What is Light Therapy?
Light Therapy is a safe and natural treatment that involves exposing yourself to either daylight (which is not really possible in the winter months) or specific wavelengths of light from a light box/lamp. The light that comes from the light therapy box mimics natural sunlight found outdoors. It is recommended that the light box/lamp be used in the morning for the best results (afternoon is fine but always before 5pm to avoid insomnia). While it is not recommended that you stare directly at the light, do you do want your body/face to be oriented towards the light. I crochet while I use my light box. Others read, eat their morning meal or work on their computer.
How Does it Work?
Sunlight is necessary for our brains to create serotonin. Serotonin is a mood regulating neurotransmitter, which when produced in adequate levels, helps to lift your mood and alleviate other symptoms of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) such as fatigue, brain fog and low levels of motivation. Exposure to light also reduces our levels of melatonin (the hormone that helps us sleep) which is why light therapy is effective against the fatigue related symptoms of SAD/winter blues.
My First Light Therapy Experience
My light therapy lamp arrived in the mail yesterday evening, sadly too late for me to use it. I ordered my light therapy product from Costco and the link can be found here. If you don’t have a Costco membership you can also buy the product through Amazon.
After monkey man when down for his nap I finally got to use my lamp for the first time. While they do suggest morning use is optimal, it’s just not possible for me with a toddler to chase around. I opted to have the light on low (as they suggest for afternoon use) and I sat in front of it for about 45 minutes. It was definitely brighter than I anticipated and it did give me a slight headache (which I’ve read is not uncommon). I would love to say I had immediate results, but that is unrealistic (even for someone as impatient as me). All I can say is that I did have more energy in the afternoon than I usually do. I typically want to take a nap right when it’s time for my son to wake up and today I didn’t feel that way.
I will keep you all posted in a few weeks and let you know how daily use is impacting my life.
Thanks for reading! Sending happy and sunny thoughts your way.