Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which is now clinically known as major depression with seasonal characteristics, is a disease that causes sadness or depression with SAD Lamps for Seasonal Affective Disorder.
It most typically occurs in autumn and winter, when the days are shorter and the time exposed to the sun is reduced. It is most common in women and young people.
Counseling, treatment, and medication may all be effective in this situation. Lightboxes (also called SAD lights) are another option that can reduce symptoms and relieve symptoms. They work by copying natural light.
We will explain how the SAD lamp works and how it looks when purchased. And check out our 5 favorite lights and why.
What to look for in SAD lights
There are many lamps and lightboxes sold as SAD lamps on the market. Not all of these products are effective or suitable for this purpose.
SAD lamps are not regulated by the FDA, so be sure to purchase lamps that provide enough light and are used to treat the seasonal affective disorder.
Here are some features to look for:
- Don’t get a lightbox designed to treat skin conditions. These devices are not designed to treat mood disorders and are not effective.
- Make sure that the bulb filters out UV rays and are marked as UV free. Ultraviolet rays can damage the eyes and skin.
- The lamp should produce a cool white fluorescent lamp of 10,000 lux. Lux is the combination of light intensity and area. The output of 10,000 lux is approximately 20 times the light output produced by most indoor lighting. Less bright lights may require more frequent use of low-light lights.
- Please buy a glare-free lamp, or place it face down to reduce or eliminate eye glare.
- Look for a lamp with a surface area of approximately 12 x 15 inches. The larger the surface area, the higher the illuminance. Larger bulbs also provide you with more mobility options, and you can stay away from them without affecting the efficiency of the bulb.
- Smaller lights do not work well and may take longer to use. That said, if you travel a lot, you might want to buy a second, smaller lamp. Your doctor can provide you with a personalized light bulb usage guide.
Personal style and needs
- Think about the activity you want to perform while using the light bulb, and then buy activities that meet that purpose.
- The style of the lamp varies. It is best to buy a lamp that is attractive and matches your decoration so that it can be used permanently. In order to get the most benefit, you will need to use the bulb at least once a day, so it is best to take it out and make it easy to use.
Five SAD lights to consider
Price range guide:
- $ (Less than $ 100)
- $$ (between $100-$200)
- $$$ (above $200)
The lamp has a large surface area of 15.5 x 13.5 inches. It produces 10,000 lux of light and projects light downward, regardless of its position, without glare.
The light stand is adjustable, so it can be used comfortably regardless of your height or chair type. Users say that it will not swing, and can quickly reach the maximum lumen, thereby obtaining the greatest benefit.
In addition to having a brightness of 10,000 lux and a large screen, these SAD Lamps for Seasonal Affective Disorder can also be used for a long time. Seven years or more after purchase, many users are full of praise.
The lamp contains a long-lasting fluorescent lamp, no UV. It also has five different height levels and is easy to adjust. Note that it weighs 11 pounds, which is heavier than many other bulbs.
If you like the appearance of modern decor, this light may be perfect for you. It has 10,000 lux LEDs, no UV, full-spectrum white light, and three brightness levels, so you can increase or decrease the amount of light received.
Many users prefer LEDs to fluorescent lamps because of their longer lifespan. The lamp has a small surface area and a fixed position, which cannot be adjusted. Even so, it is an excellent second light for travel or small spaces.
For those who want to place the SAD light near a treadmill or glider, this 46-inch high light is a good choice. It can also be neatly placed in the corner for easy use while reading or watching TV.
This floor lamp provides a full spectrum of 10,000 lux, no UV, LED lights, and no glare, and adjustable. Users like sturdy design and durable light bulbs, which usually last for about five years. Need to assemble.
The lightbox has shown trusted sources to help with jet lag. Although the screen size of this portable option is smaller than the recommended size, its size and cost are still worth the money.
Designed for portable use, this light can provide 10,000 lux brightness and one-button control.
How to use SAD lights to treat a seasonal affective disorder
- Do not start using SAD lights without the approval of your doctor. This is especially important if you have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, glaucoma, or lupus.
- If you take any kind of prescription drugs, including antipsychotics and antidepressants, make sure that your doctor agrees. Keep in mind that some prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs can make your skin photosensitive, so the use of light bulbs needs to be adjusted. These medications include lithium, some acne medications, and St. John’s wort.
- Use the bulb every day until the day is increased.
- Trial time frame. Many people have found benefits from just 20 minutes of use. Others need 60 minutes, which is usually considered the highest exposure you should get.
- Consider when and how often to use it. Many experts recommend using SAD lights first in the morning. Your doctor may also recommend that you use it during the day. Remember, more is not always better. Overuse of SAD lights may cause insomnia or other side effects.
- Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. Your bulb should come with recommendations to indicate how close you should position the bulb. This is very important because your distance affects the illuminance of the bulb.
- Adjust the position of the bulb so that it provides you with downward light without directly hitting your eyes.
- The bulb should not be placed directly in front of you but at an angle. This will also protect your eyes.
- Discuss with your doctor how best to stop using the bulb. Weaning slowly may be the most suitable option. Spending time outdoors, especially in the morning, can help this process.
How SAD lights can help treat a seasonal affective disorder
SAD lights simulate sunlight. This helps trigger the brain to release serotonin, which is often referred to as the feel-good hormone.
According to the research of “Trusted Sources”, during the short time of the day, the use of light therapy can help you to adjust the circadian rhythm, which is the process by which the body regulates the sleep-wake cycle. This is very helpful for relaxing the mood at night and reducing depression.
Light therapy has become a recognized method to relieve many diseases, such as:
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
- jet lag
- Circadian rhythm sleep disorder
Other treatments for seasonal affective disorder
Active lifestyle changes can usually alleviate the seasonal affective disorder. These include:
- Go to bed early and wake up at or near dawn
- Go out for a long time, especially in the morning
- Avoid substances that adversely affect your ability to sleep, such as alcohol
- Eat healthy food
Consultation with a mental health professional and taking antidepressants may also be beneficial.
Major depression with a seasonal pattern, formerly known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD), is caused by reduced sunlight exposure or seasonal changes. Women and young people are most affected by this situation.
Using SAD lights (also called lightboxes) can help reduce symptoms and enhance mood.
They may be effective when used as a single treatment or in combination with other forms of treatment. Either way, always use these lights under the guidance of a doctor.