Southwest Austin and Blanco Acupuncture

Seasonal Affective Disorder


It’s raining in Austin. Yesterday I spent the whole day in doors not wanting to venture out. It was a nice day of reading and catching up with friends back in California. I’ll be honest. I miss the sun and warmth. Of course, I welcome the rain because that means the green belt will be flowing in the spring. So I say bring on the rain.

Let me ask you this? How many of you feel different as the weather shifts? I certainly do. I feel more introverted and reflective. I prefer to stay home because I have less energy. Sleeping is a good time. I eat more and gain weight.

I did a quick search and found the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) on mayoclinic. Here is the list:

  • Irritability
  • Tiredness or low energy
  • Problems getting along with other people
  • Hypersensitivity to rejection
  • Heavy, “leaden” feeling in the arms or legs
  • Oversleeping
  • Appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates
  • Weight gain

In the Classical text the Neijing (The Yellow Emperor) we learn that most of the symptoms of SAD are normal ways to be and feel  in the winter. Before explaining further I want to mention that anti-depressants, such as Wellbutrin,  are potentially prescribed for Seasonal Affective Disorder. unknown-1The common side effects for Wellbutrin are:  insomnia, nausea, pharyngitis, weight loss, constipation, dizziness, headache, and xerostomia (dry mouth).

This is worrisome for me. I’d hate to see anyone be put on anti-depressants for SAD. It may be important to have a pyschological evaluation from your physician, but consider acupuncture as a first stop to shifting the energy. I’ve seen patients shift to being more calm and peaceful after a treatment. As an acupuncturist I would never use the term Seasonal Affective Disorder. For us we are looking where your Qi is stuck and stagnant. Our job is to move that Qi so the body can restore itself back to Yin Yang balance.

I’m curious…. who out there feels they have SAD and feels it is unmanageable. Write me. I’d love to post the conversation to help others. 

Always remember…we are a part of nature!



We cannot separate ourselves from the outside. Our job as a human being is to mimmic what nature does.  Nature goes interior and so should we. In the States we don’t like to slow down and especially gain weight, but it is an appropriate time to do so.

Make an appointment if you feel you have Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Aside from acupuncture I offer counsel on diet and lifestyle. Maybe you need to start a meditation practice. Perhaps an herbal formula to help with feels of irritability and depression. A session on a heated biomat will be peaceful and calming. There is nothing I enjoy greater than giving that gift so that you can go back and give to your community!

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