How to combat SAD this winter

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  • At this time of year as the days become darker, many tend to experience a low mood, loss of enjoyment in everyday activities and find it difficult to get on with work, home chores, and day-to-day life

    Approximately 1 in 5 people are affected by Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) in the UK, and when the cold and dark nights lead to more time being spent indoors, particularly within your own home, it is important that you space is decorated to bring light and energy into the home. SAD can have huge effects on the energy of sufferers, their mood and can also greatly impact sleeping patterns and cause insomnia.

    Read more: How to sleep well with… Adam Black of Button & Sprung

    Look at the lighting in your room


    Image credit: Jeremy Phillips

    One of the most common recommendations to beat SAD is to increase exposure to sunlight. When this isn’t possible from the outside, re-examine and control the artificial light in your bedroom to boost your mood instead. For the bedroom, look to add more lamps around the room and ensure that you swap dim bulbs to brighter, warm coloured bulbs. Adding these around the room will feel more cosy. Place lamps around the outside of the room to make the room feel more spacious, rather than lighting in the middle of the room that can make rooms appear smaller and darker.

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    Reassess colours and tones

    When decorating your bedroom, keep in mind the environment that will create a welcoming atmosphere during winter. Warm colours, such as reds, oranges and earthy tones are recommended for a cosy feeling and can help to remind you of warm summer evenings. Try to incorporate accent pieces into the bedroom, such as adding pillows, throws or rugs in these shades. Try to avoid solely using paler or cold colours such as white, as this can lead to a cold and gloomy atmosphere.

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    Read more: 6 affordable ways to liven up bedroom walls

    Add some greenery

    combat SAD

    Image credit: Lizzie Orme

    Plants bring life and energy into the home and when you are spending less time outside, plants can help to bring the outdoors to you. To boost your mood, try incorporating plants with lots of foliage. Placing plants near windows will help to create a summer time effect within the bedroom. If you don’t trust yourself with keeping plants alive, add large prints of flowers and greenery into the room as an alternative way to bring the outside to you.

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    Declutter to remove unnecessary stress

    Extra clutter can make you feel closed in and add to stress. By displaying items that you love and are excited about, such as having your favourite perfume on display, you can focus on these items and help to create a sense of calm and mindfulness in your home. Opt for bedside cabinets with drawers that allow necessary items to be kept neatly out of sight, this way only items that bring joy such as lamps, candles or your favourite books will be on show. Dressing tables with mirrors can help to bring light into the room, as well as displaying your favourite pieces. Ensure dressing tables are kept clutter free to become the highlight of the room.

    Read more: Bedroom storage ideas to bring tranquillity to your sleep space

    Focus on the bed


    Image credit: Tim Young

    One of the major effects of SAD is a difficulty to sleep. Try refreshing your bed so it becomes a comfortable, inviting place that you want to spend time. Purchasing fresh bedspreads should help to make the bed an inviting and cosy place. Look for softer, thicker materials to keep out the winter cold and remember to keep these in warm hues to add the feeling of energy into your bedroom. For beds that simply no longer feel appealing, purchasing a new mattress can revitalize a night’s rest, and everything looks better after a good night’s sleep. Try to use a mattress guide, which rate the comfort and firmness of mattresses, to ensure an optimum nights rest.

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    How are you working to combat SAD this winter?

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