How Actually Lighting Affects Mood
The chances are high that you are reading this post while in an interior living space with lights on. Most human beings see modern living as spending many hours of the day in locked rooms using natural and artificial lighting to illuminate the living areas. Artificial light has played a significant role in humans’ lives, making life easier. However, it has challenges such as confusing human bodies, affecting how humans react to darkness during the night and sunlight during the day. Circadian cycle or rhythm is the human response to natural light. It illustrates the twenty-four hours biological pattern of almost all if not all living creatures.
The hypothalamus, which is linked to photoreceptors found everywhere, is the part of the brain where the natural clock is found. All the light absorbed during the day is synchronized with our internal clock with the help of the receptors. It is essential to fully understand the circadian cycle as it affects cell renewal, temperature control, digestion, wakefulness, mood, sleep, and other rhythms/patterns of the human body system. Research indicates that enough light improves energy levels and spirit, while inadequate light leads to depression, stress, and other deficiencies in the body. The type and amount of light significantly affect mood, appetite, concentration, and many other aspects of our day-to-day activities.
Research shows that it is pretty impossible to have a healthy circadian cycle if we spend the better part of our time in areas and rooms flooded with artificial lights. For most people, their last activity of the day right before sleeping or immediately waking up is staring at the blue screens from their phones and laptops. Architects can promote healthier living by designing healthy lighting systems that will enable a healthy circadian cycle. It is highly recommended to imitate natural daylight rhythms with artificial lightings. During the day, it is recommended to use stronger and brighter lights while it is recommended to use dimmer lights during the night. Interchanging the configurations will cause decreased energy levels during the day, change our sleeping patterns, and confuse our circadian cycles.
The human body is also primarily affected by the color temperature of light. Its unit symbol is Kelvin(K). High color temperature is an indication of bright and cool light. It is wise to note that cold and warm are not used to refer to the physical heat of the bulb but to the color or tone of the light. Warm light brings a sense of a relaxed and welcoming environment, while cool lights reflect a stimulating environment. People feel more focused, more alert, and have high productivity levels under cooler lights.