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Light therapy and the management of winter depression

  • John M. Eagles

Abstract

Much the most common type of seasonal affective disorder at temperate latitudes is recurrent winter depression, which probably affects around 3% of adults in the UK to a clinically significant degree. In this article, diagnosis and presentation are discussed and symptoms are contrasted with those of non-seasonal depression. Aetiology and epidemiology, with regard to age, gender and latitude of residence, are described. Sufferers are often treated with light therapy, and this is described in some detail, with mention of effectiveness, prediction of outcome, timescales of response, side-effects, use of lightboxes and alternatives to lightboxes. Other general aspects of the management of seasonal affective disorder, including the use of antidepressant medication, are also outlined.

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References

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BJPsych Advances
  • ISSN: 1355-5146
  • EISSN: 1472-1481
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Light therapy and the management of winter depression

  • John M. Eagles
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