Where to buy: Amazon
Rating: 8.8 out of 10
When I was in high school, there were some days that I never saw sunlight. School started at 7 in the morning and some days I had after school activities until 5 in the afternoon.
I always had trouble with sleep and under these conditions my problems were much more severe. With expectations from work and school, it is entirely possible to spend a day without seeing any sunlight.
Many jobs take place inside and we tend to go straight from work to home. This can affect our energy levels and even our happiness. Thankfully, for modern problems, there are modern solutions.
The Verilux HappyLight mimics the light of the sun, promising to regulate the circadian rhythm and even reducing the winter blues.
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How the HappyLight works
There are certain changes that take place in the body when we fall asleep. The brain releases melatonin causing us to become drowsy and the core body temperature drops.
These changes occur from day to day in a cycle called the circadian rhythm. However, the brain needs external signals to keep the circadian rhythm consistent. The change in light throughout the day is one of the biggest signals that keeps the circadian rhythm consistent.
The rise of the sun in the morning lets the brain know that it is time to wake up and be active and the darkness at night lets the brain know that it is time to sleep.
The HappyLight takes advantage of this fact and simulates natural sunlight so that the brain can operate on a normal circadian rhythm. According to the National Institute for Health, a minimum of 2,500 and maximum of 10,000 lux of light can reset the circadian rhythm. The Verilux Happylight falls within this range, producing 5,000 lux of light.
This light promises to help with a variety of sleep problems in a very simple and natural way. By sitting in front of a light, you could combat jet lag, shift work issues, delayed sleep phase syndrome, and even the winter blues. But is the light actually effective? I bought the HappyLight about a year ago to see if it would help me with my own sleep issues.
My Experience with the Happy Light
I have suffered from sleep issues for as long as I can remember. The issues that I have boil down to the fact that I am a very, very stubborn night owl. It is very difficult for me to go to sleep at night at a reasonable hour, and I always want to sleep in.
A few years ago, I realized that willpower alone would not be enough to cure me of my problems, so I decided to look at products that might cure me of my issues (after getting checked out by a doctor).
With my issues, I strongly suspected that I might have a circadian rhythm problem, so the idea that a light might actually be able to “normalize” the circadian rhythm was intriguing to me.
I had my doubts, though. I honestly didn’t feel completely comfortable with a product that I used in the morning, since it was so difficult for me to wake up in the morning. I thought that it would be easier to use products that would help me fall asleep at night.
One of my first impressions of the HappyLight was that it was quite small, which is great since that means that it is more portable. If you look through the catalog of sunlight simulation lights at amazon, you will notice that there is a wide range of sizes.
Some of them are small and portable and some of them are huge and arch over your head. The lights that arch above the head actually have an advantage because the light comes at an angle that is similar to sunlight. They tend to be much more expensive, though. Since the HappyLight is so portable, I can easily prop it up on my dresser so that the light comes from above.
Another thing that made an impression on me was the intensity of the light. It is very, very bright and when you first get this you have to be prepared to adjust to it. By this, I mean that you should not sit in front of it for an hour the first time that you use it.
You should only sit in front of it for about 10 or 15 minutes and even then it can be uncomfortable. According to the NIH, the light can lead to some eye discomfort such as eyestrain, blurred vision, seeing spots, glare, and irritation, but these issues tend to go away on their own.
There are not many reports of serious issues, but it should still be avoided in people with retinol damage and people who have no lens in one or both eyes.
I personally tend to experience some discomfort when using this. My eyes get tired more easily and I see spots during the day. It is very annoying, but after a couple of weeks these issues went away. Sometimes during the weekend, I sit in front of the lamp for much longer than usual (about an hour) and this has triggered a migraine for me.
The light actually fell into my morning routine pretty easily. I sit in front of it while I drink my morning coffee and eat my breakfast.
Most days, I sit in front of it for about 20 minutes, though if I have the time, I will sit in front of it for longer (up to 40 minutes is wise for me). The website recommends sitting in front of it for 30 to 60 minutes. It seems to take some trial and error to figure the timing out.
This light was extremely effective for helping me to wake up earlier.
This light was extremely effective for helping me to wake up earlier.
I noticed a difference after a couple of days of using this, and by the end to the 2nd week it had changed my life. With this light, I don’t just wake up earlier, I am also more alert and more focused in the morning. An advantage that I gained with this light was that I still had my night owl energy in the afternoon. I was also able to sleep better at night. It actually surprised me that I was able to fall asleep so consistently and deeply with this light.
Overall, this has been one of the best products for my sleep issues. It is highly effective for helping me to wake up early and has the added bonus of increasing my energy levels and alertness during the day while helping me to fall asleep quickly at night.
- Increased my energy levels and focus during the day
- Easy to incorporate into morning routine
- Portable and easy to take to work or on a trip
- Fairly inexpensive and lasts a long time
- May have some side effects such as making eyes tired or giving a headache
- Has a small adjustment period
The Verilux HappyLight ensures that you will get some exposure to sunlight everyday, which is very important for regulating the sleep cycle and mood. This light is a natural way to solve sleep issues with very few side effects and has been one of the best solutions for me personally to get on a regular sleep schedule.
Increase your energy and focus during the day while getting your best sleep ever. Click below to get the VeriLux HappyLight which produces 5,000 lux of light, mimicking the sun and helping to regulate your sleep.
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