Is the phase-out of inefficient lighting bad news for people who suffer from migraine headaches?
Although fluorescent lights have long been blamed for causing or intensifying migraine headaches, technology improvements have largely addressed this problem, especially for CFLs. Magnetic ballasts run fluorescent lamps at about 60 cycles per second, which causes the lamps to flicker noticeably and may cause headaches and other irritants. The new generation of energy-efficient fluorescent lamps – including ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs – use electronic ballasts, which operate at a minimum of 40,000 cycles per second. This rapid cycling eliminates the perceptible flicker associated with health complaints. Another possible source of headaches is glare from poorly designed lighting – but that applies regardless of the light source.