10 Tips for buying SAD lights

If you have been diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder and given light therapy as part of your treatment, you will need to find a SAD therapy light box that best suits your needs.  To help with this we have 10 Tips for buying SAD Lights. Ensure the SAD Light is medically certified Any reputable and proven SAD light will have been certified and registered by the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency).  This ensures that the SAD light box will work and is safe to use to current standards.  This will be indicated with a CE mark which should be listed on the product listing on the website you buy from and the device and box it comes in. How long do you have for a SAD light therapy treatment? Depending on how busy your lifestyle is you may need to choose your SAD light based on how quickly a treatment takes.  SAD lights typically have the light therapy treatment times listed on retailer and manufacturer websites, and on the units themselves.  The amount of Lux is an indicator of how long the treatment may be.  The minimum is 2,500 lux for any light therapy treatment and typically will take longer than say 10,000 lux which many LED SAD lights emit, and can reduce the time down from 2 hours to 15-20 minutes.  The effective distance to place the SAD light for treatment times will also vary depending on the lux emitted as well. Is that the time? Further to how much time you may have for a Seasonal Affective Disorder light therapy treatment, if you lead a...

Do SAD Light Therapy Boxes actually work?

The question of ‘Do SAD Light Therapy Boxes actually work?’ is often asked by both individuals who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder and Medical professionals alike. A number of independent reviews, testing and studies have been undertaken for a number of years and continue to be investigated across the medical community worldwide.  This has been done to establish not only the best possible treatment for those who are affected by SAD, but also to see exactly how our eyes process the numerous wavelengths of light.  In turn the latter part will help in understanding how the body functions are affected in response to the light. Opinions on SAD Light Therapy being effective are mixed and after collating and reviewing a great deal of research from the numerous studies conducted over the years, universally respected, global independent research network: Cochrane, concluded that due to a low quality of evidence, no definitive answer could be given as of yet. Studies into the effects that light in the Blue light wavelength has on the eyes led to the discovery of a corresponding light-sensitive receptor that may be instrumental in maintaining the Circadian Rhythms of the body through regulation of the sympathetic nervous system and Melatonin levels.  This has led to the introduction of SAD Therapy Blue Light Boxes that are designed for quicker and more effective treatments with less intense light overall. While a consensus is yet to be reached with definitive results, many Medical practitioners and those that suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder have found that medically certified SAD Light Therapy Boxes and Lamps do have positive results in treating Seasonal...

How does a SAD Light work?

If you or someone that you know has been recently diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder and were advised in having light therapy treatment by a Medical Professional such as you GP then you may find yourself wondering exactly ‘How does a SAD Light work?’. The basic idea behind how a SAD Light Therapy box works is to create a simulation of sunlight at the most convenient time for sufferers of Seasonal Affective Disorder so that the Melanopsin receptors in the eyes can trigger the required Serotonin release within the brain for natural sleep cycles and general feelings of well-being. In order for a SAD Lamp to provide the required amount of light for this Serotonin release it needs to emit light to a minimum of 2,500 lux (Lux is the unit of intensity light is measured in).  To achieve this bright intensity of light specific SAD bulbs were created for use in SAD light units which have diffusers to make the light from the bulbs softer on the eyes and also allow for a timed treatment so that you receive enough and not too much, or too little as both can affect your sleep pattern. More recently LED SAD lights have become more commonplace as they will emit 10,000 lux and last much longer before needing to be replaced.  The main advantage of the higher lux is that the greater intensity of light decreases treatment time, yet is just as effective as lower intensities.  This is ideal for individuals that lead busy lifestyles. On average in order for a SAD Light treatment to work, the unit should be placed...

Choosing a portable SAD Therapy Light

If you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder and light therapy treatment has been advised by your medical practitioner after a diagnosis then you need to find the right light box for your lifestyle.  As many of us lead busy lives, often on the move it can be tricky working a session into a daily routine whether at home or at work.  To help we have created a helpful guide to tell you what to look for when choosing a portable SAD Therapy Light. SAD Light Box Size One of the key factors in choosing a portable SAD Light box is the size, especially if you have limited space available to you to transport one in.  Most of the SAD therapy lights that are designed to be portable are relatively small in size with some being similar to a Blu-ray size and others a tablet computer so fit nicely into most bags and backpacks.  Another aspect to having a compact, portable SAD light is that if there is little space to place one on your desk, in a hotel room or just at home they are small enough to fit. Of course alternatively if you do have space to spare and prefer a larger Therapy Light then some models to include carry handles as well to be taken with you.     Blue or White SAD Therapy Light The majority of portable SAD Therapy Lights that are small enough to be carried around use LED lights in contrast to traditional ones that use bulbs.  This means that they tend to be brighter and give off 10,000 lux which helps to...

How effective is Orange Light with treating SAD?

Studies into how light affects our circadian rhythms and by extension can be used to treat Seasonal Affective Disorder are continually underway and revealing how different wavelengths may be more efficient than others.  A recent study into these wavelengths of light has questioned ‘How effective is Orange Light in particular in possibly treating SAD?’. As light therapy treatments have been shown to be effective in helping to treat Seasonal Affective Disorder, predominantly in the full-spectrum of white light and in the less intensive, but more effective blue light wavelength it stands to reason that other singled out colours may also impact melanopsin production. In 2014, Gilles Vandewalle and his team began studies at the University of Liege in Belgium into exactly how melanopsin is able to wake up the brain.  This was done by exposing a group of sixteen people to either blue or orange light for ten minutes before taking part in a memory test whilst being monitored in an fMRI scanner.  Afterwards the participants were blindfolded for an hour and ten minutes and then given the test again after being exposed to green light, which is besides being between both colours in the full spectrum, also lies in the middle in terms of making the pigment of melanopsin more light sensitive with orange being the most effective.  The results showed that Orange light caused more activity in regions associated with cognitive function and alertness. It should be noted that previous studies and real-world use of Blue Light SAD therapy lights has shown to be very effective in increasing alertness and helping to normalise the body’s circadian rhythms. ...