Seasonal affective disorder in children and adolescents

Am J Psychiatry. 1986 Mar;143(3):356-8. doi: 10.1176/ajp.143.3.356.


The authors studied seven children with symptoms of seasonal affective disorder. During the winter months the children regularly experienced irritability, fatigue, school difficulties, sadness, and sleep changes as well as other symptoms of seasonal affective disorder found in adults. An open trial of bright environmental light reversed many of these symptoms and improved mood and psychosocial functioning in the winter months. School counselors and therapists should consider seasonal affective disorder in the differential diagnosis of children with school difficulties that are most prominent in the fall-winter semester.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Child
  • Counseling
  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / therapy
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Phototherapy
  • Seasons*
  • Students / psychology