Some people experience spring-summer onset seasonal affective disorder (SAD), also called summer depression. As the name suggests, summertime SAD begins in spring or summer and lasts until the fall or winter. Unlike fall-winter onset SAD, depression may be accompanied by insomnia and decreased sleep, a decreased appetite, and weight loss.
Summertime SAD is much less common and not as well studied as winter depression. Thus, doctors don’t fully understand how and why the syndrome develops.
Treatment is similar to that used for clinical depression, such as antidepressants. In addition, patients may be advised to limit time spent in natural daylight and use air conditioning to stay cool, especially in the evenings.
This article first appeared in the January 2020 issue of UC Berkeley Health After 50.