From ancient times, people knew about the therapeutic benefit of life. Although, technology has developed very recently to enable everyone to receive the gift of light from their home’s comfort. Besides helping people with seasonal and non-seasonal depression, it has benefits in healing skin, building muscle, and restoring hormonal balance. However, as the saying goes, excess of everything is very bad can also be applied in the case of light therapy. In the following article, we are going to briefly discuss the common side effects that can be caused if you are having too much light therapy and what to do in such cases.
Probability of Side Effects
Light is a very natural element. People have been basking in the sun from the dawn of civilization. At first light therapy was developed by NASA to promote rapid healing for astronauts. However, with time, many skincare, muscle building, and medical equipment have adopted this technology. Now, the most harmful portion of light therapy is the UV-ray. A small amount of UV-ray can be beneficial for health; however, it can also cause serious damage to the body too.
The sun emits three kinds of UV-ray. UV-A, UV-B, &UV-C. Here the UV-A consists of the largest wavelength, and UV-C consists of the shortest. UV-A is the prominent wavelength that is often used in therapy. While the other two only come a small portion into the earth by omitting the ozone barrier. UV-B can simulate vitamin-D production in a person’s body, while the use of UV-C is highly restricted to disinfect inorganic objects. Excessive exposure to any of those UV-ray can initiate cancer.
However, the side effects are not limited to UV-ray poisoning. Some additional conditions can be:
Photophobia is a condition that makes one irritable when exposed to light. When a person is exposed to too much light, photophobia can develop, and that can hamper the ultimate goal of bright light therapy.
Headache & Migraine
Lightboxes can induce chronic headaches. The discomfort can be intensified when a person has a headache beforehand. The person diagnosed with migraine can be unbearable in some cases. Some people expressed that they had a shorter period of headache, while others complained to have larger exposure to chronic headaches.
Fatigue & Insomnia
Lightboxes possess the ability to reset your biological clock. When the reset is done inappropriately, your body may adapt to feel sleepy during the day and keep you wide awake at night. Thus your body may experience fatigue during daytime and develop insomnia.
Some people have complained that the lightbox has induced irritability in them. They have less patience and easily snap in some cases. That affected their professional and social life pretty negatively.
Reducing the Side Effects
Side effects of bright light therapy are pretty rare, although they can occur at any moment. So be prepared for such time is important. Also, some very simple steps can help a person to avoid such side effects.
- Increase the distance between you and the lightbox.
- Take breaks during the therapy session if you feel irritated.
- If longer therapy seems inconvenient, consider having shorter therapy sessions.
- Some lightboxes are armed with the function of reducing intensity. If the default setting is too much for you, consider reducing the intensity of light.
- Patients with bipolar disorder can develop a maniac period when introduced to light. So if you have conditions like light-sensitive skin, migraine; avoid light therapy or consult with a doctor beforehand.
Healing Power of Light
With the right dosage and procedure, light can be a healer for you. The progress of technology has made lightboxes a household name for therapeutic use. A lot of researches had been done on light therapy, and more are being conducted. It is a painless and natural procedure that has various dimensions in healing and repairing one’s body and bodily functions.
However, more researches are needed to determine the precise dosage and limiting the possible side effects. People have been benefitted largely from light therapy in reducing cancerous cells, tissue regeneration, inflammation reduction, and wound healing. Researchers are working day and night in perfecting this technology. One can certainly hope to see a wide range of light therapy usage in various sectors in the future.
The usage of light therapy has always been a controversial subject. Many have exploited this technology that certainly has raised a lot of questions. But, its effectiveness is also very evident nowadays. So, it can be safely said that with the careful use of light therapy, our body and mind can be benefitted largely.