Research: Natural light in the workplace improves health - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Research: Natural light in the workplace improves health

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"We have very little absenteeism from sickness,” Lanpher said. "We have very little absenteeism from sickness,” Lanpher said.
CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

How do you feel after a day at the office? According to recent studies, that could depend on whether or not you have a window seat at your workplace. Experts say lots of daylight coming in your office positively impacts your mental health and overall well-being.

"We chose to design the office so that we have lots of light coming from the outside, whether we are in an individual office or the main area here,” Charlotte Lanpher said.

Lanpher is an insurance agent for State Farm. She moved her business into its current space on Mt. Auburn Road in Cape Girardeau about four and a half years ago.

"We have windows that go from one office to another,” Lanpher said.

She said when they made the move, lighting was a priority.

"There is a difference with natural lighting coming in our window morning and afternoon, it enhances all of the workloads,” Lanpher said.

According to recent research from "The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine" and Cornell University, people who work in offices with lots of natural light, when compared to those who work in dimly lit rooms, tend to exercise more, rest better, laugh more and are nicer to coworkers and customers. The research also shows they have lower blood pressure and increased alertness.

Lanpher said she witnesses those benefits first hand.

"We have very little absenteeism from sickness,” Lanpher said.

Interior designers say lighting plays a big role in the comfort and mood of a room.

"I guess the worst situation is when people don't have any windows in the room at all then they really do need to take a lunch break and leave,” Designer Julie Ann Connell said.

Connell works at Rust and Martin in Cape Girardeau. She said natural lighting is great, but keep in mind that you can get too much.

"It's a balance between it because if you don't have enough light, you eye strain and if you have too much, you still have eye strain but you can also have stress,” Connell said.

She said if you want to get more of a natural light look, whether or not you have windows, you can always ask an expert.

"Different lightings you put in can make the appearance of more like daylight. Incandescent [lights] are a little more like natural light,” Connell said.

Experts suggest if you work in an office with little or dim lighting, try to step away from you desk. Take a phone call or a lunch break outside to enjoy some of that sunshine throughout the day.

Copyright 2014 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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