Seasonal affective disorder

We’re all in this for good.

By sharing your stories and data, you will:
  • help each other live better and uncover the best ways to manage your health today
  • help researchers shorten the path to new treatments tomorrow

How much good can your data do? A whole lot, as co-founder Jamie Heywood explains in this video.

What is seasonal affective disorder?

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is episodes of depression that occur at a certain time of the year, usually during winter.

Common symptoms reported by people with seasonal affective disorder

Common symptoms
How bad it is
What people are taking for it

Reports may be affected by other conditions and/or medication side effects. We ask about general symptoms (anxious mood, depressed mood, fatigue, pain, and stress) regardless of condition.
Last updated:

Treatments taken by people with seasonal affective disorder

Treatment name(s)
Type
How many have tried
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Blue light therapy)
Type
Procedures
How many have tried
16
Treatment name(s)

(Wellbutrin XL)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
11
Tried for
seasonal affective disorder (8) depressed mood (5)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Prozac)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
10
Treatment name(s)

(Vistaril)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
8
Tried for
anxious mood (8)
Treatment name(s)

(Zoloft)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
8
Tried for
seasonal affective disorder (5) depressed mood (4)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Vitamin D Prescription)
Type
Supplement
How many have tried
8
Treatment name(s)

(Cymbalta)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
7
Tried for
depressed mood (4) seasonal affective disorder (2)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Lexapro)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
7
Tried for
depressed mood (6) anxious mood (3)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Neurontin)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
7
Tried for
pain (6) anxious mood (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Ativan)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
7
Tried for
anxious mood (7)

Data from patients with seasonal affective disorder, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
Last updated:

Compare treatments taken by people with seasonal affective disorder

Treatment name(s)
Perceived effectiveness
Side effects
Total evaluations
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Blue light therapy)
Perceived effectiveness
for seasonal affective disorder (11 evaluations)
Side effects
eye pain itching 1 more
Total evaluations
11
Treatment name(s)

(Wellbutrin XL)
Perceived effectiveness
for seasonal affective disorder (5 evaluations)
Side effects
weight loss anxious mood 6 more
Total evaluations
11
Tried for
seasonal affective disorder (8) depressed mood (5)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Prozac)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (4 evaluations)
Side effects
agitation with irritability boredom 9 more
Total evaluations
10
Treatment name(s)

(Vistaril)
Perceived effectiveness
for anxious mood (5 evaluations)
Side effects
daytime sleepiness
Total evaluations
5
Tried for
anxious mood (8)
Treatment name(s)

(Zoloft)
Perceived effectiveness
for seasonal affective disorder (5 evaluations)
Side effects
agitation deadened emotions 12 more
Total evaluations
8
Tried for
seasonal affective disorder (5) depressed mood (4)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Vitamin D Prescription)
Perceived effectiveness
for seasonal affective disorder (8 evaluations)
Side effects
nausea
Total evaluations
10
Treatment name(s)

(Cymbalta)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (3 evaluations)
Side effects
breathing difficulty chest pain 3 more
Total evaluations
8
Tried for
depressed mood (4) seasonal affective disorder (2)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Lexapro)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (3 evaluations)
Side effects
difficulty sleeping dry mouth 1 more
Total evaluations
6
Tried for
depressed mood (6) anxious mood (3)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Neurontin)
Perceived effectiveness
for pain (11 evaluations)
Side effects
blurry vision dizziness 6 more
Total evaluations
12
Tried for
pain (6) anxious mood (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Ativan)
Perceived effectiveness
for anxious mood (6 evaluations)
Side effects
loopy feeling
Total evaluations
6
Tried for
anxious mood (7)
  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell
  • Severe
  • Moderate
  • Mild
  • None

Data from patients with seasonal affective disorder, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
Last updated:

Who has seasonal affective disorder on PatientsLikeMe?


Age
Age Proportion # of patients
<20 6
20s 81
30s 130
40s 191
50s 230
60s 139
70+ 26
Age at first symptom
Age at first symptom Proportion # of patients
0-19 years 166
20-29 years 87
30-39 years 75
40-49 years 53
50-59 years 17
60-69 years 4
70+ years 0

Distribution of sex

Sex
Sex Proportion # of patients
Male 137
Female 666

Diagnosis status
Diagnosis status Proportion # of patients
Diagnosed 396
Not Diagnosed 141

These charts show data from seasonal affective disorder patients who have completed their condition history
Last updated: