All Day Family Living – highlighting the importance of natural daylight in your home
The clocks go forward an hour at the end of March, signalling the start of spring and the arrival of more daylight. To mark this, we are promoting All Day Family Living, highlighting the importance of having as much natural light in your home as possible, so you and your loved ones can enjoy a happy and healthy environment.
The benefits of natural daylight, both physical and psychological, are obvious and have been linked to improvements in our wellbeing and mood. Who doesn’t feel happier when they throw open the curtains in the morning and see the sun shining? While dark, gloomy days almost certainly dampen your spirits.
Making sure your home enjoys the maximum amount of natural daylight is incredibly important to keeping your family healthy. In fact, we are 1.6 times more likely to report health problems when living in badly lit and damp homes.
Over history, we have been a race of sun worshippers – quite literally in ancient times – but as we now typically spend the vast majority of our time indoors, we need to look at ways to maximise the amount of natural daylight we can enjoy while in our homes.
But why is natural daylight so important when it comes to having a happy home environment? There are several reasons for this.
Your sleep-wake cycle is known as your circadian rhythm and acts as an internal 24-hour clock that runs in the background of your mind, cycling between you feeling sleepy and alert at regular intervals.
Artificial light disrupts your circadian rhythm, and this has been linked to a host of medical issues, including depression, obesity and cardiovascular disease. It also causes the suppression of melatonin and has been associated with sleep disorders, such as insomnia.
It has been proven that a lack of daylight can lead to us feeling low, depressed and anxious, affecting our mood and psychological health. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a significant example of how important daylight is to our mental wellbeing and how badly we can suffer without it.
Dragging ourselves out of bed and off to work in those dark, cold winter months isn’t nice for anybody. However, studies have found that by improving your access to natural light, levels of stress and agitation can be reduced.
The more natural light that your home benefits from, the less need you’ll have for artificial light, such as fluorescent bulbs.
Although they are generally recognised as being safe, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) can cause an elevated stress response in some people and if used as your main light source on a regular basis can increase the risk of eye strain and migraines.
Productivity is key for all of us. Whether we have to go to work or have busy lives at home looking after the house and children, most of us have hectic schedules and have to hit the ground running each morning as soon as the alarm goes off. A big benefit of natural light is that it actually makes us more productive.
With strong links between the benefits of exposure to natural light and overall productivity, natural light has been linked to efficiency, improved focus and less illness. Again, improved sleep quality is also a major factor in our productivity.
Natural light isn’t just beneficial for the physical and psychological wellbeing of you and your family, it’s also good for your home too and can help to prevent mould and mildew.
Mould thrives in dark and damp environments, so properties that are gloomy with poor access to natural daylight and ventilation are prone to be affected, leading to a range of potential health problems.
Ensuring that your home is exposed to lots of natural sunlight can help prevent mould spores taking hold.
Let there be light
There are several effective ways that you can light up your home with natural sunshine.
- On reflection – placing a few tactically positioned mirrors can reflect the sunlight from windows and cast more brightness around your home.
- Curtains for curtains – removing heavy curtains will allow more daylight into your home and allowing the sun to be your alarm will help with your circadian rhythm. Alternatively, you could opt for blinds and keep them raised throughout the day.
- Bright ideas – make the most of colours in your home to reflect the light. White is the most reflective option, but light-coloured pastels on walls work just as well. You can also lighten up dark floors with a bright coloured rug.
We supply and install a range of attractive PVCu windows in a variety of styles, including casement, tilt & turn, reversible and sash & case – all designed to provide you with clean sightlines and large glazing areas to invite the maximum amount of daylight inside – as well as allowing easy ventilation. And speaking of bringing lots of healthy fresh air in, if you are looking to open up your home to the outside then our widespan bi-fold doors or patio doors are the perfect choice, increasing the sunlight into your house whether open or closed.
Adding a conservatory or glazed extension to your home is the ultimate way to benefit from natural illumination. Available in a whole range of styles, colours and finishes, what better way to enjoy a sunny day than relaxing inside your conservatory and admiring the great outdoors from the comfort of your seat.
Come along and see the light
To see how our products can help let the light into your home and encourage All Day Family Living, visit one of our 3 showrooms – in Edinburgh, Dundee and Perth – and speak to a member of our friendly team or contact us for more information.