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Light therapy

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Martial, Mar 6, 2014.

  1. Martial

    Martial Senior Member

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    Ventura, CA
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  2. Allyson

    Allyson *****

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    Thnks, llght also helps me sleep Martial

    - a blue light in themorning switches off you melatonin so you get to sleep that night - often....


    cheers

    Ally
  3. GhostGum

    GhostGum Senior Member

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    I saw an interesting documentary about this last night, some scientists doing certain studies. One of the more interesting ones was where a neurologist set up these enclosed booths lit up by different colours and he had people try to guess when they had been in there for a minute, a sense of time experiment. As it turned out his original assumptions were backwards, in that he thought red would produce people guessing less time, due it causing a more fight or flight primal state, while people would over estimate being more relaxed in the violet booth. It turned out people over estimated in the red because it sharpened their awareness while over estimating in the violet being more relaxed.

    On the blue as Ally mentioned they used it where they set up a whole bar/night spot lit up in blue and found it kept people awake much longer, messing with their circadian rhythm and over sleeping. Not sure that was the definitive experiment to determine that but think they knew this already.

    Noticed for a while a therapist I go to see every few weeks always had a violet led light running and only just asked him today why and he said it is to help calm people, but also showed me it was a lamp he could change colours with a remote for different patients situations. Asked him whether the violet would help me sleep and was a resounding yes, was actually looking for a lamp on ebay today but could not find one, guess I need a blue now too for waking up :)

    As has been mentioned before on these forums before too sitting on your computer at night can be very problematic, there is some free colour reduction software about,

    http://justgetflux.com/

    Doubt colour therapy is going to cure anything serious but it clearly is a factor on our moods and sleep.
  4. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    I've been using light and darkness therapy for years, and it's made a massive difference to my sleep patterns. Darkness therapy is where you eliminate blue light exposure for a few hours before bed (orange tinted glasses, yellow light bulbs). I find that I rarely need the light box now I'm using darkness therapy. Before this, I had Non-24 Sleep-Wake Disorder.
  5. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    @Calathea I have a few questions for you/

    How many hours before bed do you eliminate blue light?
    What kind of yellow light bulbs do you use... just your everyday tinted ones?
    And... what about candle light... does that qualify as being not in the blue range?
  6. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    I set my alarm for 9.30pm for switching to the orange specs (fully blue-blocking - they're prescription, and about 50% saturation). The yellow bulbs have an opaque coating in a marigold yellow. You don't necessarily need both, I just like the bulbs. If you're not using tinted specs, get an orange filter for computers and such, e.g. from a lighting gel company. F.lux is not enough. I wrote a Wordpress website about it some years ago called In Search Of Mornings.
  7. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    I go to bed at 9:30, so how many hours prior do I need the orange specs?
    And don't they sell those orange glasses on Amazon? These are the ones I have used. Are they good enough. Prescription sounds very expensive... 31FC-p7fnHL.jpg


    As for the lightbulbs, which of these is marigold?
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_s...t bulb&sprefix=yellow lig,office-products,256
  8. perchance dreamer

    perchance dreamer Senior Member

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    I got my amber glasses from lowbluelights.com and have had them for years. Their prices for glasses average $70 to $80, expensive, but less so than prescription glasses, I'm sure.

    AZ does have better prices. I searched on "amber glasses to block blue light, " and there seem to be lots of satisfied customers.

    I also got amber light bulbs for my lamps at lowbluelights. I use them when I read late at night and also when I wake in the middle of the night.
    Dreambirdie likes this.
  9. Aileen

    Aileen Senior Member

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    Anyone know if there is a machine an individual could use at home that could be programmed or set somehow to a specific wavelength of light? It might be interesting to try out. Similar to using a Rife-type machine only this is light and Rife is sound waves.
  10. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    Try two or three hours before bed, see how that works for you. Remember not to let yourself be exposed to white light during that time, which in practice means that if you go to the loo in the middle of the night, either put on your orange specs or get used to being in the dark. I went for leaving the light off, you get used to it quite fast, and my hall is just dimly lit enough that I can see down it without upsetting my sleep.

    I got prescription glasses, after ascertaining that the method worked for me, because I found that trying to wear two pairs of glasses at once was deeply uncomfortable, and my eyesight is severe enough that I have to wear specs all the same.

    You really don't need to pay lowbluelights.com's prices for, well, anything. They're just the same bulbs and glasses that you can buy elsewhere, marked up a great deal. When I mentioned marigold yellow, it's because I've seen two shades of opaque yellow coatings on bulbs. One is a pale yellow, more of a lemon really, and that lets a bit of blue light through. The other one is a rich yellow that leans a bit towards orange. You can also use amber bulbs if you prefer. I have a couple of small frosted glass lamps which take pygmy (sign) bulbs, and the yellow in those is the lemon that doesn't work, so I use orange for those instead. One by my bed in my flat, one by the bed in my boyfriend's flat. In my flat, I also have a normal-sized bulb with the marigold yellow coating (sort of behind a glass lamp for various reasons) and a string of fairy lights with dark orange roses (made from rubber plant leaf skeletons) above that in the bookcase. Not essential, but pretty and atmospheric, and my boyfriend finds it relaxing as well. I don't have any orange lights in the living room, but I do have fairly low level lighting in the evening. You can get yellow or orange fluorescent bulbs as well, which I've not tried. Of the ones on the Amazon page, the Satco one looks like the colour I'm talking about, but most of the rest are probably fine as well. Just steer clear of anything transparent, which will include all reflector bulbs, and anything that looks any lighter than that really bright yellow you see the most. You can test a bulb by turning the other lights off and holding a CD or DVD up near the light. Turn it to and fro until you see light reflecting off it. If any of that light is blue or violet, then you've got blue light coming out of your bulb. If it's just, say, a small amount of green, I wouldn't worry.

    Those specs look fine. You want 100% blue light blocking. A bit of light creeps in around the edges, which is why it's a good idea to keep the background lighting reasonably low. As far as I recall, if you hunt for orange sunglasses on Amazon, you find loads, with lots of reviews from people using them for this purpose. Word must have got out somewhere. If you're in the UK, Optima Low Vision sell a good range of orange glasses.

    Here is the links page from my website, although I've not checked it in years so some links may be out of date.
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  11. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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  12. GhostGum

    GhostGum Senior Member

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  13. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    I've tried those multicolour bulbs and found them to be awful. The white isn't usable, and realistically you don't need all those colours anyway. It's not like the blue is strong enough for light therapy, and I think the oranges were an odd colour.
  14. GhostGum

    GhostGum Senior Member

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    Wouldn't the yellow be fine though? Since unlike a coated bulb it is just in the yellow spectrum. Just after a purple though to see if it actually does help me sleep, sometimes go to sleep with a light on, warm white bulb and need an alternative.

    How many lux minimum do you need for light therapy?
  15. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    Oh, the yellow would be OK, but it's likely to be weak, expensive, and possibly an unpleasant colour. So I didn't find that it was worth it.

    Lux for light therapy - depends on the source. They uses to say 10, 000 lux, but that doesn't apply with LED light boxes, which are more efficient (they're dead on the right wavelength, for starters). I found fluorescents gave me migraine. Some people say you can just put in full-spectrum bulbs, but clinically they're absolutely useless: not enough brightness, not enough focus on the right wavelength.
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