Do you notice that you become more tired and depressed during the winter months? Then you might suffer from
Though there are many different treatments for
How does light therapy work?
Light therapy decreases symptoms of
You're supposed to sit close to a light therapy box for at least 30 minutes per day, usually as soon as you wake up. These boxes typically provide 10,000 lux of light, which is about 100 times greater than the natural light found inside. A bright sunny day outside usually has 50,000 lux or more. The key is to keep your eyes open. You don't have to stare directly at the
Not all light boxes are the same
- Get approval from your doctor first. Make sure that you actually have a diagnosis of
seasonalaffective disorder before beginning light therapy. Discuss treatment options with your doctor and get approval to use a light therapy box.
- Buy a lamp that is designed to treat
seasonalaffective disorder. There are lots of light therapy lamps on the market, and some of them are used for different things. Choose one that is specifically designed to treat symptoms associated with seasonalaffective disorder.
- Look for a product that has been clinically tested. You should find a light therapy box that has been clinically tested. Make sure to do thorough research before deciding on a light therapy box.
- Choose a light therapy box with the right kind of light. The most common are blue light boxes and full spectrum light boxes. Blue light boxes decrease seasonal affective disorder symptoms faster than other types of light. Full spectrum light boxes are considered to be the best at mimicking natural light. Speak with your doctor about the best kind of light for your symptoms.
- Use a light therapy box that emits at least 10,000 lux. If you buy a light box that emits less than that, you're just wasting your money.
- Invest in a light box that filters out ultraviolet rays. These rays can cause premature aging. Locate a light box that has minimal ultraviolet rays.
- Purchase a larger
light box. The larger the light box, the more light it produces, which means the more effective it will be in treating seasonalaffective disorder.
So, does light therapy actually work?
Yes -- light therapy has been both clinically and empirically proven to treat symptoms of