal depression.
This is just one of many unique and beneficial spa treatments at Ye Olde Bell’s new multi-million-pound spa complex.