Going Back to the Usual
Fluorescent light fixtures remind most of us of stores, hospitals and offices. The types of places that need their superior illumination employ specifically designed fixtures to house fluorescent bulbs. This is a practical decision because fluorescent bulbs require replacement less frequently than incandescent bulbs which justifies the expense of special wiring and fixtures.
Fluorescent light fixtures are generally not practical for home use due to the relatively expensive wiring and fixtures. Additionally, most people find fluorescent lighting to be uncomfortable and unpleasant. Fluorescent bulbs have been known to cause headaches and agitation in some people because they tend to flicker, however imperceptibly. People suffering from autism have a very negative reaction to fluorescent lighting. Aesthetically, most people find this type of lighting to be unflattering because it is a blue light which does not look good on human skin. Most people find the effect of fluorescent light to be glaring.
A more practical alternative for the home is using compact fluorescent light fixtures. This type of lighting does not require special fixtures because compact fluorescent bulbs can be used anywhere standard incandescent bulbs are. The degree of blue in this lighting is much less so compact fluorescent bulbs are just as pleasant as standard bulbs. However, these bulbs still have the problem with flickering although, much less so than standard fluorescent bulbs. If someone with autism or even a heightened sensitivity to flickering light lives in the home, it is a good idea to try one bulb out before switching all the bulbs in the house.
Although there are some drawbacks, compact fluorescent bulbs can be a cost effective alternative in the home. They use less energy than incandescent bulbs and require less frequent replacement. They have the benefits of fluorescent bulbs without the expense of standard fluorescent equipment.