To counter Vitamin D deficiency, some make use of vitamin d lamps. These are special lamps that trigger the skin to produce Vitamin D. Read on for more information about Vitamin D lamps, its proper use, and its risks.
What Vitamin D Lamps are
Vitamin D Lamps made by Sperti are your best bet if you want to give this technology a try. This is because Sperti lamps are the only FDA-approved Vitamin D lamps available in the market today making them a relatively safe choice as compared to other brands. So what do these lamps do? They are made to specifically emit ultraviolet-B (UVB) rays. These rays, much like what the sun does, pack enough intensity to stimulate the skin to produce Vitamin D. These lamps are specially formulated to produce this type of rays. Other lights such as your usual fluorescent lamps do not produce rays of the same intensity as UVB rays.
UVA and UVB Difference
As you try and understand the technology behind Vitamin D lamps, you might come across two types of rays: Ultraviolet A (UVA) and Ultraviolet B (UVB). UVA is more intense than the regular indoor lamps but is less intense compared to UVB. It measures around 320-340 nanometers. This type of rays tans the skin that is why tanning machines use UVA rays. UVB is far more intense. It extends to 290-320 nanometers and penetrates through the superficial epidermal layers and spurs Vitamin D production by the skin. Since overexposure to these rays can be potentially harmful to the skin, sessions with Vitamin D Lamps do not go beyond five minutes. Exposure is not on a permanent area either. One has to rotate the parts of the body being exposed to the lamp throughout the session to prevent any adverse reaction such as burning.
Vitamin D Uses and Deficiency
Before moving along with the discussion about Vitamin D Lamps, it is essential to understand the importance of Vitamin D and what could happen to the body if there is a Vitamin D deficiency. Here are some of the benefits of Vitamin D:
- Better absorption of calcium: Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium so it has a hand in keeping teeth and bones healthy and strong.
- Boosts immune system: Another benefit of Vitamin D is that it boosts the immune system. It helps keep diseases and infections at bay.
- May prevent certain types of cancer: Recent studies show that there is a positive correlation between Vitamin D intake and prevention of some types of cancer. These include breast, colon, and prostate cancers.
- May prevent certain types of diseases: There are also studies that suggest that Vitamin D helps the body counter symptoms of diabetes and multiple sclerosis; regulate blood pressure; and even reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Vitamin D deficiency can potentially cause the following conditions:
- Kidney concerns.
- Liver diseases.
- Crohn’s disease
- Celiac disease
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Brittle bones
- Pain and weakness of muscles and bones
- Reduced bone density
- Stomach and Intestinal Problems
- Fatigue or Lethargy
- Seasonal Affective Disorder
If you fall under any of these conditions, there might be a higher risk of having Vitamin D deficiency.
- Skin color: Those with darker skin produce significantly less Vitamin D than those with fair skin.
- Mobility problems: Those who do not have enough access to sunlight can also lead to a deficiency in Vitamin D.
- Age: As a person advances in age, the skin produces less and less Vitamin D.
If any of these conditions apply to you, you might want to consider using Vitamin D lamps. This way, you know you are getting enough Vitamin D and be able to enjoy its benefits. To really find out if you lack Vitamin D or not, you can ask your doctor to prescribe blood work for you. Only such test can definitively say whether you have such deficiency or not.
How to use Vitamin D lamps
While it is advisable that you should use an FDA-approved Vitamin D lamp, whichever brand you use will have a similar way of operating. Here is a step-by-step how-to for your guidance:
- Place the lamp on a flat surface approximately 18 inches away from you.
- Set timer to five minutes. If you are a beginner, you might want to start with 1 minute first and gradually work your way to five. Do not exceed five minutes.
- Wear protective gear especially for your eyes. Consult your doctor whether you have to remove your shirt or not.
- Switch on the device.
- Rotate your body parts to prevent tanning, burning, or overexposure.
- Do this two to three times a week. However, nothing beats natural sunlight. In fact, you can do early morning jogging every day and just have one session of a minute or two per week.
Before you do commit to use Vitamin D lamps, make sure you have gained clearance from your doctor. This way you know such technology fits your health considerations.
Safety and Risks
Since you are handling high-intensity rays, there is a risk of burning, discoloration, and overexposure. To prevent this from happening, make sure you do the following:
- Limit use to three times in a week.
- Do not exceed five minutes in one session.
- Rotate your body parts for even exposure.
There is no danger of Vitamin D overdose if it is through the skin. However, it is a different story altogether if taken orally. Again, consult your doctor for ideal dosage if you will take Vitamin D supplements orally.
Vitamin D does a lot of good for the body. Sometimes, however, there are people who suffer due to the deficiency of the said vitamin. With Vitamin D lamps, you can address this problem. However, proper consultation and tests are needed to assure your safety as you expose your skin to UVB rays.