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S.A.D. Seasonal Affective Disorder:

SAD Seasonal Affective Disorder

For decades scientists have been studying S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and Light Therapy Treatment, and in the last decade SAD Lamp - Light Box Therapy has emerged as a very popular and effective method for treating S.A.D.

The change in light exposure is the key. As your light exposure decreases in the fall and winter, the general consensus of the experts is that these changes in light exposure affect the body's natural rhythm and chemistry and induce Seasonal Affective Disorder. When SAD Lamp - Light Box Therapy is introduced, the majority of us will experience relief from S.A.D.

SAD Lamps - Light Therapy Boxes are not just for winter use. For those who work in poorly lit offices, or have offices or cubicles that have no windows to let in sunlight - you will benefit from a light box. For those who work the night shift and miss out on the daytime sunlight, a light box will help you feel better.

"Seasonal Affective Disorder" is not only a seasonal issue, we have sold many units to people who work the night shift or work in a dark office cubicle and do not receive the needed full spectrum light to keep them happy and healthy.

Winter Blues was discovered in the early eighties by the National Institute of Health. The NIH estimates that over 36 million Americans suffer from a lack of energy or mood problems brought on by the winter months. Winter Blues causes you to feel down, gloomy, and lose energy. You may have difficulty concentrating and feeling alert, withdraw socially and have carbohydrate cravings. Winter Blues sufferers also experience sleep problems.

What causes winter blues?
Researchers agree that the lack of sunlight in the fall and winter causes the effects of Winter Blues. Without sunlight, the brain doesn't produce enough serotonin, which results in the symptoms of Winter Blues. The darker days also signal the brain to overproduce the hibernation hormone, melatonin. The symptoms diminish as the days get longer, although many Winter Blues sufferers note brief (1-2 week) periods of Winter Blues-like symptoms in the summer.

Treating winter blues with light therapy
The NIH has demonstrated that specialized bright light (a large field of 10,000 lux intensity) to be the most effective means of reversing the effects of this winter blues. Light therapy produces serotonin in the brain, and researchers believe low serotonin levels contribute to winter blues. Since this discovery, scientists have successfully used bright light to treat winter blues as well as other mood & energy problems with light therapy.

Light also suppresses the hibernation hormone melatonin. This is important, because melatonin forces us to pull back, conserve and sleep. Melatonin secretion is necessary during the night, but daytime melatonin can be harmful. By suppressing melatonin during the daytime, our activity cycle is extended, and we actually sleep better at night.

Light resets circadian rhythms 
Scientists also believe that Winter Blues is associated with shifted circadian rhythms (body clock). The body clock regulates our daily activity cycles, and it needs bright light signals to reset itself each day. When it doesn't receive this signal, it can malfunction. This can affect how you sleep and feel during the day. If you have difficulty waking up, or you fall asleep and wake up at the wrong time, you may have a circadian rhythm problem.

Body clock assessment tool
You can now take a test to see if you have a circadian rhythm problem. The assessment tool will let you know which circadian rhythm problem you may have as well as its degree of severity. Since our body clocks react differently, this assessment tool will also develop a customized treatment schedule so you can respond as quickly as possible.