Late winter sometimes seems like it’s going to drag on FOREVER! February and March can leave me wondering if the sun is ever coming back, and that’s why I’m loving an easy and cheap way to fake it till Spring! The Alzo Joyous Light can deliver light therapy — and make you feel a whole lot better — for less than $5.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (aka S.A.D.) is the clinical name for what we might call the “wintertime blues.” Some people get truly depressed, while others just feel sort of down. Light therapy is generally prescribed for people at every end of the range, but lights and lamps specially designed and marketed for winter light therapy can be very expensive.
If you suspect you have the wintertime blue, try this inexpensive CFL. called the Alzo Joyous Light. It’s a bright white lightbulb equivalent to a 60 Watt incandescent that’s designed to provide the full spectrum of light we usually get from the sun. Using it is easy: put it in a lamp without a shade, and then hook your lamp up to a timer so that you wake up in the morning just after the light comes on. But don’t get out of bed! Instead spend ten or fifteen minutes in bed reading or relaxing while the Alzo is in your peripheral vision. Believe it or not, that’s actually enough light to make a big difference. And don’t look directly at it – you wouldn’t look at the sun, right? It’s enough just to keep the light near you (but not too close).
The Alzo Joyous Light is available on Amazon in a pack of 4 for $18.23 with free shipping for Prime members – that brings the cost of your light therapy to $4.56, assuming you have a timer and a lamp around you can use. Even if you need to grab a timer, that should only set you back another $10-$20. That’s a pretty good deal for light therapy.
If you want something brighter and are willing to pay a little more, check out the Lightphoria 10,000LUX Energy Light Lamp. It’s $70 from Amazon, but it’s portable light therapy with a built-in timer that plugs right into the wall, no additional lamp necessary. Since it costs a little more, I recommend trying the $5 solution and see if you think it’s helping: if you can feel a difference, then consider upgrading.
Now of course if you or someone you love is really suffering from depression, it may be time to talk to a doctor: don’t expect the Alzo Joyous Light to fix everything! But if you’re feeling sun-deprived and BLAH as winter just won’t end, try this and see how you feel.