Brussels - Post Report Question and Answers

Are there any particular mental health issues that tend to crop up at post, such as Seasonal Affective Disorder (winter blues)?

It's quite gray and rainy most of the year. We bought a sun lamp, and use Vitamin D supplements in the winter. - Feb 2023

None. - Jan 2022

SAD is an issue for sure due to the weather and long, rainy, gray winters. - Oct 2021

It could get dark and rainy in Brussels just about anytime of the year. The locals say that when the weather is sunny you must go outside and enjoy since you don't how long the sunshine will last. Makes sure to get outside when the sun is shining! - Sep 2020

Yes, the long, dark winter days can be an issue here, and compounded with cold, damp weather, many people struggle with winters here. "Happy Lamps" are recommended! - Sep 2020

A lot of people complain about the rainy and gray winters. It rains a lot all year round but I think if you have that expectation going in, it's really not that bad. - Mar 2020

SAD can be an issue especially with the amount of rain we get. Last December we had a total of eight hours of sunshine for the whole month of December!!! Bring vitamin D and soak up the sun when you can!!! - Feb 2019

It can be a long, gloomy winter. People with Seasonal Affective Disorder might have an issue here. Last December we had only 13 hours of sunlight the entire month. That said, people get out of town and fly to the sun. - Feb 2019

Yes, SAD can be an issues. The sun might not break through the clouds for weeks in the winter. And the daylight hours are fairly short. Commuting both ways in the dark is normal in December/January. - May 2018

Not only is Brussels at 50°N with short winter days, it's also cloudy. Last month, I think we got somewhere around 20 hours of sunshine. In a whole month. A lot of people have sun lamps in the office, and a plane ticket to Spain, Portugal, or Italy can often be had for less than €100. - Jan 2018

Seasonal Affective Disorder is definitely a concern. There are far more grey and rainy days than there are sunny days. I found it helped to get outside everyday, regardless of the weather. Having fresh flowers and plants indoors was also helpful. - Feb 2017

Seasonal Affective Disorder is an issue here. It can be grey and/or drizzly/rainy for weeks at a time. Be prepared - bring your Vitamin D and your S.A.D. lamp. Be sure to have bright lightbulbs in your home. Any time there is a spot of sunlight, Belgians do NOT take it for granted - even if it is cold out they will be out with their faces to the sun. - Dec 2016

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