Depression common during the festive season, says expert

A health expert has claimed that Christmas is one of the most common times that people are likely to suffer from depression.

Dr Paul Zollinger-Read, chief medical officer at Bupa, was talking to this week. He commented: "Unfortunately, although the festive season is often one associated with joy, it can also be a stressful, lonely or sad time for many people."

The doctor continued: "For those affected by depression, Christmas can actually be the worst time of year and something many of us need to be more aware of."

It was claimed in the article that the reason behind high depression levels during the festive season could be down to more financial pressure, the expense of Christmas, as well as the smaller quantities of sunlight, which results in low Vitamin D and serotonin levels. Another reason given was increased feelings of loneliness amongst those who don't have any family or friends to spend the holidays with.

People who think that a friend or family member is suffering from depression may want to look for common signs of the illness. According to, symptoms to look out for include isolated behaviour, missing out on social activities, an angry manner and excessive sleeping.