What’s next, once the holidays are over?  For some of us, it could be the January blues.

Mark Lionello is program manager for the Cochrane-Timiskaming branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association.  He says among the factors causing that depressed feeling are short winter days, so less sunlight.

“And I think just a little bit of a letdown from the holidays.  I mean there’s so much going on, so much happening, it’s so busy that that drop-off definitely contributes to some of those feelings,” he says.

Lionello says getting back into routine in terms of work, exercise and eating habits can help snap you out of the January blues.  But if the depression lasts, you should reach out to a doctor or other professional who can help.

“Any time that you feel that your mood is depressed or you’re feeling sad and it’s longer than a couple of weeks, then I definitely would suggest that you at least make an inquiry or talk to someone, a family doctor, anyone,” Lionello advises. “And if you really feel that it’s inhibiting your life or really making changes or you’re really feeling that you’re not up to doing things that you normally did before, that could be a good clue that something’s going on. ”

If you notice that someone in your life has the January blues, Lionello says the best you can do is offer a listening ear.  You can suggest doing something you both enjoy, but don’t push.

The CMHA is also a good place to make inquiries. You can call 705-267-8100 weekdays from 8:30am to 4:30 pm; and on evenings and weekends, 705-264-3003 or 1-888-340-3003.