Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Winter blues aka seasonal affective disorder
There was a winter in Chicago where there were 5 or more weeks without sunlight. We were very busy that winter in the office. People were complaining left and right about the dreary days. The Prozac flowed like honey to ease the pain that the lack of sunlight caused. Lightboxes were ordered and Wellbutrin was prescribed, all in the hopes of some relief. Fortunately, these interventions helped. I wonder what it was like in the days prior to antidepressants. I guess people were grumpy and irritable and you stayed away from them, if they got too bad there was always the assylum. Though I take a cautious approach with medications, and prescibe them almost hesistantly, I'm glad they are available and they add to the quality of our lives. Sometimes we psychiatrists prescribe medications because it is a matter of life and death and others we prescribe because of quality of life issues.