Seasonal Affective Disorder and what you can do as an employer
As the long summer days draw to a close and the nights start to draw in we are all acutely aware of the impact of the shorter daylight hours. For some of us this can leave us feeling generally fed up and for others the impact is more significant.
SAD or seasonal affective disorder is a form of depression that can affect people over the winter months caused by the lack of bright light, when sunlight is at its lowest level. You might be interested to know that this affects 2 million people in the UK and that low levels of light have a real impact on our frame of mind. Research into SAD suggests sufferers may experience a number of symptoms such as depression, fatigue, low motivation and low self-esteem.
So what can you do to help as an employer?
Ensuring good practices are in place with regard to taking breaks and getting outside when possible is a good start point, to make the most of the daylight hours. Accessing as much daylight in offices and work spaces as possible by keeping blinds open and windows clear is also helpful. Use of artificial lights approved for SAD sufferers may also be an option for your business if you don’t have a natural source of light.
A SAD sufferer or not, we all feel better and are more energized by having access to day light (or artificial day light) as much as possible during the winter months. Call us for more information or if you would like help with managing this in your workplace.
Please let us know what you think about this condition and if you have had experience of managing it in your workplace, we’d love to hear from you.