Internet searches confirm the SAD effects of winter
The findings of the US study suggest that mental illness may be more strongly linked with seasonal patterns than previously thought.
Using Google's public database of queries, the study team identified and monitored mental health queries in the US and Australia from 2006–10.
Although some conditions such as seasonal affective disorder were already known to be associated with seasonal weather patterns, the results consistently showed seasonal effects across all conditions – even after adjusting for media trends.
Eating disorder searches were down 42% in summers in Australia, compared to 37% in the US, and schizophrenia searches decreased by 36% in Australian summers (37% US).
Bipolar searches were down 17% during Australian summers (16% in US); ADHD searches decreased by 31% (28%); OCD searches were down 15% (18%), and bipolar searches decreased by 16% (18%).
Searches for suicide declined 29% during Australian