ERIC Number: ED336677
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-May-7
Reference Count: N/A
Comparing a Cognitive Model and Phototherapy in the Treatment of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is characterized by recurrent major depression or bipolar disorder that occurs annually, usually later in fall as the daylight hours decrease, and that alternates with euthymic or hypomanic moods in the spring and summer. Pioneering research by Dr. Norman Rosenthal and associates has found phototherapy to be effective in ameliorating the depressive symptoms of this disorder. No research to date has studied the effects of using a cognitive approach to alleviate the symptoms of SAD. This study compared the efficacy of phototherapy and cognitive therapies (cognitive restructuring, reframing, and problem solving) in the treatment of the disorder. Subjects (N=4) were recruited from advertisements in university newspapers and from referrals from university counseling centers. Phototherapy was administered to three subjects and the three-part cognitive model was presented to one subject for a 6-week course of the therapies. The results of this study failed to support the theory that phototherapy is efficacious in the treatment of the depression associated with seasonal affective disorder. Although phototherapy results were inconclusive and cannot be generalized on the basis of a small subject sample, it would seem appropriate to include in treatment planning some cognitive work for SAD sufferers. These findings to dot discredit that premise; however, they do indicate that a cognitive model may be an appropriate adjunctive or alternative therapy. (ABL)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Masters Theses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Phototherapy; Seasonal Affective Disorder
Note: M.S. Thesis, Moorhead State University.