Light deprivation contributes to the Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Light deprivation may occur in other situations, and the link between this deprivation and psychological symptoms may be overlooked.


Situations where nonseasonal light deprivation may occur:

(1) working indoors during the day with low level lighting

(2) night shift work with low level lighting

(3) extended periods of cloudy or rainy weather

(4) ophthalmic disease with poor retinal light exposure

(5) mining or working underground

(6) submariners

(7) a person with photophobia who may be avoiding all light


People who may have light deprivation:

(1) person working in a photographic darkroom (or a diligent electron microscopist)

(2) librarian

(3) person with oculocutaneous albinism

(4) sewer or subway worker


The presence of SAD-like symptoms in a person with nonseasonal light deprivation should prompt a trial of light therapy.


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