Sleep disorders and disruptive behaviour during the night are commonly associated with dementia. Bright lights have been found to be beneficial as a treatment for these sleep disturbances. In bright light therapy, a person sits in front of a light box that provides about 30 times more light than the average office light, for a set amount of time each day.
One small but well-conducted study showed promising effects of bright light therapy on restlessness and disturbed sleep for people with dementia. A large and well-conducted research review found that bright light therapy can result in less daytime sleeping and increased night-time sleeping.
Current findings indicate that bright light therapy may benefit people with dementia, but further research is needed.
For a list of recommended light box suppliers, contact the Seasonal Affective Disorder Association
Seasonal Affective Disorder Association
PO Box 332
Wallingford OX10 1EP
Charity which provides a list of recommended manufacturers of light boxes that may also be used in dementia.