Health Watch – Holiday Time: The Holiday Blues

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on "Healthwatch," we're helping you survive the holiday season. If this time of year isn't happy for you, remember that you're not alone. Psychiatrists at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas say for some people, the expectations and media images of the holidays create a contrast with reality that leads to the blues. People who are alone or feel isolated are particularly prone to these feelings.

Doctors say the holiday blues tend to go away after the New Year. They can be prevented by focusing attention on other people. Try getting involved in your community or with charitable efforts. Also exercise regularly, eat properly, get enough sleep, don't drink too much alcohol and remember that very few people really have the kinds of holidays you see in the movies or in TV commercials.
Dec. 2004