The Yoga MD


Seasonal Affective Disorder | SAD Lamps

Using your SAD lamp first thing in the morning is best. front of your eyes. Instead, position it about 45 degrees to the right or left from your midline or eyes.

Welcome to November! In the Northern hemisphere, we are now entering some of the shortest days of the year. Many people experience Seasonal Affective disorder, which can leave you feeling depressed.

If you haven’t already, it is time to get out those SAD lamps. My favourite SAD lamp is my sunrise “alarm” clock that wakes me up with the morning light, not an alarm. However, a sunrise alarm clock might not work if you and your partner get up at different times. In that case, a simple SAD lamp may work best for you.

There are many options on the market varying in price from $50 -$200. I have even seen them on sale at Costco at this time of year. If that is out of your price range, a simple Daylight Spectrum bulb or even a light bulb that supplies 5000 to 10000 LUX may be helpful.

Using your SAD lamp first thing in the morning is best. Those who have suffered a concussion may benefit from increased exposure, 45 minutes to an hour if you can tolerate the brightness of the light. Simply place the lamp at eye level a few feet away from you, do not look directly at the light. Then, you can use it when you first wake up or make it a part of your morning routine. 

I use mine during my morning workout. 

Remember to take your vitamin D in the morning as well! The daily recommended dose is 1000 IU. However, individuals with darker skin tones may need to increase the amount from 2000 – 5000 IU, primarily if they are vitamin D deficient. Vitamin D acts like a hormone in our body, so remember that not everyone needs a higher dose, so more is not necessarily better.