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Is it Seasonal Affective Disorder or Just the "Winter Blues"?

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DUBUQUE, Iowa - This winter weather is really taking a toll on a lot of people. Doctors say some patients believe they're suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder because they're sick and tired of this winter.

But Medical Associates Psychiatrist Thomas Boxleiter, M.D. says that disorder shouldn't be affecting people at this point in the winter. He says having the "winter blues" is not the same as Seasonal Affective Disorder.
That disorder usually sets in during the late fall when the days get shorter. A patient begins to improve this time of year.

Boxleiter uses a florescent light machine to treat those patients.

Boxleiter said, "It simulates the way the sun effects you in the springtime. It helps lift you out the depression just the way the sun normally does in the spring. "

Dr. Boxleiter also says if the weather itself has you down; get out of the house, spend time with friends and try to embrace outdoor winter activities.