Why does sunshine make me sad

When spring makes you sad ...

Fresh green and sunshine ensure that most people enjoy life and are in a good mood. But those who suffer from depression are now particularly at risk.

Seldom have we wished for spring so dearly as this year. The lack of light and the cold weather in the last few months have affected many people. But the beginning of the bright, warm season can also bring risks for the psyche: While queues form in front of the ice cream parlors and life happily shifts outside, people with depression often have a low point in their mood. “They experience their environment as energetic and lively - and this makes them all the more aware of the deficit of their depression,” explains Prof. med. Michael Berner, chief physician at the Bad Säckinger Rhein-Jura Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy.

Feeling excluded from the joy of life and positive impulses is one of the main characteristics of depression. The good weather and the associated general good mood reinforce the impression of being isolated and misunderstood. In the case of bipolar disorder, in which periods of depression and manic phases can occur, the opposite effect is also possible: In this case, the spring fever triggers excessive euphoria and activity, which, however, cannot be regulated or controlled by those affected. "There is a risk that the patient will fly too high‘ - and then experience a crash, "explains Prof. Berner.

For this reason, spring - next to Christmas - is the second most risky time of the year for people with depression. Whether other negative factors such as a weather-related change in the hormonal balance or the greater sensitivity to weather of depressed people also play a role has not yet been scientifically clarified. The only protection against the "dangers" of the spring weather is to know the possible risks, explains the chief physician of the Rhein-Jura-Klinik. Relatives of depressed people should now pay particular attention to whether there is a deterioration in their mood. “Two questions help you to recognize whether you are in a critical condition: In the last few weeks, have I had the feeling that I am not really happy? Did I get the impression that I lacked the energy for a lot of things? ”Says Prof. Berner. Anyone who can answer yes to both questions should not hesitate to seek medical help.