Question for Betty.

I moved up here to go to school.  It is too dark, and cold.  I think I may be depressed.  It is hard to get out of bed in the morning to go to class.  What can I do?

Betty's Answer.

Anchorage can definitely have dark and cold winters. You are not alone in having difficulty coping with winter.  Tips for coping with "Winter Blues" include:

Get outdoors; exercise; open the blinds; sit by the window; eat a balanced diet; avoid sweets; reduce caffeine; reduce alcohol intake; have a regular sleep schedule; socialize in the early evening; make major decisions in summer; or make plans to vacation in a sunny climate.

If you feel like the winter blues interfere with your ability to get to classes, or you are:  feeling sad or anxious; having decreased energy; fatigued and tired; craving carbohydrates; gaining weight; experiencing problems with concentration; having difficulty with getting tasks accomplished; or are withdrawing from family and friends . . .

It is time to visit the Student Health & Counseling Center, for a Seasonal Affective Disorder evaluation.

Light boxes are available for eligible students.  Using light at 10,000 lux for 20 minutes once or twice a day helps relieve the SAD.