Thursday, 25 February 2010

Can't wait for Spring

It feels like it's been a long, long winter!

'B' suffers from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and the wintery months usually affect her really badly. She sleeps ALL the time, eats for England, doesn't want to to go anywhere, do anything and probably the worst bit (for a child and come to that a Mum too), she gets horribly depressed. Or should I say, USED to.

Since we pulled her out of school we have noticed massive changes in 'B', the obssessive compulsive behaviour that accompanied her SID has virtually disappeared and it looks like the SAD has significantly improved too.

This year she has required no medication, she
was taking herbal medicine when she felt she needed it! She hasn't been depressed although she is tiring of Winter now (aren't we all?). She is still eating for England, but that's no bad thing, she has always struggled to put weight on and I now feel she is looking a much healthier size.

She still sleeps alot but seeing as she doesn't have to get up at any particular time, she can sleep when she needs it. We've found that she has fallen into a natural rhythm, going to bed really really late and getting up late. As she doesn't have to go to school and I can pretty much work my own hours, this is working for both of us.

We haven't been out much but in the last few weeks she has wanted to go outside just for a little bit every day. Getting enough sunlight is important for SAD sufferers, boosts the brain chemicals. Sunlight is believed to play a big part in the brain's production of key hormones (seratonin and melatonin).

This is a huge turnaround for us all. Pulling her out of school has inadvertently eased the SAD. How? I think because she has been able to live by her own natural rhythm! It's a bit like hibernating, you know? Animals slow their metabolisms down, they store food, the sleep much longer than any other time of the year. SAD always seemed to me like a kind of hybernation. Not all animals hibernate, most don't, but why can't humans be the same? Some just need to hibernate.

Spring is now in sight and we are looking forward to getting out and about.

I have started to change the lightbulbs in our house, it won't be long before we have no choice in the UK. In the last year I have been trying these energy-saving bulbs. What concerns me, amongst other things that I won't go into here, is the effect it will have on 'B'. We only have lights on in the house when we need them, with the traditional bulb you turn it on and you instantly have light. With these new bulbs you have to wait and wait and wait until they build up enough light, after a few months you'll notice that they don't seem anywhere as bright either. We pretty much used 40W bulbs but to kick out the same amount of light with these new ones, it looks like we are going to have to use a much higher equivalent (what would equate to the old 100W bulbs) and keep them on pretty much all night. Energy-saving?

Why am I concerned about the effect on 'B'? The amount of light these bulbs kick out is not enough! She has a sdecial daylight bulb in her room, along with her SAD lightbox. Light is important, if the whole house is dim it stands to reason it will have a direct effect on her. I've googled this and it seems that no-one has taken this into account. The decision has been made and that's that! This IS going to have a huge impact on SAD sufferers.

I'm not a pessimist by any means but the future doesn't look bright (not with energy saving lightbulbs anyway) LOL! I guess I'm going to have to stockpile. Just how many lightbulbs can you get in a cupboard under the stairs, I guess I'll have to find out!

OK, time to get off my soapbox!
Till next time
'B's Mum