It is coming to that time of year again where the colder days and darker evenings are slowly creeping in and making their appearance for which this makes us want to stay in our homes longer. It is natural that we don’t like being outdoors when its dark and we want to shelter at home in the warmth and the feeling of being safe, but sometimes if we get too comfortable and do this on a daily basis we can lose our motivation and mental fatigue to then this could leave us with SAD syndrome. Seasonal Affect Disorder is a type of depression that you can experience during seasonal times which leaves you with low mood swings and lack of determination and enthusiasm.
What is SAD Syndrome?
SAD known as ‘Winter Depression’ that occurs during the last seasons of the year due to lack of vitamin D. The main theory is that a lack of sunlight might stop a part of the brain called the hypothalamus working properly, which may affect the:
production of melatonin – melatonin is a hormone that makes you feel sleepy; in people with SAD, the body may produce it in higher than normal levels.
production of serotonin – serotonin is a hormone that affects your mood, appetite and sleep; a lack of sunlight may lead to lower serotonin levels, which is linked to feelings of depression.
body’s internal clock (circadian rhythm) – your body uses sunlight to time various important functions, such as when you wake up, so lower light levels during the winter may disrupt your body clock and lead to symptoms of SAD.
It’s also possible that some people are more vulnerable to SAD as a result of their genes as some cases appear to run in families. For more information about SAD Syndrome visit – https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/conditions/seasonal-affective-disorder-sad/overview/
Although there are many strategies to overcome SAD syndrome such as gaining a well-balanced diet, outstanding sleep pattern and plenty of exercise and sunlight another tactic is also practicing something creative for example knitting or sewing is effective because it occupies your brain. More people have been practicing knitting and even celebrities such as To Daley, Amanda Seyfried and many more due to their struggles with anxiety or any other forms of mental health. In one article Tom stated that knitting helped him to feel calm during the Tokyo Olympics as it took his mind away from the pressure and stress. You can practice knitting anywhere it doesn’t have to be in your own home, for example you can do it anywhere in park, cafes, transport where ever you are comfortable.
A beginner and feeling nervous about starting? There are plenty of class/courses for the public but if you are attempting to learn knitting independently in your own space then looking up tutorials is the best tactic – for example YouTube is a great example with many experts that can show you different techniques and the best thing is you can go and learn in your own pace!
A Popular YouTuber that teaches knitting for beginners is JR Knits –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_R1UDsNOMk&t=2s
For our Craft kits or our candles to help you relax during the darker evening please feel free to visit our shop – https://justforwomen.org.uk/our-shop/
6 surprising health benefits form knitting
- Knitting reduces stress, anxiety and depression.
- Knitting can keep Alzheimer’s at bay by keeping you mind active and focus this can also reduce the risks of dementia.
- It has the same benefits of meditation – once you understand what your doing knitting be very soothing and relaxing, rhythmic and repetitive motion can zone out your mind but you use your muscle memory to complete the task.
- It helps improve you motor function – Knitting stimulates the whole brain and helps people with diseases like Parkinson’s improve their motor functions. It both helps improve their fine motor skills and distracts from other painful symptoms.
- It prevents arthritis and tendinitis – Although you want to keep you brain healthy and active it is the same that you want your joints and muscles healthy by using your fingers to builds up their cartilage then making them stronger instead of wearing it down.
- Most importantly it gives you a sense of drive! – not many people are confident when it comes to getting creative but after learning, trying, overcome and completing a task you feel around and upbuild.
Types of work you can create from knitting