Make Your Home a Happier Place
Everyone wants their home to be the happiest place it can be. That means it should be comfortable, nice looking, secure, safe and where the residents truly feel “at home.” What many homeowners do not realize is the way lighting affects the mood and ambience of a home. Lighting is considered to be one of the most important factors in home design and décor. However, this is often overlooked when planning the interiors.
Appearances Are Deceptive
A home may appear to be well lit and cheerful, but there is often a large gap between appearance and the reality of proper lighting
. An example of this is a room that appears to be bright. However, when people need to read or concentrate on a specific task, they have to move lamps around to get the kind of illumination they want. A room like this cannot be called a well-lit one. The problem is that different activities require different types of lighting. If the light is too dim, eye strain and headaches arise. Drowsiness and fatigue are also at much higher levels in dimly lit rooms. However, overly bright or harsh lighting can be just as bad. Eyestrain, migraines, and irritability are more common in overly illuminated rooms.
The problem is that most rooms in the home are multi-functional. For example, a sitting room can be used for entertaining guests, watching TV, doing homework and so on. Each activity requires a different type and level of light. Installing a huge number of light fixtures to cater to the various needs is not just impractical; it will also ruin the appearance of the room.
The solution to this lighting problem is a simple one – use the maximum natural light. Daylight is good for us – from the vitamin D it contains to its disinfectant properties and more. Research has established that our cortisol levels drop when we are exposed to artificial and/or poor-quality light. This leads to increased stress and unstable energy levels. Of course, sunlight is available only during the day –there is no technology to store pure sunlight for use at night. However, maximizing the use of and exposure to sunlight during the day can go a long way towards compensating for the negative effects of prolonged exposure to artificial light at night.
Ensuring windows are clean and keeping drapes open will allow sunlight to enter a home. Unfortunately, that is often not enough to compensate for architectural issues, natural obstructions or weather factors that may result in an inadequate amount of sunlight being able to enter. The way around this problem is to install daylighting systems
. These capture the maximum amount of sunlight from the exterior of a home and carry that light through walls and ceiling to even the most interior parts of a house, including places like closets where no natural light is available. The best systems come with dimmers to control the amount of daylight in a room, light add-on kits so the same fixture can be used at night and ventilation kits to control humidity. Installation is quick and requires no structural modifications. The wide range of elegant fixtures means that finding the right ones to match a home’s décor is not an issue. And of course, daylight is free, so a daylighting system has no operating cost.
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