Bright lights can make you feel observed and the environment feel harsh and uninviting. A darker space with more subtle lighting can instantly feel less intimidating, more relaxing, safer and more intimate,
At home it’s easy to create a calm environment using candles, tea lights, fairy lights and dimmer switches to make soft, ambient lighting. You can get this set up and ready towards the end of your pregnancy and even make use of it while you're listening to your MP3s to help you relax fully.
A hospital/birth centre setting just requires a little bit more planning, but you can still adapt the lighting to suit you and help create the right environment. Find out what facilities are available locally to you. Most birth centres have high tech lighting systems with different settings for creating the perfect mood. Labour suites may not be quite so well kitted out but you can request for the lights to be dimmed and take along your own mood lighting (check what you are allowed but electric candles or battery powered fairy lights work well).
Or why not take an eye mask in your hospital bag, just incase. Whatever the lighting, wherever you are, whoever is with you, you can shut it all out and focus by simply putting your eye mask on.