Burnout and Light Treatment

Y. Meesters*, M. Waslander

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The core symptom of the burnout syndrome is emotional exhaustion, which leads to impaired functioning on the job. Studies of sufferers of seasonal affective disorders and of healthy people show that energy levels can be improved by exposing them to bright light. It is hypothesized that energy levels of patients with burnout complaints can similarly be improved by exposure to bright light. In a small study, the effects of light treatment in burnout sufferers were researched. A comparison was made between a treatment condition (n = 16) and a waiting list condition (n = 14). The effects were assessed by means of several self-rating instruments. Patients' energy levels were seen to improve significantly according to the scores on two out of three instruments. If light treatment is administered prior to any other treatment, it is postulated that the results of the second treatment will take effect more quickly. Conclusions can only be preliminary due to the small sample size, but they are encouraging nevertheless. Replication in a study with a larger sample size is desirable. Copyright (C) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)13-20
    Number of pages8
    JournalStress and Health
    Volume26
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Feb-2010

    Keywords

    • burnout
    • emotional exhaustion
    • light treatment
    • SEASONAL AFFECTIVE-DISORDER
    • RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIAL
    • SICKNESS ABSENCE
    • THERAPY
    • EXPOSURE
    • WORK
    • PREDICTORS
    • COMPLAINTS
    • FATIGUE
    • MOOD

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