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New Light Box Therapy Available In IM Wellness Suite

As a part of the “Winter Blues” campaign, light therapy boxes are now available in the Relaxation Room at the Wellness Suite in the IM Building.  Health Promotion and Wellness has partnered with CAPS and UPUA to bring three mood-enhancing light boxes to Penn State students.

Penn State is known to have more cold and dreary days than not, which can lead to seasonal affective disorder (SAD) in some people.

“The winter months from November through March are times when students are most affected by SAD,” said Erin Raupers, the assistant director of Health Promotion and Wellness.

Whether they’ve been officially diagnosed or not, Raupers said anyone feeling a little down or needing some extra natural light can benefit from light therapy.

With 10,000 LUX, these boxes work by giving off a strong and bright natural light near an individual for intervals of 10-20 minutes. The bright light is designed to cue the body’s natural energy enhancers, and is safe and different from lights found in places like tanning beds. Manufacturers have worked to design a light that can “lift spirits, sharpen concentration, and improve energy levels.”

According to Raupers, the best way to achieve mood boosting results is to use light therapy in the morning at a consistent time for up to 20 minutes with the light box just more than a foot away from an individual’s face. All approximately 2o students that have tried them so far have had positive reviews and some felt like the light might help them focus a little better. As the light boxes increase in popularity, the wellness suite hopes buy more and one day be able to rent them out to students as well.

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About the Author

Sarah D'Souza

Sarah is a senior biobehavioral health major and a staff writer for Onward State. Like basically half of Penn State, she is from "right outside Philadelphia," and is the first Nittany Lion in her family. She is an avid lover of cheese, sushi, and carbs of all sorts. Unlike most people, she loves grammar and, like most people, enjoys long walks to wherever the puppies are. Hit her up at [email protected].

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