Take regular daylight breaks at work

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In dark workplaces in particular, it is worth looking for daylight during breaks. © Christin Klose/dpa-tmn

Many employees get little or no daylight at their workplace. Like poorly lit workplaces, this can have negative effects. What helps?

Berlin – If there is little or no daylight at your workplace, you should at least spend your breaks in natural light. That’s the advice of Gerold Soestmeyer, head of the lighting department at the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV).

As the expert explains in an interview with the magazine “Arbeit & Gesundheit” (issue 01/2022), it has “very positive effects” if employees go out into the daylight every now and then.

Businesses can support that. For example, by creating opportunities for breaks that are protected from the wind and rain or by having lounges where employees get daylight.

Daylight strengthens the internal clock and wakes you up

According to the lighting expert, daylight strengthens the inner clock and wakes you up because of the high proportion of blue. If you sit directly at a window, you quickly get 5000 to 6000 lux, depending on the direction of view. The workplace ordinance, on the other hand, only prescribes 500 lux for normal office work.

According to Soestmeyer, where artificial light is used at the workplace, it is important to ensure a sensible combination of indirect and direct lighting. This ensures that not only the workplace itself, but also the surroundings are sufficiently illuminated. Unpleasant shadows or diffuse light are avoided. dpa


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