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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sleep and The Holiday Blues

Caution: Consult a medical professional if you have major depression, a potentially dangerous condition that requires correct diagnosis and treatment. Home remedies should only be used with medical approval. Also, check with your medical professional for prescription drug contraindications, and double check with your pharmacist to be extra sure.

From now until the new year I'm going to write about depression, focusing on a remedy per day. Today's post is about sleep depression. And by depression, I do not mean major depression. I mean something more like the holiday blues.

When you're tired, you're (IMHO) depressed, at least physically, if not also mentally. By depressed, I mean slowed down. Not as energetic. So if you're feeling a bit depressed, nothing seems interesting, you don't even feel like doing something you normally enjoy, stop and think. Did you get enough sleep last night? Could it be you're actually tired?

It took me most of my life experiencing this sort of situation to finally realize if I'm bored but don't feel like doing anything interesting, what I really am is tired. When I feel like that, it feels somewhat like depression. My interest in doing anything interesting is just about zip. (I'll watch TV usually, that's about all I feel up to doing; it solves the boredom without having to actually do anything or think about anything more than changing the channel.)

Even though I now recognize that situation in myself, I don't necessarily stop and sleep right away when I realize I'm tired; it my be an inconvenient time, or I don't want to mess up the upcoming night's sleep. Still, just knowing that all that's really wrong is I need a good night's sleep makes me feel better. That vague feeling of something being wrong because I didn't feel like doing anything doesn't hit me like it used to, because now I understand what's really going on.

Perhaps this simple connection will help you. You don't have to decide now. Sleep on it!

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