Who hasn’t felt like staying in bed and hibernating in the depths of winter? If it’s an occasional feeling, no problem, but if it’s chronic, you could have seasonal deficit disorder (SAD).
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Female Speaker: Looking forward to a long, cold, dark winter? Likely not and especially not if the reduced hours of daylight really get you down, to shed some light on the topic of seasonal affective disorder or SAD, it's Iris of Dell Pharmacy. This is Dailyweb TV. Tracy Bezeau: Today we're at Dell Pharmacy and we're talking light therapy. Iris, explain to me what light therapy is? Iris Krawchenko: Light therapy is used to treat something called seasonal affective disorder otherwise known as SAD. And SAD is characterized as a seasonal depression where it starts in the fall and then it lives in the spring time. Tracy Bezeau: What are some of the symptoms that people should be looking for? Iris Krawchenko: Typically side affects women more than man, it's almost to 2:1 ratio and it begins in your mid-20s and then it becomes more and more intense annually. And in order to have a true diagnosis of seasonal affective disorder it has to happen two consecutive years in a row and so typically we can characterize the symptoms into two branches, one is physical and one is emotional. So from a physical perspective, people just feel a lack of energy, they have decreased activity and another marker is just difficulty getting up in the mornings. From an emotional perspective they just have social withdraw, you don't feel going anywhere you just want to stay home, it's almost like a form of hibernation or cocooning and irritability and almost -- some times you get such a feeling of anxiety that you can have heart palpitation as well. Tracy Bezeau: What are my options now that, you know, I have SAD what now? Iris Krawchenko: I think first and foremost is important to get a diagnosis from your physician or healthcare provider and then you have two options. Tracy Bezeau: Okay. Iris Krawchenko: And both have been validated scientifically. Currently light therapy is the primary treatment for seasonal affective disorder but an alternative is using an antidepressant as well. Tracy Bezeau: Okay. Iris Krawchenko: By using an antidepressant you have use that year around, you can't just sort of start in the fall and stop in the spring, it would be sort of a life time commitment to treatment. Tracy Bezeau: Explain some of your models that we have sitting with us right now? Iris Krawchenko: Again we've been involved with light therapy for over 20 years, so we do our research annually to see what is the current, what has been studied, what's been validated and what's safe. So this is our fleet of models that we are carrying this year. This is a portable light therapy model and you can see it's quite bright and the reason for that is, it is simulating natural sunshine. When you go to look for a light therapy box you have to see that it is 10,000 LUX box, and LUX is a metric measurement of the intensity of light. This light box and the one that's standing beside you that's called the flamingo because of the one arm there. They are 10000 LUX boxes and you achieve a dose by sitting in front of it at a specific distance for a specific period of time. Typically, we say 30 minutes first thing in the morning before 8 o'clock. Tracy Bezeau: Well I'm starting to feel more energy now. I'm starting to feel more awake than I did when I came in here. Iris Krawchenko: Yeah. Tracy Bezeau: Can I now just go any random store, pick a box above the counter and go home, plug it and sit in front it. Iris Krawchenko: Yeah, that's a great question. Light therapy boxes have to be designated to be true light therapy boxes and again you have to look for specific information that you are getting a dose of 10000 LUX, so look for that. And we also would encourage you to look for ones that do not peak in the blue wavelength. And what I mean by that is, all light therapy boxes look white, you can see it is bright white light therapy, these are fluorescent bulbs. Some of them do peak in the blue wavelength and that peak in the blue wavelength has been linked to macular degeneration of t
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