Daylight is Essential to Your Mental Health
All research on the topic confirms the same undeniable truth – harnessing daylight as a source of interior lighting makes us all healthier, happier, and more productive.
Studies have found that the more daylight people are exposed to, the safer, happier, and less anxious they feel. This is because increased exposure to daylight helps to increase levels of serotonin – otherwise known as the ‘happy hormone’ – which helps reduce stress, anxiety, and depression.
Research also shows a steady supply of daylight throughout the day helps to regulate your body’s natural clock. Put simply, daylight tells your body to wake up, and darkness tells it to go to sleep. The more daylight you are exposed to during the day, the more it reinforces your natural sleep-wake cycle. As well as stopping you from falling asleep at your desk, this exposure regulates eating habits and digestion, body temperature, and hormone release.
Daylight Specialists Brings Daylight to the Indian Health Board Counseling Center
Solatube products installed by Daylight Specialists have dramatically changed the day-to-day experiences of those working and being treated inside the Indian Health Board Counseling Center— a small single floor building in a dense urban area of Minneapolis, MN. The center consists of a front waiting area, conference rooms, and interior and exterior clinical therapy rooms, many of which are windowless with no access to natural light.
Solatube’s daylighting systems and daylight dimmer were used to bring natural daylight deep into the interior therapy rooms – transforming the experience both for patients and for therapists, who spend 8-10 hours a day in the space.
“I believe my body senses the different light and it improves my overall energy level throughout the day,” says Autumn Bussuvanno, a therapist at the Center.
Despite working a windowless office, since Solatubes were introduced, Autumn says she has the lights turned off about 90% of the time. “Even though my electric lights are fully dimmable, I prefer the quality of natural daylight and silence of no electric lights,” she explains.
It may seem incredible that someone working in a windowless office would choose to switch their lights out – and such is the sheer power of Solatube technology.
“I often felt lethargic during the day in my windowless office,” another therapist says. “Now with the Solatube units, I feel so much better, and my attention span has even improved.”
Another therapist, Adriana Youssef, says she is now able to grow plants in the office because of Solatube. “It positively impacts my daily experience at work and keeps the room alive” she says.
Having a more natural office environment filled with daylight helps to reduce stress, improve morale, and increase productivity. As well as lowering counsellors’ stress levels, this also helps create an optimal environment for these individuals themselves to go through their therapeutic journey.
Daylight in a healthcare setting can make a huge impact and go way beyond simple energy efficiency. With quality daylight illumination influencing virtually every aspect of a health care facility, the effective use of daylight will result in a health care facility that maximizes patient and staff health and wellbeing.