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Library offers light therapy lamp

Chinook Arch Regional Library System has provided light therapy lamps through 26 member libraries, including Fort Macleod Library.

Light therapy is an effective treatment for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and other conditions.

It is exposure to light that is brighter than indoor light but not as bright as direct sunlight and is usually prescribed for about 30 minutes a day.

You simply place the lamp a certain distance from you and then sit in front of it as you read, eat or work at a computer.

Therapy is usually started in the fall and continued through spring.

Many people feel better within days of using the light every morning.

“Libraries offer value beyond words,” Chinook Arch CEO Robin Hepher said. “Today’s public library offers all kinds of tools to help people lead a better life, and this collection of SAD lamps is just one way we’re working with local public libraries to make unique resources available in communities across southwestern Alberta.”

Beyond providing unique items for library users to borrow, Chinook Arch also looks to form partnerships with community organizations that share common goals.

In this case, Alberta Health Services (AHS) was a perfect fit.

As a trusted resource for health information and supports, AHS provided information on the value that the light therapy lamps could provide to people across the region.

“As a community, all of us have the power to help one another and support the mental health of those around us,” said Thomas Mountain, senior operating officer of Addiction and Mental Health for AHS south zone.

“Initiatives like the one launched by Chinook Arch are an impressive display of how an organization can play a part in supporting community members across the region.”

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