Skip to comments.Therapy: Lighting Up a Life, Literally
Posted on 04/22/2005 12:09:23 PM PDT by neverdem
Exposure to bright artificial light can relieve some cases of depression as effectively as psychotherapy or antidepressant medication, new research suggests.
In a statistical review of 20 rigorously designed studies, researchers found strong evidence that exposure to artificial broad-spectrum light was a good treatment not only for seasonal affective disorder, in which people become more depressed in the darker days of winter, but for the more common nonseasonal depression. The review appears in the April issue of The American Journal of Psychiatry.
Dr. Robert N. Golden, professor and chairman of psychiatry at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine and the lead author, said he was once skeptical of such treatments.
"I noticed that there were a lot of really bad studies being published" that claimed good results based on weak evidence, Dr. Golden said. "But when you throw out the bad studies and look at the good ones, the data are actually very impressive."
Light therapy usually involves sitting in front of white fluorescent lights with eyes open but not looking directly at the light source. Treatment time varies from 15 minutes to 90 minutes a day.
Dawn simulation, a variation of the treatment, recreates the timing and intensity of a normal sunrise each morning. Symptoms can start to diminish within weeks.
Dr. Golden warns that the studies have not been large and that the standards for what constitutes exactly the right exposure have not yet been established.
I wonder how much is just psychosomatic: "It is dark; therefore I am dark". It makes perfect sense. Tanning baths would work wonders too, IMHO.
Thanks to our all knowing, all caring, hellova lot smarter than us, US Congress-the symptoms will diminish eight weeks later next year- so stock your winter survival kit with an extra case of Jim Beam, ten more cases of beer, and extra candles.
If daylight saving time is so benefical for some of the year, why not all of the year? If it is so wonderful to spring ahead for one hour, just imagine the benefits of a quantam leap of two hours or the pure ecstacy of jumping a full twenty four hours.............er,.....never mind.
No doubt. And what a boon for dermatologists.
Flowers? In the dead of winter?
(Why do you suppose they call it the 'dead' of winter, hmmmmm?)
LOL! With a tag line like that-what can you possibly do for an encore?
Plenty. Stick around...
I went with my son to his future middle school open house this week.
There was a display of clay scuptures, one was a ship with toothpick masts.
I picked up one of the toothpicks that had fallen out and replaced it.
My darling son said, "Where are the sails?"
I said, "At the Mall."
He said, "I want a blood test"...
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