Staying Well as the Seasons Change

It’s that time of year, when we’re starting to have fewer sunny days and we begin preparing for the cooler seasons ahead.

As summer is drawing to a close and the seasons begin to change, we often find ourselves trying to keep up our social and work schedule from the warmer months. Scientific research has indicated that our physical and mental health can be affected by the decreasing temperatures and an increasing time spent indoors as we transition out of summer.

As such it’s important for us to prepare our minds and bodies for the inevitable change in weather. That’s why we’ve covered these 3 common issues that may affect your wellness as the weather begins to cool.

Dehydration –

We don’t often associate cold-weather with dehydration as the body doesn’t get as hot and sweat evaporates quicker in the cold air, this often tricks us into thinking that we aren’t losing fluids as rapidly as we actually are.

Even though your body is fooled into thinking it’s properly hydrated, it’s important to keep a close eye on your fluid intake. Now, you won’t feel like you’re thirsty and voluntarily taking another drink of water will begin to feel like a chore rather than a necessity. Instead of forcing your next drink down, try incorporating foods with a high water volume – such as, lettuce, celery and cucumbers, to help maintain your hydration throughout the day.

Here’s a more comprehensive list of alternatives.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) –

Typically experienced at certain times of the year (most often in autumn and winter) Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is as the name implies, a type of ‘seasonal’ depression. People with SAD tend to exhibit symptoms of depression (autumn and winter) or mania (summer and spring) at roughly the same time each year.

Although there is no clear cause of SAD, the most common theory is due to the changes to the body’s circadian rhythms, due to a natural decrease in melatonin and serotonin at particular times of the year (most often autumn and winter).

While there are many treatments available, getting outside as much as possible and exercising regularly can help to lift your mood and assist with reducing any symptoms of SAD. Organising group exercises is another great way to help relieve symptoms of SAD and get outdoors all while maintaining your social life.

Sleep –

It’s about to get colder outside and contrary to popular belief, all those extra hours cuddled under the duvet in the comfort of your bed may not be helping you. Sticking to a regular sleep schedule to get your recommended 7 to 8 hours a night is important, especially as we transition into a new season.

To avoid knocking your sleep cycle out of whack, it’s important to maintain a consistent bedtime and rise time while logging the recommended amount of sleep each night.

Now, we know that jumping out of bed on a cold Saturday morning can be difficult, especially when you’re all warm and comfortable. However, making sure that you’re up and about will help prevent the onset of SAD, or the feeling of dread when returning to work each Monday.

Next week we will be sitting down with Antony from Myogen to cover the topics of postural positioning, self-massage and mobility for our Ask an Expert edition, where we will ask the questions you submit.

As always, please let me know if there are any particular topics you would love us to look into or you have any queries or concerns.

You can call me on 03 9963 4804 or email me directly.

Oliver Szklarz

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