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Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that manifests as feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and loss of interest in activities, often occurring during the fall and winter months when there is a lack of natural sunlight. Infrared therapy is a highly effective treatment that uses infrared light wavelengths to imitate the positive effects of natural sunlight on the body.

Research indicates that exposing the body to infrared wavelengths can regulate the circadian rhythm, which controls the sleep-wake cycle. Disruptions in the circadian rhythm are a major contributor to SAD. Elevated cortisol levels, a stress hormone, can result from disrupted circadian rhythm and lead to negative health effects such as depression, anxiety, stress, weight gain, sleep issues, and more.

Infrared therapy not only regulates the circadian rhythm, thereby reducing cortisol levels, but it also causes the blood vessels to dilate and increases blood flow and oxygen to the muscles, leading to a relaxing effect throughout the body. Additionally, the therapy promotes the release of endorphins, natural painkillers, and stimulates the production of serotonin and melatonin, chemicals that regulate mood, sleep, and appetite. Elevated levels of serotonin can enhance mood, while increased melatonin can promote relaxation and restful sleep.

Clinical trials have demonstrated that infrared therapy provides a natural and effective solution for those struggling with SAD, as well as with anxiety, stress, and major depression. A study conducted by the University of Wisconsin Madison showed that elevating the body temperature of participants with depression to the equivalent of a mild fever significantly improved their symptoms of major depression for up to 6 weeks, with just one session.

The study found that heating the skin activates the production of serotonin in the mid-brain, leading to changes in brain function. Infrared technology of Sunlighten saunas has been clinically proven to raise the core temperature by three degrees, positively impacting mental health.

Experience the positive impact on mental health with a Sunlighten infrared session at Bodyworks and Laser Clinic. Please see the ad on page 4 for a special offer during the month of March.

For a virtual tour of one of the infrared therapy suites at BodyWorks & Laser Clinic, follow this link or visit for more information. BodyWorks & Laser Clinic is located at 721 Cardinal Lane in the Village of Howard.

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