If you live in a colder climate, you may get a little down in the winter months. This feeling of sadness is especially prevalent if you experience many overcast days. The lack of sunlight is a culprit in those feelings. If the sadness is deep enough and affects your life, you may actually suffer from SAD.
The acronym SAD stands for seasonal affective disorder. While SAD is a multi-faceted issue, it largely stems from not getting enough sunlight, which affects your circadian rhythm. The sunlight reduction in the colder months may disrupt the body’s serotonin and melatonin levels, which further affects your sleep patterns.
SAD symptoms are similar to depressive symptoms. Sufferers not only feel blue, they also often oversleep and feel tired all the time. They even see changes in their weight and interests. Deeper depressive symptoms, such as feelings of hopelessness or worthlessness, can accompany these symptoms. Depending on the severity of the symptoms, you may need to see a doctor.
One of the ways you can combat SAD is to seek out the sunlight in your daily routines. Some changes, both big and small, in your home can help with that goal.
Add and Expand Windows
One of the ways to invite more sunlight into your home is by adding more windows. While this project falls under the category of big changes, this can definitely help with the winter blues.
A relatively easy way to add more windows is to install a skylight, which is essentially a window for your ceiling. A skylight naturally necessitates having the ceiling directly under the roof. You’ll want to locate skylights where the increased sun will be a benefit in the winter but not detrimental in the summer.
You can also add transom windows to your house. These are windows that go above the framework (transom) of another window or a doorway.
Another method of increasing sunlight inside your house is to expand your existing windows. The easiest way to accomplish this is to increase the size of a window, such as transforming a regular window into an oversized picture window. You can also expand the space into a bay window bump out, which is a large project, but one with increased benefits.
If you want some smaller projects to increase the sunlight in your home, look to mirrors for help. You can use the reflective quality of mirrors to refract light into your rooms. As a bonus, mirrors are portable, so you can change their location in the summertime if you get too much sunlight.
Concerning placement, the main goal is to reflect light. Therefore, you’ll want to track your existing light in the target months. Wait for a relatively sunny day, and observe where the sunlight hits. That’s the location where you’ll want to place a mirror.
You’ll also want to experiment with where the sunlight is reflected. You don’t just want a sunny glare — you want to actually illuminate the dark corners of your room. Therefore, angle the mirror so it reflects light in specific areas. You may even want to add a second mirror to further reflect the sun.
Replace With Glass
While not as reflective as mirrors, plain glass is also a reflective surface. Therefore, using glass in your décor will help promote a bright atmosphere in your house.
One way to achieve this goal is to replace wood with glass. For example, you could change out the doors in your cabinetry so they feature glass panes. A bonus to this project is you open up the appearance of the cabinets. Another option is replacing wooden shelving with glass shelves. You may not see as much light reflection as with mirrors, but the ambiance should be notably brighter.
Don’t let SAD, or even plain winter blues, keep you down. Increase the sunlight in your home with glass, mirrors, and windows. Consult with Martin Glass Co. for ways to incorporate glass and mirrors into your décor.