Red Light Therapy is a therapeutic technique which utilizes low-level red-light wavelengths to treat a range of skin problems like wounds, scars and wrinkles together with other conditions. How can it help us to improve our overall well-being? Read on and find out.
During the 1990s, red light therapy was employed by scientists for growing plants in space and it was during this process that they discovered the intense light produced by red LEDs (light-emitting diodes) promotes photosynthesis and growth of the plant cells.
It was then that red light began to be studied for its possible benefits in the world of medicine with tests being carried out to see if RLT increased the energy in human cells to treat bone density problems, slow healing of wounds, and muscle atrophy (1).
What Is Red Light Therapy?
Red light therapy or RLT is sometimes called PBM or photobiomodulation, LLLT or low-level light therapy, cold laser therapy, soft laser therapy, biostimulation, LPLT or low power laser therapy or photonic stimulation. There are several kinds of RLT with both medical and beauty applications.
It can treat serious conditions such as psoriasis and slow-to-heal wounds as well as cosmetic issues like wrinkles and stretch marks.
RLT works by producing biochemical effects in the cells to strengthen their mitochondria. These are the cell’s powerhouse where the energy of the cell is created.
ATP is the energy-carrying molecule that can be found inside the cells and when RLT increases the mitochondria’s function, it makes more ATP.
As a result, cells have more energy which enables them to rejuvenate themselves, repair damage and function more effectively.
Unlike other IPL or laser therapies, RLT doesn’t damage the surface of the skin. Instead, it stimulates skin regeneration to offer a host of benefits including:
- Promotion of tissue repair and wound healing
- Improved hair growth
- Treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome
- Stimulated healing of wounds that are slow to heal
- Reduction of psoriasis lesions
- Relief of stiffness and pain in those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis
- Reduction of side effects from cancer treatments
- Improved complexion and increased collagen for diminished wrinkles
- Repairing of sun damage
- Prevention of recurring cold sores
- Improved joint health in those with osteoarthritis
- Diminished scars
- Relief of inflammation and pain
As you can see, there are several reasons why you should consider having Red Light Therapy to boost your overall health and well-being.
You can find red light therapy in use for cosmetic purposes in day spas, gyms and tanning salons. However, there are also several FDA-approved Red Light Therapy (RLT) devices that you can buy for use at home.
While these won’t be as powerful as those which you can find in medical use, they are effective at combating unwanted signs of premature aging such as fine lines, wrinkles, and age spots (2).
If you want to treat a medical condition, however, you’ll need to discuss the options available to you with a doctor to ensure you reap maximum benefits.
RLT is painless and safe if the devices are used properly. There have been stories of some people getting burns because of device corrosion, broken wires or because they fell asleep with their unit still in place.
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However, when the instructions are followed properly, red light therapy isn’t harmful. It is, however, very important to use eye protection since red light can potentially damage the eyes.
Since RLT has been shown to have promising results when it comes to treating several skin problems, it is well worth adding into your regular skincare regime.
If you’re concerned about your symptoms, you may wish to consult your doctor first to make sure that Red light Therapy is the best option for you, but for many people, the benefits of red light therapy make the investment in a red light-emitting device well worth it.