I had no previous health conditions, optical sensitivity or problems with headaches, until exposed to a lot of CFL lighting at a conference centre in Birmingham. Every time they switched the lights on I felt as if my head was swelling and splitting, with intense burning followed by long-lasting nausea and agitation, like the shaking inside after an electric shock. I’ve had similar reactions ever since when exposed to CFL lighting, especially naked bulbs. Bright, blue-ish LEDs also make me feel agitated and nauseous.
I’m perfectly well if I stay away from these lights, but that means staying away from my children’s school, the health centre and hospital, most churches and Meeting Houses, libraries, swimming pools… much of life as I knew it. This makes for severe restraints, on my life and my families. The time the symptoms last depend on the length of exposure to the lighting, but for ages afterwards I feel incredibly drained and down, and ‘wrong’ all over.
“…they drain peace, hope, and happiness out of the air around them… Get too near a Dementor and every good feeling, every happy memory will be sucked out of you.”
JK Rowling was writing about Dementors, ‘foul, soul-sucking‘ creatures, but that’s the closest description I can find about how I feel around CFL lighting.