Smoke Got You Down? You're Not Alone.

, Written by Christine Pitawanich, Posted: Thu, August 8 2013 at 6:25 PM, Updated: Thu, August 8 2013 at 6:52 PM

Doctors are reporting the smoke is starting to get to people...but not in ways you might think.

Doctors and psychologists said they've seen more people depressed or anxious because of all this smoke.

On Thursday Paul Worst ventured out of his house to get groceries.
It's something he'd rather not do with all the smoke in the air.

"I stay inside as much as possible," said Worst who said he has asthma.

However, after the almost two-weeks of unhealthy, hazardous air quality and limited sunshine in Southern Oregon is getting to him.

"I feel cooped up, kind of restricted," began Worst.

"I feel a little more anxious when i'm outside [...] I don't feel like breathing deep."

He's not alone.

"Frankly we're kind of surprised we're not seeing as much inhaled problems as we thought," began Dr. Alan Bates who practices at Creekside Family Medicine in Medford.

"And we're seeing more people coming just kind of anxious and depressed about this. They're getting tired of it. It's wearing them down," said Dr. Bates.

Meantime, Paul Worst was fortunate enough to get out of the area for a while. But now he's returned and it's back to hunkering down.

Dr. Bates said if you're getting anxious or depressed you can purchase a lightbox which is a lamp that emits the same wavelength as the sun. NBC 5's Dr. Robin Miller got hers at Costco. You can also buy it through various merchants online.

Or you can do what Paul Worst did and take a trip somewhere without the smoke.

What do you think? Sound off on our Facebook page and on Twitter, or leave a comment below.

About the Author

Christine Pitawanich

Christine Pitawanich was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. In 2010, she received a master's degree in Broadcast Journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in New York.

Christine also has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from the University of Washington.

Before joining the NBC5 News team, she had the opportunity to file reports from Washington D.C. for WFFT FOX Ft. Wayne News in Indiana. Christine has also interned at KOMO-TV in Seattle.

Christine loves to ski, try new food and have fun in the outdoors.

Catch Christine anchoring weekdays on NBC 5 News at 5pm.

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