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8 Diseases That You Could Get This Holiday Season

Posted by Jessica Chu on

8 Diseases That You Could Get This Holiday Season
Holiday season is my favorite time of the year! But only as long as I or someone I know does not fall sick. This time of the year comes with celebrations and a liveliness of its own. There are busy shoppers around.

People hustling, laughing and looking forward to spending time with their families. And then there is this lovely smell of stuffed turkey, mashed potatoes, roast beef, pies, and puddings in the air.

Unfortunately, this is not true for everyone. For many, this is the season of depression, anxiety, and the onset of holiday season diseases. 
According to sociologists, during a 25 year period in U.S, there has been an excess of 42,325 natural deaths in the Christmas holiday period. 
This in itself is an alarming situation.

 Some of the most recurrent diseases or complication of diseases which occur during this time of the month include:

  1. Bipolar Disorder
  2. S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder)
  3. Alcohol Poisoning
  4. Frostbite and Hypothermia
  5. Dyspepsia
  6. Christmas Tree Syndrome
  7. Heart Attacks 
  8. Diabetes

Bipolar Disorder

Do you feel dramatic shifts in emotions, moods, and energy levels during holidays?

Does this feeling last for several days or weeks?

Do you face a lack of energy, mental focus and tiredness during the holiday season? Do you eat and sleep too much or too little in winter?


Well, there are times when you go through all of these feelings, and suddenly everything changes. You start to feel overly happy, energetic, and optimistic. You think these are positive characteristics, but these happy manic episodes can put you in huge risks.

It indicates you are dealing with bipolar disorder which is a common holiday season disease.

Have you ever contemplated why these symptoms appear more often during the holidays?

It’s because the holiday season poses a severe challenge to people having bipolar disorder. You may get exhausted by disrupted schedules and lots of traveling to make to family dinners. The stress of buying gifts and loss of sleep in the holiday season can trigger bipolar disorder.

All the hassle of shopping, partying, and preparations swift your mood all of a sudden, leaving you either overjoyed or sometimes anxious.

S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder)

If you don’t feel like getting out of your bed in holidays or are feeling exhaustion, the issue might not be just a matter of laziness. You might be sad because you are suffering from S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder). 

You may feel intense fatigue and want to isolate yourself from social situations under the effects of S.A.D. S.A.D. is a seasonal disorder that starts with the arrival of the winter. It is observed as one of the most common holiday season disease.

You may feel your day time has shrunk, and nights are colder and more extended. You may get stressed over not feeling the warmth of sunlight during holidays. The cold chilly winds blowing in the holiday season can further add to your anxiety. 

ou may feel your day time has shrunk, and nights are colder and more extended. You may get stressed over not feeling the warmth of sunlight during holidays. The cold chilly winds blowing in the holiday season can further add to your anxiety. 

Besides the weather, some other social factors like the need of spending too much on celebrations and incapability of managing the finances may cause S.A.D. 

But don’t worry; you are not alone in this. 

“43% of Americans say that the extra expenses make the holidays hard to enjoy.”


Alcohol Poisoning

Do you enjoy whiskey or beer on holiday?

Are you one who likes to go a little tipy on Christmas eve?

Do you get intoxicated and drink limitlessly during late-night hangouts?

All this might make you ecstatic. But, in the longer run, if you continue consuming too much alcohol during holidays, it might lead you to alcohol poisoning.

Higher than the standard limit of drinking can take a toll on your liver and can severely affect your nervous system as well. You get out of your senses by overconsumption of alcohol, which may pose severe threats like an increase in traffic accidents during the holiday season.

Frostbite and Hypothermia

During Christmas nights, people tend to stay out till late and don’t care about the weather to celebrate their holidays. But they unknowingly expose themselves to low temperature for a more extended period that might get them into trouble of catching frostbite. 

Do you know someone who is complaining about their aching limbs, cold ears and nose, pain in the lips, and numb hands, or you are the one who is doing that in the holiday season?

You can’t get away from this because this is your body’s way of dealing with the cold and low temperatures. But if prolonged and left untreated, it can lead to conditions of frostbite and hypothermia.

Frostbite is a common holiday season disease which happens if a body is exposed to extreme cold temperature. In severe cases, you might lose the affected body part due to tissue death. 


For food lovers, holidays bring a lot of opportunities to satisfy their tummy and fill their stomachs up to no limit. Pretty much, the goal of the holiday season becomes eating their way through the holiday.

But this way of celebrating holidays can cause some very discomforting illnesses such as indigestion, heartburn, nausea, and pain in the chest, leading to the condition called dyspepsia.

Pies, brandy butter, chocolates, turkey, and ham roasts are some of the most common foods that are loved by people during the holiday season. Due to busy schedules, most people do not have the luxury of enjoying such elaborate spreads throughout the year.

So to satiate their desire, many eat even above their capacity. Due to overeating, stomach gets stretched which brings an acid reflux or heartburn and it is one of the major symptoms of dyspepsia. 

Christmas Tree Syndrome

As soon as the holiday season begins, the hunt for the best Christmas tree begins too. Holiday season marks Christmas Tree season too. You look for tips to find the most economical tree, one that would last through the season too.

Once bought, the tree is then laden with decorations to turn the holiday mood on. Who’d know these trees could also be a reason of a very potent holiday season disease. Ever heard of the Christmas Tree Syndrome? Yes, these trees could be the cause of an actual syndrome! 

Christmas trees in most cases are cut even prior to Thanksgiving, only to be stored or sent through refrigerated trucks to dealers. As the trees are tightly packed, they often begin growing moulds.

Once the tree gets to your house and starts reproducing, it causes the Christmas Tree Syndrome which causes severe cough, watery eyes, runny nose, and asthma attacks to predisposed asthma patients.

The Asthma Society of Canada states that the Christmas and holiday season increases the rate of allergies. Because people spend 90% of their time in homes, and Christmas trees introduce indoor irritants that do not exist throughout the year.

Heart Attack

More people experience heart-related problems during the holiday season than any other time of the year.

Cold weather, overindulgence in fatty foods, alcohol, and emotional stress can put a strain on blood vessels and trigger pre-existing heart conditions.

Some people become reluctant in holidays to take care of their diet, and they ignore doing regular exercise, which is not good for health. Holiday induced delays in seeking treatment might be another reason for putting you at risk of getting heart attacks. 


The holiday season can be a rough time for you if you have diabetes and you feel restricted in what you can eat.

Do you keep an eye on the amount of food that you eat?

If no, then be careful about the amount of sugar that you take because it can strongly affect your blood glucose levels.

It becomes very tough for people to care about their blood glucose levels when they see cakes, pies, puddings of different flavors, and chocolates everywhere during the holidays..

The diseases, as mentioned earlier, are some common holiday season diseases that anyone can face. The only way to prevent these disorders is through self-awareness.

The most important thing is to know the symptoms of complications and their prevention. Keep yourself well informed and take the necessary steps in order to stay safe from being a victim of such holiday season diseases. 


Isabel Healthcare Blog, (Dec 14, 2017), The 12 Ailments of Christmas

BrightQuest, (Dec 14, 2018), Do Seasons Affect Bipolar Disorder?

WebMD, (Dec 20, 2018), Visual Guide to Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.)

VeryWellhealth, (Oct 15, 2019), How Do the Holidays Affect Your Heart?

WebMD, (n.d), A look at Bipolar Disorder

Verywellmind, (n.d), Coping with G.A.D. during the Holidays