>U Mom Knows Best: How Light Therapy Helps With Seasonal Affective Disorder

Friday, January 31, 2020

How Light Therapy Helps With Seasonal Affective Disorder

A case of the winter blues may SAD


          I received a sample from Carex to facilitate the post

 I don't like winter for so many reasons. Winter means it is cold outside and the days are shorter in the sense that the sun is out less. Then there are way too many days that the sun is covered by clouds. The cold temperatures mean that we have to run the heat in the house and that can dry out my skin and cause my hands to have sore cracks around the fingertips. The cold weather keeps me inside and all I want to do is hibernate under a soft warm blanket. I have to force myself to get out of bed most days. Most days I just don't have the energy to get anything done.

 The change of seasons leaves me SAD in more ways than one. My SAD, Seasonal affective disorder,  starts around the time that we change the clocks and does not go away until the next time we change the time on our clocks. For most people, the winter may bring on the winter blues but for people with SAD it is a type of depression that can be tough to deal with. My SAD has become better over the years as I have learned to better manage it and have learned about different treatments that can help with my SAD symptoms.



Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that's related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year

  The best thing that has helped my seasonal depression was moving to a state that has a shorter winter and has more days with full sunshine. I grew up in the midwest so the long winters and the snow really affected me with my depression. Now I live in New Mexico and the weather is not as cold. Our cold season is usually from November to March. The temperatures can range from 20-50 degrees in the winter. We still get some snow but it is mostly in the mountains. When we do get snow by my house, it usually melts by noon. For the most part, the days are sunny unless it is snowing up in the mountains. Some years, like this year, the mountains have been getting a lot of snow. While that makes the skiers happy, it does not make me happy as the lack of sunshine leaves me with symptoms of SAD.


Check out how a unique coffee helps with my seasonal depression with These Healthy Ways To Say Goodbye To The Winter Blues 




 Treatment for SAD may include light therapy

 This winter has been cold and dreary with very few days of full sunshine. So my seasonal depression has really sapped my energy. I have tried to be proactive to make some changes in my day and have been following these tips to help with winter blues. The tips that have been helping my mood the most have been exercising first thing in the day and a Carex Day-Light Classic Plus. I finally decided that I needed to try light therapy this year for my seasonal depression and I am glad that I did. The Mayo Clinic suggests using light therapy for the treatment of Seasonal Affective Disorder. A simple light has really helped me with my mood and my energy.

 My living room does not get much light in the winter as it is in the back of the house. This is the room that I sit in to do my work as it has comfortable furniture. The rooms in the front of the house that do get the most sunshine are the dining room and my photo studio. On the few sunny days, I would work in the front rooms but it tended to be uncomfortable. That also did not help on the sunless dreary dark days in the winter.



Don't brush off that yearly feeling as simply a case of the "winter blues" or a seasonal funk that you have to tough out on your own. Take steps to keep your mood and motivation steady throughout the year



 So I am glad that I tried a Carex Day-Light Classic Plus. I was so excited when my full-spectrum therapy light arrived. I placed the LED light behind my favorite chair. My family thought it was just an ordinary light but I knew that this lamp was so much more and reminded my kids about why I am so happy to see the sunshine. My favorite song in the winter is "The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow."

 Since my therapy lamp arrived in the late afternoon, I did not get to try it that day. The next day it rained most of the day so it was a perfect day to try out my lamp for light therapy. I turned on the clinical strength sun lamp at the high setting. This therapy light has two settings. Then I sat down to get some work done on my computer. The light made me feel like the sun was shining outside. After I answered a couple of emails, I notice that I did not feel tired wanting that cup of coffee.

 So I left the sun therapy light on behind me and continued to get my work done. I almost forgot that it was raining outside until I glanced at the front of the house. The front room was dark but my room seemed so bright. The therapy light was definitely more than a bright light to me. It was an awesome thing for my mood. This light was making a big difference in my mood. I even felt like listening to music, something I never want to do in the winter as I am not able to concentrate with any noise in the background.

Lack of sunshine can affect overall wellness



 Did you know that the lack of sunshine can affect things like your sleep, energy levels, mood, and even your health? I know that when I don't get my daily sunshine, I have trouble sleeping that night and none of these 10 sleep tips for better sleep help. Too many nights with bad sleep can lead to health problems and even can cause you to get into a car accident. Studies show that more car accidents happen with daylight savings. So you may have SAD and a simple therapy light may make a difference. You only need to use the Carex Day-Light Classic Plus for 20-30 minutes a day for benefits.

