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Psychotherapist Liz Ritchie has had her second column published in Northampton's Chronicle and Echo newspaper, this time using her platform to discuss Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

With the clocks going back in the early hours of Sunday, October 31, the days get shorter which means the amount of daylight most people see becomes very limited.

Liz said: "For many, the change in the weather and lack of daylight can mark the start of ‘winter depression’, also known as SAD, which is a condition that is impacted by the time of year. I see a lot of people who find t hey struggle more in the winter months so thought it was quite a relevant topic to discuss in the column. 

"No one really knows why SAD occurs, but we do know that less sunlight can alter the brain’s biochemical imbalance and as a result less serotonin, which gives us the ‘feel good factor’ we all crave, is released. Reduced serotonin can lead to a dysfunction of the brain’s pathways and can cause depression, weight gain, and excessive fatigue.

"I wanted to use the newspaper column to highlight to people that if they do feel a bit lower than usual during the winter that they're not alone and there's help out there if they need it."

Liz also provided some top tips to help eliminate some of the symptoms which included exercising, eating well and talking to people about how they felt. 

To read the column in full, click here.