The post-holiday syndrome

Written by: Juan José Carral Hernández
Edited by: Top Doctors®

What is post-holiday syndrome?

Although it can really be said that this syndrome "does not exist", practically everyone who returns on vacation has it, especially if they have small children or if the holidays have been quite short, since then the feeling of rest or disconnection of daily stress, it has not been enough.

The post-holiday syndrome, post-holiday stress or post-holiday depression , tries to describe those negative physiological and emotional symptoms that arise when people return from vacations and have to readapt to the work routine after a period with much more flexible schedules and more playful activities.


What are the symptoms?

Many of the symptoms of this post-holiday syndrome are not different from the typical physical symptoms of anxiety: palpitations, difficulty breathing, uncontrollable tremors, desire to cry, sweating ... These symptoms are accompanied by a feeling of low mood , decay, lack of energy, feeling of distaste and feeling of not being able to adapt to the usual routine.

Who usually present it to the greatest extent?

It is a syndrome that above all have people who have had or have problems at work, either of work mobbing (harassment at work), that their work does not present a special gratification, endless hours of work or possible problems of dismissal (or FEARED), needless to say that the current economic situation makes the cases of post-holiday syndrome have increased.

Another quite common group is that of parents with small children or people who have been dependent on dependents during the holidays. Usually during the day to day, children and dependents are usually in school or in places where they are cared for. During the summer period, on the other hand, both children and dependents are cared for by these parents or caregivers who are already tired from their work period and who during holidays are subjected to a significant stress, so when they return from vacation, the feeling of rest is practically minimal and facing a new work period becomes very uphill.  

What is the most recommended treatment?

The post-holiday syndrome is not classified as a disorder and it is significantly rare that people who suffer from it have to go to therapy for these symptoms, however prevent the onset of this symptomatology so annoying if possible following exercises such as those described below:

Anticipate the return home in a timely manner and not wait "at the last minute" or "hold on vacation as much as possible". Gradual habituation is key.

Regarding schedules and activities: it is important to maintain regular schedules , both during the day and at night. You can continue with healthy habits that have been carried out in the holidays as a moderate exercise, walks, go to the pool if the weather is still good. It is also advisable to sleep for the maximum number of hours possible and to reduce them gradually as the week progresses.

Regarding the intensity of work: start from less to more. Start with the simplest tasks or those that require less effort and gradually intensifying. It is advisable that the first day the activity be dedicated to socialize with coworkers, so that the return is less intense. It is important during the first days or weeks, not to occupy the space dedicated to leisure or rest with more work.

It is advisable to perform relaxation exercises to prevent the onset of anxiety symptoms.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection
 Juan José Carral Hernández

By Juan José Carral Hernández

Featured psychologist with extensive experience in family and couples therapy, bullying and other disorders in clinical psychology. Collaborates in the research team of the Institute of the Family of the Pontifical University of Comillas, and practicing psychologist two prestigious centers of Madrid.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

This website uses its own and third-party cookies to collect information in order to improve our services, to show you advertising related to your preferences, as well as to analyse your browsing habits..