Chromotherapy is popularly known as color light therapy. Chromotherapy is a scientific method of using colored rays of light to treat physical and mental health disorders. Chromotherapy is a form of phototherapy. Both the visible and invisible color rays are administered through a spectrum of colored lights. They can also be applied mentally through suggestion.
Color has proven biological and psychological effect on all living beings, be it human, animal or plants. Humans, animals and plants are constantly moving towards light and cannot live without light. Plants need sun to grow. Human beings also require light for maintaining bodily function.
Concept of color
Color is light and light is energy. Scientists have found that actual physiological changes take place in human beings when they are exposed to certain colors of light. Colors can stimulate, excite, depress, tranquilize, increase appetite and create a feeling of warmth or coolness. This is known as chromo dynamics. Sun has been worshipped by all ancient civilizations. From the sun, comes light and color. Color light therapy our biological clock, immune, sexual, endocrine and nervous systems to function.
Different colors have different effects on human beings. The color blue is known to reduce headache; red causes hypertension; digestive problems are relieved by yellow, green and blue. Yellow is beneficial in treating certain mental disorders. The colors violet and purple are associated with the head; red is associated with the heart and the colors yellow, blue and green are associated with the organs of digestion.
While the colors yellow, orange and red are associated with the heat of sun and fire, blue, green and violet are symbolic of the coolness of leaves, sea and the sky. Warm colors seem closer to the viewer than cool colors. Our psychological responses which are subjective play a key role in Chromotherapy. Primary colors relate respectively to the body, the mind, the emotions and the essential balance between these three.
The psychological properties of the eleven basic colors are briefly examined below. Each of these colors stands for a relative positive and negative character respectively. The qualities exhibited by the colors are only symbolic and not specific.
Red symbolizes physical courage, strength, warmth, energy, basic survival, stimulation, masculinity and excitement. In its negative connotation, red can stand for defiance, and aggression.
Blue is the color of the intellectual. It stands for intelligence, communication, trust, efficiency, serenity, duty and logic. It can also connote coldness and lack of emotion.
Yellow is the color of the Emotions. It stands for Optimism, confidence, self-esteem, emotional strength and creativity. It also reflects irrationality, fear, emotional fragility, and anxiety.
Green is considered the color of balance. It is the harbinger of harmony, balance, environmental awareness and peace. It can also denote stagnation.
Violet is a spiritual color symbolizing spiritual awareness, vision, luxury, authenticity and truth. It also reflects introversion and suppression.
Orange color stands for warmth, security, sensuality, passion and abundance. It also inspires frivolity and immaturity.
Pink stands for physical tranquility, femininity, love and sexuality. It also symbolizes inhibition, emotional claustrophobia and physical weakness
Grey on the positive side is Psychological neutrality and negative side Lack of confidence, dampness, depression, hibernation, lack of energy.
Black stands for Sophistication, glamour, security, emotional safety, efficiency, and substance. It also reveals Oppression, coldness, menace, heaviness.
White is symbolic of hygiene, sterility, clarity, purity, cleanness and simplicity. On the other hand, it reflects sterility and elitism.
Brown reflects seriousness, warmth, nature and earthiness. It also symbolizes lack of humor as well as lack of sophistication.
Color can be used in a number of ways to promote health and healing. Color therapy is used to treat both physical and emotional problems. Color therapy involves exposure to colored lights, massages using color-saturated oils, contemplating and visualizing colors, even wearing colored clothing and eating colored foods. Various products like color therapy oils, bath crystals, soaps, meditation cards and glasses for the eyes are available in the markets. These claim to have soothing color effects on the user.
Color Therapy Oils
Color therapy oils claim to build color energy. They can be used in the bath along with color therapy salts or alone as perfume oil. These sun-charged oils incorporate natural color from different parts of fruits or flowers to infuse color into a base of rich jojoba, sunflower and safflower oils.
Color Therapy Bath Crystals
Color therapy bath crystals contain natural sea salts and are suitable for a bath or foot soak. They help relax, rejuvenate, and revitalize the skin, tone up the body and claim to make for a healing experience
Color Therapy Glasses
These refer to the color therapy glasses - lightweight, enhanced with color optic lenses. Daylight activates the colored lenses and utilizes healing color therapy where it is absorbed the best - through the eyes.
History of color therapy
Historical evidence reveals that the relationship between light (color) and health dates back centuries. Color has played a role in healing for centuries. Patients were treated in rooms specifically designed to break up the sun's rays into the colors of the spectrum at the temple of Heliopolis in ancient Egypt. People made regular pilgrimages to the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, to take advantage of the healing colors of the exotic plants and flowers found there.
In India, practitioners of one of the oldest systems of health care, Ayurveda taught that specific colors corresponded with each of the seven charkas. The charkas are the energy centers that represent organs, emotions and aspects of the spirit. Modern day color therapy was born in the late 17th century when the famous English philosopher and mathematician Sir Isaac Newton conducted his prism experiments and showed that light is truly a mixture of colors from the visible spectrum.
The physician chooses those colors that are in tune with the patients' pathology after making initial diagnosis on three levels namely anatomy, energy and psychology. Chromotherapy is of two types:
Luminous Chromatotherapy is the method of sending colored luminous rays, obtained by a white light going through filters of specific wavelengths. These filters are perceived by the naked eye as colors. Luminous Chromotherapy works at curing pains caused by traumas. It also helps to improve memory, relieves anxiety, stress and depression.
Molecular Chromotherapy uses the same wavelengths as the colored luminous chromotherapy but here the colored filters are not emanating from the light but from matter. Molecular Chromotherapy is used at two different level; one at the skin level: by local application through the use of ointments. The other is the oral way, either in liquid form or homeopathic grains.
By observing the colors a person chooses or rejects, the therapist can learn a good deal about a subject's psychological state. For example, if a person selects darker colors, it suggests a need for rest and stress reduction.
- It is always advised to seek conventional care instead of color therapy for serious ailments.
- People taking treatment for epilepsy should use caution when looking at flashing lights.
- If you are taking prescription drugs read the warning label to make sure that no side effects are induced if your skin is exposed to bright light.
Color therapy benefits
- Insomnia or lack of sleep. Chromotherapy is used to restore normal sleep patterns in people who cannot fall asleep at night or who wake up too early in the morning.
- Depression, chronic anxiety or stress
- Pre menstrual syndrome
- Panic attacks
- Jet lags
- Eating disorders - anorexia nervosa and bulimia
- A condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) stems from the lack of exposure to full-spectrum of light.
- UV Light which is sometimes marketed as sun lamps helps to neutralize toxins in the body.
- UV blood irradiation exposure kills germs such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi inside the body and neutralizes toxins in the blood.
Chromatotherapy in Feng Shui
Feng Shui believes that color can affect a person's physical and psychological well being. The colors used in Feng shui have specific wavelengths of energy associated with the five elements in nature. Each of the five elements symbolizes a specific color - earth is yellow; fire is red; water is black; wood is green; and metal is white. The colors are used to balance energies or stimulate specific reactions in our selves.