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Benefits of Light therapy

Benefits of Bright Light Therapy for Seasonal Affective Disorder

Written by Integrative Health Daily Staff

Exploring the Benefits of Bright Light Therapy for Seasonal Affective Disorder

One of the primary benefits of bright light therapy is its effectiveness in treating Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Since the 1980s, when Rosenthal and colleagues first identified SAD, bright light therapy has emerged as a leading treatment. The benefits of bright light therapy extend beyond just addressing SAD symptoms; they also play a crucial role in aligning the biological clock and managing serotonin levels, making it a versatile treatment option for various mood disorders.

 

Benefits of Bright Light Therapy in Modern Lifestyles

In today’s indoor-centric lifestyle, there’s a significant mismatch in natural light exposure. This lack of sunlight exposure, which is a key benefit of bright light therapy, can lead to disruptions in bodily rhythms, impacting everything from sleep to mood. The benefits of bright light therapy are particularly important as this treatment mimics natural sunlight, helping to regulate these rhythms. Dr. Charles Raison has pointed out that exposure to natural light during the day and maintaining darkness at night are critical for managing depression, a condition where the benefits of bright light therapy are increasingly recognized.

 

Effective Use and Selection of  Light Therapy Devices

When choosing a light device, it’s important to consider various factors to maximize the benefits of bright light therapy. The Center for Environmental Therapeutics report that the device should ideally provide 10,000 lux of illumination, have a substantial screen size (above 200 sq inches) to ensure consistent light exposure, and filter out harmful UV rays. White light is the standard for spectrum, and the angle of the light should minimize glare. These criteria are crucial to ensure that users receive the full benefits of light therapy.

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Embrace the Healing Power of Light

The benefits of bright light therapy are undeniable, especially in treating conditions like Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and various forms of depression. This therapy offers a natural, non-invasive way to align your body’s internal clock, improve mood, and enhance overall well-being. With modern lifestyles leading to reduced exposure to natural sunlight, bright light therapy stands out as hope for those struggling with low moods and disrupted circadian rhythms. 

In Summary

If you find yourself feeling down, especially during the darker months, consider trying bright light therapy. It’s a simple yet effective way to lift your spirits and restore balance to your life. Remember, the key to reaping the full benefits of light therapy lies in choosing the right device and using it consistently. Working with an integrative provider can also help with guiding your treatment to gain the benefits of multiple approaches for mood enhancement. Check out our directory to find a provider in your area.

Take the first step towards brighter days. Explore the benefits of bright light therapy and see how a little light can make a big difference in your life.

1. Campbell, P. D., Miller, A. M., & Woesner, M. E. (2017). Bright Light Therapy: Seasonal Affective Disorder and Beyond. *Einstein Journal of Biology and Medicine, 32*, E13-E25. PMID: 31528147; PMCID: PMC6746555.

2. Center for Environmental Therapeutics. (n.d.). How to select a light box. Retrieved from https://cet.org/how-to-select-a-light-box/

3. HealthMatch. (n.d.). The best lights for Seasonal Affective Disorder. Retrieved from https://healthmatch.io/seasonal-affective-disorder/the-best-lights-for-seasonal-affective-disorder#side-effects

4. FoundMyFitness. (2019, August 28). Blue light exposure and the importance of darkness at night as it relates to depression. Retrieved from https://www.foundmyfitness.com/episodes/blue-light-darkness-night-depression

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