Red Light Therapy
What is it and where did it start?
Red light therapy, abbreviated RLT, uses low wavelength red light to, most commonly, treat surface level skin issues.
In the 90’s, scientists used RLT to aid plant growth in space. They found the red light-emitting diodes (LEDs) progressed photosynthesis, promoting cell growth. These findings drove curiosity to the potential effects it could have in medicine, and on the human cell, with hopes it could be used in wound healing and easing bone density issues due to the lack of gravity in space.
You can now find numerous different red light practices. RLT is used in salon beds for cosmetic purposes (reducing fine lines and stretch marks), medical centers to treat more complicated issues, from wound treatment to reducing skin changes from chemotherapy, and even in hand-held devices.
How does it work?
Red light is thought to strengthen the mitochondria in cells, where cell energy is created. More energy = higher efficiency to rejuvenate and heal damage.
When used alongside medicine, the light acts as an activating agent.
Why the hype now?
Red light therapy differs from other laser therapies in that it causes no damage to the skin’s surface. Most lasers partly destroy the skin in order to stimulate repair and regrowth. RLT penetrates beneath the skin’s surface to rejuvenate deeper.
The internet is well-versed in surfacing false information, and RLT is one of the many topics to be backed by inaccuracies. The following results are said to be true of RLT, yet there is very little evidence…
- treats depression
- stimulates the lymphatic system to “detoxify”
- boosts immunity
- reduces cellulite
- aids weight loss
- helps muscle pain
- fights dental infections
- clears acne
- fights cancer
Blue light therapy is known for its treatment of acne, and white light has better results than red light in reducing symptoms of depression.
However, many medical practitioners have come to implement RLT in their own practices and currently trust it to…
- Generate wound healing
- Repair tissue
- Help alopecia
- Reduce psoriasis lesions
- Aid short-term pain relief and joint stiffness from arthritis
- Improve complexion
- Build collagen
- Minimize wrinkles and damage from the sun
- Reduce inflammation
- …and much more
Is it safe?
RLT, aside from minimal reports of burns or blisters from misuse, is considered safe, and pain-free. Eye protection is still recommended when submerged in red light, although it is still much safer on the eyes than the majority of lasers. Red Light Therapy: Uses, Benefits, and Risks (healthline.com)
Is RLT for you?
If you are looking into solutions for minor skin issues or cosmetic rejuvenation, RLT might be a great option to look into. Now you can easily try it out from the comfort of your home with numerous options to order online that can aid your specific needs. If you are looking for a result outside of cosmetic improvement, consulting your doctor or dermatologist is highly recommended. They can point you in the right direction and recommend red light therapy if it is most suitable for you.