Light Therapy for Winter Blues or SAD: Seasonal Affective Disorder
Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD is also called Winter Blues. For some people with depression, their mood worsens as the day time gets shorter. Studies have shown that medication, increased exercise – especially outdoors – and light therapy all can help decrease the depression symptoms.
Light therapy is very interesting. Several studies in USA and abroad have indicated that light therapy can be very effective and is most effective when combined with therapy and medication.
If you look online you will see many companies offering light therapy lamps ranging in price, size and features. There are many things to consider before you buy. For specific information, go to www.mayoclinic.com/health/seasonal-affective-disorder-treatment/DN00013
Generally, you need to consider the following:
Another way to get sunlight is to go where the sun is shining. If you can possibly plan a vacation to a sunny place, Florida, Arizona, California, this would optimum.
What about using in-door grow lights? They mimic sunlight right? The National Institute of Mental Health is currently funding a study to look at this. They are seeking subjects. For details, go to www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT00114322
Catherine A. Lavoie, APRN
September 22, 2011