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S.A.D. and light therapy
Old 12-16-2007, 03:50 PM   #1
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S.A.D. and light therapy

Any recommendations/opinions on a light therapy box or a dawn simulator? I see some have LED now, which means low power consumption.

A few days back, I had to stop myself from gorging on food and I slept 10 hours. I realized it had been cloudy for several days.
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:07 PM   #2
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I use the Sadelite from Northern Light Technologies. I've had it for 12 years and just replaced the bulbs this year. I find it very effective.

Northern Light Technologies: Light Therapy Products for Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, Seasonal Depression, Winter Blues
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:27 PM   #3
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I use the Sadelite from Northern Light Technologies. I've had it for 12 years and just replaced the bulbs this year. I find it very effective.

Northern Light Technologies: Light Therapy Products for Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, Seasonal Depression, Winter Blues
I like the lighted hat you can wear. I wonder if this really works?
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:35 PM   #4
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I like the lighted hat you can wear.
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:07 PM   #5
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I have tried most of the "natural light" incandescent bulbs with varying success in my home office. I recently installed a regular Sylvania compact fluorescent and it seems to be the best yet...YMMV.
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:13 PM   #6
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I use to be a skeptic about light therapy. Then we got a assignment to Germany. It seems that winters in Germany are dark! Clouds all the time. Wives were in a miserable mood. Pilots, on the other hand, took off flew above the clouds. They were always in a good mood.

I still think debriefs at the O'Club could have had something to do with it.
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:17 PM   #7
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I still think debriefs at the O'Club could have had something to do with it.
Yeah, well whattya expect when you pull off your underwear in a bar...
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Old 12-16-2007, 06:49 PM   #8
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I can't complain about S.A.D., but when the barometer is down for the rain & winter windstorms I have sinus headaches, hunger urges, and long naps too. So is it possible that your feelings have to do more with allergies or sinus congestion than a lack of lumens?

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Yeah, well whattya expect when you pull off your underwear in a bar...
Regardless of the noun, I could never figure out why they were called "briefs"...
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Old 12-16-2007, 07:52 PM   #9
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I can't complain about S.A.D., but when the barometer is down for the rain & winter windstorms I have sinus headaches, hunger urges, and long naps too. So is it possible that your feelings have to do more with allergies or sinus congestion than a lack of lumens?
I've never had sinus headaches or allergies, and this combination of symptoms doesn't occur on cloudy summer days or sunny winter days.
---

I wonder if S.A.D. would explain Norse mythology?
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Old 12-18-2007, 09:11 AM   #10
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DW has problems with SAD. She has a Verilux light that has it's own stand and sits on a dresser next to the bed. I turn it on when I get up in the morning, it's part of the morning ritual for her.

November through January in Wisconsin are bad for gloomy cloudy days...........
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:47 PM   #11
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Any recommendations/opinions on a light therapy box or a dawn simulator? I see some have LED now, which means low power consumption.

A few days back, I had to stop myself from gorging on food and I slept 10 hours. I realized it had been cloudy for several days.
If I remember correctly, you live in Ohio, right, Khan? My sympathies! I spent 18 years in Cincinnati and suffered SAD every year for about 9 months, like pregnancy except no happy occasion at the end.
I did discover that taking St. John's Wort alleviated some of the symptoms. Taking REAL antidepressants also remedied the downers. Never tried the lights.

good luck!
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:53 PM   #12
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If I remember correctly, you live in Ohio, right, Khan? My sympathies! I spent 18 years in Cincinnati and suffered SAD every year for about 9 months, like pregnancy except no happy occasion at the end.
I did discover that taking St. John's Wort alleviated some of the symptoms. Taking REAL antidepressants also remedied the downers. Never tried the lights.

good luck!
Near Dayton.

Only get symptoms in extreme conditions (several cloudy days in a row in December or January).

I suppose I could just tough it out, but light therapy would be fairly cheap with minimal side effects.
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Old 12-18-2007, 09:07 PM   #13
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November through January in Wisconsin are bad for gloomy cloudy days...........
Followed by the also gloomy November through April period...... But I just love it May through October up there!
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Old 12-18-2007, 09:12 PM   #14
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Followed by the also gloomy November through April period...... But I just love it May through October up there!

Yeah, May through October was fun with the 99% humidity. All in all, Ohio is a good location if you want to live your life indoors.
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Old 12-25-2007, 12:52 AM   #15
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I use a "Go-Lite" made by a company called Apollo Health. It weighs less than a pound, and fits in a suitcase easily - about the size of a toiletry bag. I used it a lot when I was traveling extensively to cloudy, cold regions, and it seemed to help.
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Old 12-30-2007, 10:28 PM   #16
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Geez, man. Move to Calgary or eastern Washington. Or take a winter holiday in Mazatlan. Lots of daylight. There have GOT to be better things to do than sitting in Dayton in the winter.
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Old 01-03-2008, 11:45 PM   #17
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How strange, I was researching SAD earlier today. Synchronicity!

I also have the Apollo GoLite. I got it at Costco for like $150 a year or two back. It uses bright blue LEDs.

It is quite small and light-weight and bright. After purchasing the unit, I realized there was an upgraded model for a few bucks more that has an alarm setting that makes it turn on at a certain time. This is a feature you will definitely want.

I need this because my circadian rhythm is messed up, and I am a natural night owl. So, they recommended I use it an hour before I need to wake up each day, and stare at it for 30 minutes.

After trying it for a few days, I came to the conclusion that if I am already up an hour before to use it, I can just drag my ass to work! What is the point! I also read that blue light can be dangerous to the eye, even though the GoLite says it is safer than normal light boxes.

Even if you decide against the GoLite, take the test here, to see what schedule you should use a light for SAD:

Circadian Rhythm Assessment : Apollo Health

It is free, and will tell you when to use your light to adjust your moods and for what length of time. I assume it will be similar no matter what light box you use.


Anyway, I have now decided that I want to have a dawn simulator to wake up to and see how that works out. There are lots of cheesy and expensive models, most over $100. I found a cheap solution just today that I am going to try:

Sunrise simulator (dawn simulator) supplements your alarm clock. An inexpensive (cheap) treatment for SAD, shift work, winter blues, jet lag, or morning lethargy. An alternative to light boxes for under $25.

Basically, you plug a bedside lamp into it and plug it in 8 hours before you want it to start getting light, and it ramps up the brightness. I will pair it with a cheapy $5 timer from Home Depot to turn it on at the right time 8 hours in advance, problem solved for $35.

One last thing that I just read, that might defray the costs:

About 70% of insurance companies will cover the light. You may want to contact them before your purchase to see if they will cover it. You will also want to get a prescription from your doctor. Insurance info:
Insurance Reimbursement : Apollo Health


Good luck on whatever you decide!
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Old 01-04-2008, 08:47 PM   #18
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The weather in Ohio is very predictable...six months of too hot followed by six months of too cold.
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