How can light therapy help you fight seasonal depression
How can light therapy help you fight seasonal depression?
Whether we are talking about a real seasonal depression or a temporary blues when the days get shorter, many people are affected by the lack of light during the winter. The consequences vary from person to person and can range from sleep disorders, depression and lack of concentration. Light therapy is one of the solutions recommended by health professionals. Let’s demystify the phenomenon!
What is light therapy?
Light therapy is the exposure to light from a specially designed lamp that seeks to replace the effects of natural sunlight on your body. In the northern countries, we have to spend several months where the days are much shorter, in addition to the natural light being less powerful. This lack of brightness affects us and bright light therapy is used to compensate for this lack.
The technique will allow your body to regulate your body clock and continue to produce melatonin as normal. Indeed, the lack of light often means a problem with melatonin secretion, since melatonin is secreted during the night. When our sleep cycle is affected or disrupted, so is our melatonin secretion.
Integrate light therapy into your routine
It is very important to incorporate light therapy into your daily routine, especially if your symptoms are severe. A break of only a few days could make them reappear. Ideally, you should be exposed to the light of your light therapy lamp for at least 30 minutes every day. The best time to enjoy exposure to light is in the morning. You could plan your morning routine accordingly, integrating the lamp into your beauty routine, your newspaper reading or your breakfast.
The important thing is to be in front of the lamp, at a distance of about 30 cm, and keep your eyes open. The idea is to find out how you can make it part of your routine so that it happens naturally and you don’t even have to think about it anymore.
Choosing the right light therapy lamp
The good news is that light therapy is becoming more and more popular, which means that many products have appeared on the market in recent years.
Light therapy lamps can usually be found in pharmacies, department stores, medical equipment stores and some health food stores.
It is essential to choose a lamp with a light intensity of at least 10,000 lux. This is the minimum intensity that will allow you to benefit from it.
Since light must be absorbed by the eyes, as a general rule, the larger it is and takes up a large part of your field of vision, the more effective it will be.
Also make sure to choose a white light lamp, containing all the colors of the light spectrum. Thus, avoid LED lights, which are only bluish.
Choose a model that suits your lifestyle and the use you plan to make of it. You may prefer a more fixed and solid model if you plan to leave it in the same place at all times, or a smaller and lighter model if you think you will have to carry it often.
Whichever model you choose, make sure you read the instructions carefully. Wishing you a good dose of light for these sometimes difficult winter months!