Signs and symptoms of SAD may include:

+ Feeling depressed most of the day, nearly every day
+ Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
+ Having low energy
+ Having problems with sleeping
+ Experiencing changes in your appetite or weight
+ Feeling sluggish or agitated
+ Having difficulty concentrating
+Feeling hopeless, worthless or guilty
+ Having frequent thoughts of death or suicide


How bright light therapy works
 Scientists believe that bright light therapy works on different levels, producing a combined beneficial effect. When used at an appropriate morning hour (or in rare cases, evening hour), it corrects the misalignment of the internal body clock, known as the circadian rhythm, with external night and day.

Invest in your health

 Your first thought may be a therapy lamp may cost a lot and you may buy a smaller cheaper therapy light. The smaller lights for therapy don't deliver the maximum dose of the light need for optimal light therapy. The Carex Day-Light Classic Plus has 10,000 LUX which means you don't have to sit super close to the lamp and you get the best dosage of sunlight therapy. You can save 20% with my code MOMKNOWSBEST15 on the therapy sun lamp that is now my best friend in the winter. So I think my new winter song may be " Good Day Sunshine" as now I don't have to wait for the sun to come out!

Interested in learning more about light therapy? 
 Read the Ultimate Guide to Light Therapy here:

How Bright Light Therapy Works 



Save 20% with my code MOMKNOWSBEST15 HERE 

It was hard to get a good photo of the therapy lamp when it is on but trust me this light is bright and amazing!




24 comments:

  1. I have always had a bit of SAD but it was worse this past fall/winter than it's ever been. I didn't get a light but I've heard it can be super beneficial. Some things that help me are paying attention to the extra minute of sunlight we get a day, and also traveling somewhere warm for winter. That's not always an option, though! I'll look into this.

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  2. I have my light on while I sit here, a HappyLight that I use all winter season long. Light therapy really does help those of us who are impacted by the shorter days.

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  3. I honestly haven't really heard much about light therapy. This is something I'd really like to look more in to though. It sounds really interesting.

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  4. Excellent tips for something that affects so many. We live in Arizona where it's always sunny.

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  5. My mother does light therapy for one of her conditions. It seems to help her.

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  6. I also have SAD too although it's been a little better this year. We've had a really warm and sunny winter so far.

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    1. Our winter has been the opposite and we have had way to many dark days

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  7. I struggle during the winter season as well. It's hard when you're up and at work before the sunrise and driving back home in the dark. I haven't tried light therapy as of yet but I've heard incredible things about it.

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  8. When i lived in NY my SAD was out of control. It was the worst and I had no idea what was causing it. I ended up getting UV light therapy and it changed my life. But I didn’t have one of those nifty contraptions. I went and laid in a booth similar to a tanning booth but without the bronze after effects.

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    1. That is awesome to hear that it changed your life

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  9. I suffer from depression and it's always worse in the winter. I do take a vitamin D supplement but I have been thinking about getting therapy lamp.

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  10. Thank you for sharing your story with us! I've never heard about SAD disorder and I understand how difficult this can be for you!

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  11. Light therapy makes such a huge difference when it comes to SAD. I moved from the cloudy gloomy midwest to sunny southwest Florida and it's done wonders for my mental health!

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  12. I definitely suffer with SAD -- it was much better when I lived in TX, but unfortunately we moved to upstate NY 11 years ago. I have been using a small light for a long time -- I think it helps, too.

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  13. I swear by light lamps / light therapy lamps. They have helped me so much. I'm trying to get out more now that the days aren't as cold, but these are a great substitute.

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  14. I've been really wanting to get a light therapy lamp. I had a veterinarian that I worked with that used one and swore by it. I'll definitely need to invest.

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  15. I heard a lot of good things about light therapy. It is one of the simplest ones I've known. What a nice stress reliever.

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  16. I actually love the nights that get dark earlier! I love to settle in when it gets dark. But I do have several friends that have SAD and most of them are aware of and do light therapy. I will see if they are familiar with this particular item.

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  17. Good thing my desk is infront of a window which I can get sun all, but still I go out to get some sun. Sharing this with friends to be aware as well.

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  18. This would be great for people that live in areas where it's super wintery. I live in Texas, so I'm lucky I can usually get outside year around. Lacking Vitamin D is something you don't realize was affecting until you get enough of it! Thank you for sharing - this could help a lot of people.

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  19. THis is a great concept and if it helps anyone who suffers from SAD then its a great idea.

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