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Seasonal Depression (SAD) (cont.)

Seasonal Depression Causes

The exact causes of seasonal affective disorder (SAD) are unknown.

  • Chemical changes in the brain caused by changes in the amount of sunlight are probably involved. Risk factors for SAD include living in geographical locations that are dark or cloudy during the winter.
  • A tendency to have SAD may run in some families.
  • Given how often alcohol abuse and dependence occur in individuals with SAD, there is thought to be a possible genetic link between having either illness.
  • Low levels of vitamin D seem to be a risk factor for developing a number of mood disorders, including SAD.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/7/2015

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