Opinion: Holidays and the despair of the cold

Zoe Donovan, Staff Reporter

The sun seems to have abandoned central Illinois.

It’s cold, it’s dreary, there’s slush and ice on the ground, and you’re one false step away from wiping out and bruising a tailbone.

Fall was here for all of two weeks, and we’ve now been thrown violently into winter.

My point is it’s cold, and it’s an extreme change in weather that we’ve seen in the last few weeks.

An article posted by Harvard Health in 2017 poses that mental health can decline in extreme weather changes, especially in the winter.

The cold keeps people inside, at home or in their dorms, they’re less likely to want to go out and they can feel disconnected from others.

Germs and bacteria spread, and bad health can certainly add to the overall uncomfortable nature of the weather.

The cold weather can cause flare-ups of pain in those who suffer from illnesses with chronic pain.

This isn’t even mentioning the effects of holidays on mental health. Many people see the holidays as a time when they have to be happy.

Some people experience Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, which can manifest as depression like symptoms, and is more than simply a case of the “winter blues.”

While the idea of suicide spiking around the holidays is a myth, according to the CDC. It can be a stressful time, especially for students.

With finals approaching, returning home and other factors that see changes in people’s lives, it can be a difficult and stressful time.

Take care of yourself this winter. Bundle up, invest in a set of snow and ice traction attachments for your shoes, keep up with your social life. Recognize signs, that might indicate something more than a simple bad mood because of the weather, in yourself and your friends.

Zoë Donovan is a junior journalism major. They can be reached at 581–2812 or at [email protected]