By Maria Burke, RN, Owner, Celtic Angels Home Health Care
Short days and miserable weather make it easy to get a case of the winter blues. So if you feel down this time of year, you’re not alone. Thankfully, there are things you can do to help. Here are five ways to combat the winter blues.
1. Get Some Light
Adding a little more light to your life can really help you feel better. So, soak up the sun’s rays in front of a window if it’s not too chilly. And consider using a light box for light therapy.
These bright boxes create much stronger light than would ordinarily be found in your home. So, try spending up to two hours a day sitting by a light box. It may really help you combat the winter blues.
Exercise is one of the best ways to boost your mood. That’s because your body naturally releases feel-good chemicals, called endorphins, when you exercise. And the best part is, exercise can be adapted to any physical challenges.
So if you’re able, take a walk or dance in your living room. Or if you have mobility challenges, try stretching or doing chair yoga. Ask your doctor if you’re unsure what type of exercise is best for you.
3. Add Some Cheer
Adding some cheer to your home or even yourself can help you fight the winter blues. So think about the things that make you feel better, and try to add a little more into your environment.
Do bright colors help? Try painting your wall, wearing bright nail polish, or choosing clothes in bright colors. Respond better to smells? Use scented wax warmers, oil diffusers, or plug-in air fresheners to add cheerful smells to your home.
4. Warm Up
Did you know that just being cold can give you the blues? It’s true! And seniors tend to get cold easily, so if you’re feeling blue, especially if you’re also chilly, turn the thermostat up a few degrees.
If finances are a concern, try heating just one room to a higher temperature and spend time there. You can also help yourself warm up by eating hot foods, like soup or chili, and by having warm drinks like coffee, tea, or cocoa.
5. Do What Makes You Feel Good
If you’re suffering from a case of the winter blues, turn to the things that comfort you and make you feel good. Do you like reading? Curl up with a good book and a cup of cocoa. Or maybe you have a favorite hobby, like crafting, baking, or watching sports.
Find the things that make you feel good and spend time doing them. It’s even better if you can share them with someone you love. So invite friends or family to watch a movie with you or share a meal. Alternatively, gift some cookies or crafts to a neighbor. You’ll put a smile on their face and yours!
Need a little help combating the winter blues? No problem! Celtic Angels can assist you with things like preparing warming meals, visiting your friends, going on outings, or just having great conversation! Learn more about the services we offer here.
Winter days can be dreary, but you can combat the winter blues. Give the above tips a try, and remember, if you feel overwhelmed by sadness, contact your doctor. You may be suffering from seasonal affective disorder, and your doctor can help.