Sunday, February 20, 2011

Seasonal Affective Disorder - SAD? Walk Away from the Blues

Seasonal affective disorder is a cyclical depression that occurs during the winter months, typically between November and March. It is brought on by insufficient exposure to light. As the days start to get shorter and the angle of the sun changes, the symptoms of SAD begin to appear.

It is estimated that 20% of the American adult population, or 36 million people, are affected by SAD every year. The further you live from the equator, the more susceptible you are.

As the seasons change from spring and summer to fall and winter, do you develop any of the following symptoms?

  • Diminished productivity or creativity?
  • Feeling that you have little or no control over your appetite or weight?
  • More memory and concentration problems?
  • Lower energy than usual?
  • Lowered interest in socializing?
  • Awakening feeling tired even though you are sleeping more?
  • Mood changes such as feeling more anxious, irritable, sad, or depressed?
  • Lessened ability to cope with stress?
  • Less enthusiasm about the future or reduced enjoyment in your life?

    If you answered yes to two or more of these, you may be one of the many people affected by SAD.

    SAD can be aggravated by reduced light outside during winter months and by spending too much time in indoor environments that have low levels of light, whether at home or at work. SAD symptoms have been reported during summer months from people who work in environments without windows. They can also occur in overly sensitive individuals at any time of year after a series of cloudy days.

    The 3 brain chemicals serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine affect how we feel, our energy level and mood. During the winter month’s people with SAD tend to crave sweets and carbs. Eating large amounts of carbs usually increases the amount of tryptophan (an essential amino acid derived from protein foods) that gets into the brain. Once in the brain, the tryptophan becomes serotonin, the neurotransmitter that is so critical to psychological well-being. So, if you tend to be drawn to sweets and starches in the winter months it may be your body’s attempt to raise your levels of serotonin.

    If you have been diagnosed with SAD, here are some suggestions:

    1)Get as much light as possible and avoid dark environments during daylight hours in winter.
    2)Discuss your symptoms with your physician. If diagnosed with SAD, they may prescribe special light treatments to help relieve your symptoms.
    3)Move that body – Exercise daily, preferably outdoors taking advantage of the natural light.Rearrange work spaces near a window, or set up bright lights in your work area.
    4)Stay on a regular sleep-wake cycle. It has been reported that people with SAD feel more alert when they stick to a regular schedule.
    5)Be aware of cold temperatures and dress to conserve your energy. Many people affected by seasonal changes are more sensitive to extreme temperatures.
    6)Avoid or minimize unnecessary stress.
    7)When possible, postpone making major life changes until spring or summer.
    8)If possible, arrange your vacation during the winter months in a warm and sunny climate.

    Set up a timer in your bedroom to switch on the lights a half an hour or more before you get up. This technique has been reported to have an antidepressant effect and actually help people awaken more easily.

    Eat a good diet. Choose lean proteins such as those found in lean meat, poultry (without skin), fish, eggs, beans and low-fat dairy products. When choosing carbohydrate foods go for the whole grain varieties as much as possible including bread, pasta and rice. Eat ample salads and vegetables as well as fruit daily.

    There’s no known way to prevent the development of SAD. However, if you take steps early on to manage symptoms, you may be able to prevent them from getting worse over time. By gaining control over symptoms before they begin, you may be able to head off the serious changes in mood, appetite and behavior that can disrupt your daily life.

    For more information, go to:
    Feel Free to Contact Shayn Cutino at:
  • Phone:(925) 516-2868
  • Wednesday, February 16, 2011

    Discover Help for Panic Attacks through Hypnosis

    Do any of the following situations sound familiar? You are driving in congested traffic and have to come to a sudden stop as a careless driver cuts right in front of you. All of a sudden, you are finding it difficult to breathe and you feel trapped in your own car. You are engaged in a screaming match with your spouse or partner and, seemingly out of nowhere, you begin to experience chest pains and dizziness.

    You are alone on an elevator and it comes to a screeching halt between floors. In the two minutes that the elevator takes to resume proper function, you have convinced yourself that you are going to die in that small space and no one will notice for weeks. If you found yourself nodding your head to any of these scenarios, or you have experienced something similar, you may have had a panic attack.

    There are around three million people in the United States who suffer from panic attacks, so please know that you are not alone. Panic attacks are described as one of the most distressing and terrifying conditions that a person can experience, as the symptoms can appear so suddenly and often mimic those of a heart attack or a nervous breakdown. While these attacks can last from a few seconds to several hours, most times the symptoms will exhibit themselves for about thirty minutes. There is no doubt that this half-hour of time can seem like an eternity for someone in the midst of a panic attack’s grips.

    What are some indications that you may be experiencing a panic attack? The symptoms may include; a racing or pounding heartbeat, nausea, difficulty breathing, hot flashes, trembling or shaking, feeling of choking, and fear of losing control or dying. With this in mind, it is no wonder that many first-time sufferers contact their local emergency room as quickly as possible!

    There are many reasons that certain people are more inclined to suffer from panic attacks. Panic disorders have been shown to run in families, so certainly heredity must be considered. Men and women with strong phobias may experience a panic attack when confronted with the situation or object they fear so greatly. The withdrawal process from alcohol, drugs, or other medications can cause an onset of panic as the effects of the substances leave the body.

    Finally, and perhaps a cause that is not considered often, a lack of assertiveness in an individual can cause panic attacks. When you engage in passive communication with others, you may be holding in important emotions that eventually explode in the form of an attack. While this is not an exhaustive list, many people who suffer from panic attacks will find one of these issues as the source of their condition.

    There is a safe and effective method for bringing an end to the panic attacks that cripple your life. A trained clinical hypnotherapist can introduce you to relaxation techniques that will unlock the initial source of your attack and remove that connection in your mind. You will no longer have to live in fear that certain situations or people will trigger another traumatic episode.

    Shayn Cutino
    Behavioral Therapist - Author - Speaker

    Contact Shayn today for a session (Face to Face or Phone Sessions Available)
    Phone: 925-516-2868

    Book: "The Anja Technique - the art of self love"
    Paperback with CD - $15.95 (Purchase Here)
    Kindle Format for $2.99 (Purchase Here)

    Wednesday, February 2, 2011

    The Anja Technique: The Art of Self Love - By Author Shayn Cutino

    "The Anja Technique" is a five step process of life changing tools that will transform your life from unhappiness into a world of love and self-acceptance. (CD also included)

    About the Author
    Shayn Cutino is a certified clinical hypnotherapist, a member of the American Association of Professional Hypnotherapists, the International Hypnosis Research Institute, and the International Hypnosis Federation. Through her sessions with people from all walks of life, she discovered that the missing connection between each person and a productive life was the relationship they have with themselves. "The Anja Technique" was developed by Shayn to teach individuals how to love themselves and overcome the multitude of obstacles that attempt to block them from achieving a well rounded life.

    She lives in Northern California with her husband, her two children, and two dogs, where she maintains her private practice. New Bio Shayn Cutino developed "The Anja Technique" through he sessions with individuals from all walks of life, discovering that the missing connection between each person and a productive life was the relationship they have with themselves.

    Contact Shayn Cutino at:
    Phone: 925-516-2868