A small but promising study by the University of Arizona has found interesting possibilities for treating some common concussion symptoms. The researchers found that by treating patients with mild brain damage a certain dose of blue light each morning, they could help alleviate some typical side effects, such as depression and sleep problems.
There has been a great deal of scientific literature exploring the harmful effects of blue light emitted by modern devices, which is largely related to the destruction of our circadian rhythms. Instead, there are many techniques and research projects that hope to make good use of blue light, including addressing psoriasis, high blood pressure and killing bacteria that cause skin and soft tissue infections.
Similarly, researchers at the University of Arizona conducted an experiment to see how blue light can be beneficial to patients with concussions and other mild brain trauma. The preliminary study involved 35 subjects with an average age of 26, all of whom had suffered concussions in the past 18 months.
During the six-week experiment, everyone used desktop equipment for half an hour every morning. For 17 of the subjects, the bright light they were exposed to was blue, while the other 18 subjects received amber light as a placebo. All participants were tested to assess different symptoms of concussion, including depression, headache, fatigue, and sleep, memory and inattention.
The study showed that people who received blue light therapy experienced a “significant” decline, with the group known as baker’s depression scale on depression tests increasing by an average of 22 percent. These improved scores were associated with reducing other symptoms, including sleep disorders, fatigue, inattention, restlessness, and irritability. At the same time, the mood in the placebo group deteriorated by only 4 percent, the researchers said.
The scientists noted that a small sample size was a significant limitation of the study, and that not all subjects were diagnosed with clinical depression, which is more serious. However, they remain hopeful about these encouraging early results and hope the technology will lead to new treatment options for patients with mild brain trauma.
Study author William D. Killgore said: “These results reinforce the effects of blue light therapy may be an effective non-drug therapy for concussion, and improvements in depression may improve mental and physical concussion symptoms and thus improve quality of life.” Despite its limitations, the findings offer a promising treatment for people suffering from emotional disorders after concussions. “
The researchers released the study last week at the 72nd annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in Toronto, Canada.