Beating the Holiday Blues

HolidayBlues_thinkstockBy Virginia Markvart, RN

For most people, the Christmas and Hanukkah seasons are wonderful and magical times of the year filled with joyful celebration and happiness. The bright-colored lights and splendid decorations of the season remind many of us that the holidays are a time for holding on to fantasies, with the wish of having our every dream fulfilled. Despite this image, for some people the holidays often can be a time of increased stress and loneliness.

Experts have categorized holiday stress in three general areas.

Socioeconomic stress may result from the added financial burdens of gift-giving and of purchasing additional food and drink for special holiday entertaining. Being physically or emotionally separated from one’s family adds to holiday tension. In some cases, the increased proximity to family may likewise cause additional stress as a result for unresolved family conflicts or differences.

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