Are you feeling the winter blues? Daylight therapy might help!

It is estimated that 17% of the UK population suffer from the winter blues. Seasonal affective disorder can increasingly affect your mood and energy levels due to a lack of sunlight experienced

The winter period is approaching and days are becoming increasingly shorter while the night sky lengthens. During the winter months, we are exposed to less sunlight which causes our body to produce less serotonin but more melatonin; a hormone that prepares the body for sleep. This can trick your body into believing it should constantly be in the state of rest or sleep; affecting your mood, alertness and energy levels.

Winter blue SAD symptoms

Is the weather getting you down? You might suffer from seasonal affective disorder.
Is the weather getting you down? You might be suffering from seasonal affective disorder.

It is estimated that the majority of the population are exposed to less than one hour of sunlight during the frosty winter months with less than 10% of the population working in natural outdoor light. That leaves 90% of the population longing to see the sunlight as we spend the majority of the short winter hours snuggling up inside at the local coffee shop or our work office. With longer work hours, it is no surprise that more and more people are feeling the winter blues and suffering from seasonal affective disorder.

People rush to get inside in the winter months and envision the cosy winter fires, but this can all contribute to our lethargic and sleepy moods. As the winter months approach, if you do start to feel groggy and tired or want to rush indoors for a cosy nap by the fire, then you might benefit from using daylight therapy.

SAD syndrome symptoms

Feeling the winter blues? Here are some symptoms to look out for to determine whether you are suffering from seasonal affective disorder:

  • Feeling lethargic, low energy levels, unable to attend usual daily activities
  • Sleeplessness disorder, difficulty staying awake during the day, but troublesome nights
  • Loss of libido, lower sex drive
  • Anxiety, panic attacks
  • Social problems, become an introvert, longing to stay indoors
  • Depression, gloomy mood for no apparent reason
  • Craving unhealthy foods, leading to weight gain

Antidepressant lamps for seasonal affective disorder

Daylight therapy has been successful treating 85% of people with seasonal affective disorder. It exposes the body to light levels replicating natural sunlight; awakening the body and mind to accept that it is daytime so that it needs to become more alert and active.

As mentioned previously in this article, the chemicals in your body can be balanced by natural sunlight or in the winter months by using a lightbox for treating SAD depression. The antidepressant lamps inform the body to stop producing the chemical melatonin which causes drowsiness and prepares you for sleep, but instead to start producing serotonin which awakens you.

Lightbox for SAD depression – The Litebook range

Light therapy - Lightbook Edge
Light therapy – Litebook Edge

The Litebook range is a popular choice for many SAD sufferers due to it’s safety, testing and success stories. Using white-light emitting diodes (LEDs) to produce and imitate sunlight; keeping the Litebook range more compact and easy-to-use than traditional antidepressant lamps.

Due to the peak wavelengths that it produces replicating natural sunlight, usage time is shortened to as little as 15 minutes a day. To use the Litebook range, all you need to do is to place the device on a stable space nearby where you are sitting, at a 45 degree angle. Unlike traditional antidepressant lamps, this device provides you with the therapy you need while you carry on with your everyday activities, rather than having to stare directly into it for a period of time.

Litebook ADVANTAGE vs Litebook EDGE

Litebook Advantage - Great value SAD lamp
Litebook Advantage – Great value SAD lamp

If you are looking for a compact, great value lightbox for treating your SAD depression, then the Litebook ADVANTAGE is a great option to consider. Emitting 10,000 lux, it can treat your winter blue feelings in just 15 minutes. It is slighter larger and heavier than the Litebook EDGE and it does have to be powered by a mains socket unlike the EDGE. It is however a very popular choice as it is still remarkably advanced compared to traditional light-boxes and is an affordable option.

If however you are looking for a portable light therapy device that is palm-sized, then the Litebook EDGE is a greater option for you to consider. Emitting 10,000 lux, it also can treat SAD symptoms in just 15 minutes of daily use. The EDGE is battery operated allowing you to use your therapy wherever you might need it. While it is slightly more expensive than the ADVANTAGE, it’s a popular choice for many winter blues sufferers for its compact and efficient design.

Interested to find out more information about daylight therapy solutions? Discover the Litebook ADVANTAGE and Litebook EDGE here. Any questions? Get in touch by emailing us at contact@intushealthcare.eu and we’ll be more than happy to answer any questions that you might have.

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