BOOK ONLINE 24/7

Stop Suffering!

  • Quick n' Easy Online Appointment
  • Book Appointment 24/7
  • Call Office: 915-850-0900.
Monday8:30 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday8:30 AM - 7:00 PM
Wednesday8:30 AM - 7:00 PM Open now
Thursday8:30 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday8:30 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday8:30 AM - 1:00 PM
SundayClosed

Doctor Cell Emergencies 915-540-8444

BOOK ONLINE 24/7

Functional Medicine®

🔴 Notice: As part of our Acute Injury Treatment Practice, we now offer Functional Medicine Integrative Assessments and Treatments* within our clinical scope for chronic degenerative disorders.  Learn More* Call Us Today: 915-850-0900

Functional Medicine Explained
Categories: Chiropractic

Seasonal Affective Disorder, Back Pain and Depression

Share
Seasonal Affective Disorder is a form of depression that has to do with the changing of the seasons, specifically when fall begins. It affects around 10 million Americans during the fall and winter seasons. Back pain can be a symptom of the disorder. For most individuals, the condition follows a pattern:
  • It starts with lethargy or lack of energy
  • Craving carbohydrates
  • Heavy low mood
These are typical symptoms for many dealing with the condition. The individual can experience aches and pains throughout the body, but especially the back. Recent studies have shown how various forms of depression, like Seasonal Affective Disorder, can present with pain, specifically back/spinal pain. Many individuals play it off as the blues, but research has found, depression can have a much more significant impact on an individual’s quality of life. The exact cause is still unknown. But research is finding a connection related to the level of sunlight an individual receives throughout the day.
Research has shown there could be a biochemical imbalance in the brain when there is less daylight during fall and winter. As the seasons change from summer to fall individuals can experience a shift in circadian rhythms that can cause them to disrupt their regular daily routine. However, Seasonal Affective Disorder is more common for individuals living where the daylight lessens and has been shown to affect women more than men and young adults.

Depression and Back Pain Connection

Depression can present with pain symptoms and the pain can enhance the depression. Headaches, Body aches, and especially backaches are common symptoms of depression. Research has shown that individuals with severe depression can actually feel a more intense level of pain. Physical symptoms like back pain or headaches can be the only or the beginning symptom/s of seasonal affective depression. As research continues to grow as to how the nervous system interacts with the body, pain symptoms have been found to be connected to biological mechanisms connected with stress, anxiety, and depression. Living a sedentary lifestyle, with little or no physical activity and regular exercise can be another cause for Seasonal Affective Disorder. Depression itself can cause fatigue that restrains individuals from exercising and working the core muscles for optimal spinal strength and health.
This added stress on the spine’s discs, joints, and ligaments, makes the body more susceptible to low back pain, muscle strains, illness, and injuries. Pain can wear an individual down impacting mood and overall health.

Symptoms

The difference between Seasonal Affective Disorder and chronic depression is that Seasonal Affective Disorder is limited to the same time of the year during the time of less light, and winter months. Symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder can be the same as those associated with depression. They are:
  • Feeling Low/Depressed
  • Weight gain
  • Increased appetite
  • Craving sugar and carbohydrates
  • Sleeping all-day
  • Consistent drowsiness
  • Hopelessness
  • Loss of interest in enjoyed activities
Symptoms can also be related to low levels of Vitamin D, which is associated with anxiety and depression for individuals with fibromyalgia. Seasonal Affective Disorder can be related to chronic pain conditions the way depression can. Some individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome can also present with symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Treatment

Diagnosis for Seasonal Affective Disorder requires an individual to experience at least two years of symptoms that become worse at a specific time of the year. And the depressive episodes have to significantly be worse than the non-seasonal episodes of depression. There are four types of treatments, that can be used individually or in combination. They are:

Medication

Medications used to treat the disorder are known as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors or SSRIs.

Psychotherapy

Cognitive-behavioral therapy/CBT is a form of psychotherapy that is effective for the disorder, as well as other conditions. It relies on techniques that identify negative thoughts and work on ways to not dwell on the negative and focus more on positive things and thoughts.

Lightbox Therapy

Diminished sunlight when fall and winter arrive can be replaced with regular exposure to a bright, artificial lightbox. Individuals sit or stand in front of the lightbox when they get up on a daily basis. This is done when fall begins and goes on until spring. The lightbox filters out ultraviolet rays and requires around 20 to 60 minutes of exposure to 10,000 lux of cool-white fluorescent light.

Vitamin D

Low levels of vitamin D were found in individuals with Seasonal Affective Disorder. Talk to a doctor about the proper level of vitamin D that should be taken through supplements.

The Pain and Backaches

Understanding how pain and depression are interconnected treating both conditions as part of an integrative treatment plan can include:
  • Chiropractic care for releasing muscle tension
  • Psychological counseling
  • Relaxation therapy
  • A light aerobic exercise program that stimulates serotonin levels and releases endorphins to relieve depression and pain.
  • Low-dose antidepressants can reduce depression symptoms and back pain. They work to inhibit the reuptake of neurotransmitters like serotonin and norepinephrine that is associated with a person’s mood and the way they perceive pain.

What Works

Everyone is unique, which means that different treatment plans and combinations of treatment plans may have to be tried out before finding the optimal one. A significant factor is not settling with the pain and just accepting it. Healing can be a unique and complex experience. The objective is for the individual and doctor to work collaboratively.

Depression and Chronic Pain


Dr. Alex Jimenez’s Blog Post Disclaimer

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas& New Mexico*
References
Robertson, David et al. “Associations between low back pain and depression and somatization in a Canadian emerging adult population.” The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association vol. 61,2 (2017): 96-105.
Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C.,C.C.S.T

Welcome-Bienvenido's to our blog. We focus on treating severe spinal disabilities and injuries. We also treat Sciatica, Neck and Back Pain, Whiplash, Headaches, Knee Injuries, Sport Injuries, Dizziness, Poor Sleep, Arthritis. We use advanced proven therapies focused on optimal mobility, health, fitness, and structural conditioning. We use Individualized Diet Plans, Specialized Chiropractic Techniques, Mobility-Agility Training, Adapted Cross-Fit Protocols and the "PUSH System" to treat patients suffering from various injuries and health problems. If you would like to learn more about a Doctor of Chiropractic who uses advanced progressive techniques to facilitate complete physical health, please connect with me. We a focus on simplicity to help restore mobility and recovery. I'd love to see you. Connect!

Recent Posts

Anterior/Posterior Pelvic Tilt Prevention with Chiropractic Foot Orthotics

Few individuals realize they have problems with their feet. Flat feet can cause anterior or… Read More

Osteonecrosis of Femoral Head Misdiagnosed As Sciatica

Osteonecrosis is a condition that causes the death of bone tissue from temporary or permanent… Read More

Young Adult Degenerative Disc Disorder and Optimal Spine Health

Young adults don't think about disc deterioration/degeneration until it's time for the golden years. The… Read More

Chiropractic Spinal Manipulation Techniques

There is a multitude of chiropractic techniques for spinal alignment. They are used by chiropractors… Read More

Belly Dancing Can Help Alleviate Back Pain

Belly dancing has been found to be an effective way to help individuals managing low… Read More

The Lumbosacral Joint and Possible Cause For Sciatic Nerve Pain

The lumbosacral joint is the first place chiropractors start their investigation with individuals presenting with… Read More

Online History & Registration 🔘
Call us Today 🔘