BRIM Bergen Research group for intervention and mental health across the Lifespan
Research project


Optimal light conditions for improved memory and mood

The ENLIGHT project explores the effects of light on cognitive and emotional processing.
Louise Bjerrum

Main content

The ENLIGHT project investigates whether light therapy represents an effective way to improve the lives of people with dementia. The lack of studies on light as a non-pharmacological therapy including people with dementia makes this important for further theoretical and methodological development.

The overall aim of ENLIGHT is to investigate how different light conditions affect cognition and mood. The study is divided into two Work Package(WP)s, consisting of exposure to four different light conditions; blue, red, bright white, and dim white light.

WP1 tests the acute effects of light on different aspect of cognition: vigilance, working memory, and inhibition. WP2 tests the acute effects of light on different aspects of emotional processing: emotion recognition (perception of positive, negative and neutral facial expressions), and implicit emotional learning (conditioning). The two WPs also tests how light acutely affects saliva melatonin and heart rate variability. The experiments will take place in The Human Light Lab at the Faculty of Psychology. 

WP1 and 2 include three groups: young healthy adults, seniors with no cognitive impairment and people with dementia. This could give an insight into whether any variation in effect is due to dementia or age-related changes.