Red Light Therapy is a popular option for rejuvenating the skin and possesses other benefits as well. Many claims are made, such as anti-aging advantages and faster recovery of damaged tissue. There are many concerns and questions about this therapy, so we thought it would be a good idea to take a closer look.
The idea of repairing the skin and improving the skin’s condition with a pure light seems farfetched. Our experts analyzed the science behind this technology to help identify whether this is an effective and safe procedure. We share our findings with you below.
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What is Red Light Therapy?
Red light therapy is otherwise called photobiomodulation (PBM), low-level light therapy, biostimulation, photonic stimulation or light box therapy.
The therapy can be described as alternative medicine of some sort that applies low-level (low-power) lasers or light-emitting diodes (LEDs) to the surface of the body.
Low-power lasers are claimed to relieve pain or to stimulate and enhance cell function. It is also popularly used for insomnia treatment.
Red light therapy includes having low-power red light wavelengths explicitly discharged through the skin. This procedure can’t be felt and does not cause pain because it does not produce any form of heat.
Red light is absorbed into the skin to a depth of about eight to 10 millimeters, at which point it has positive effects on cellular energy and multiple nervous systems and metabolic processes.
Red light therapy is used for treating:
Wrinkles and skin discoloration, and more.
How Did Red Light Therapy Start?
Endre Mester, a Hungarian physician, and surgeon are credited with the discovery of the biological effects of low power lasers; which happened a few years after the 1960 invention of the ruby laser and the 1961 invention of the helium-neon (HeNe) laser.
Mester founded the Laser Research Center at the Semmelweis Medical University in Budapest in 1974 and continued working there for the rest of his life. His children continued his work and imported it to the United States.
By 1987 companies selling lasers were claiming they could treat pain, accelerate healing of sports injuries, and more, but there was little evidence for this at that time.
Mester originally called this approach “laser biostimulation,” but it soon became known as “low-level laser therapy” or “red light therapy.” With light emitting diodes adapted by those studying this approach, it then became known as “low-level light therapy,” and to resolve confusion around the exact meaning of “low level,” the term “photobiomodulation” arose.
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Red Light Therapy Claims
The manufacturers of low-power lasers often claim that red light therapy products like the bed and pad among others do relieve pain or stimulate and enhance cell function.
Red light therapy generally claims to help jump-start the process of tissue recovery in a natural way and other forms of rejuvenation through increased blood flow, collagen stimulation for reducing wrinkles, and more.
Red Light Therapy “Ingredients”
There are no ingredients for the therapy. However, there is a lot of equipment that can be used for red light therapy, some of which are listed below.
Cold Laser for chiropractic
Red laser devices
Keep in mind that you should consult with your physician before starting the therapy.
Does Red Light Therapy Work?
That is the million dollar question. The answer to this question depends on the reason red light therapy is used.
The mechanism by which the therapy works is not clear, and despite a lack of consensus on its validity, some studies suggest that the therapy may be modestly effective.
Red Light Therapy Benefits
Red light therapy has a variety of benefits ranging from neuro-muscular benefits to skin care and others. Some benefits of the therapy include:
Promotes hair growth
Details On Red Light Therapy And Weight Loss
Red light therapy and weight loss have been a primary argument between supporters and critics of the therapy. According to Photomedicine and Laser Surgery showed that red light could affect hunger, which reduces the intake of extra fat into the body.
How To Use Red Light Therapy
You’ll use red light according to the directions where you’re receiving the treatment.
Red Light Therapy Cost
Based on where you receive your treatment, the cost varies. For example, the cost of the therapy at Planet Fitness is included with your Black card membership.
Red Light Therapy Side Effects
Relating to safety, red light therapy appears to be safe. There are the chance the therapy side effects may be localized burning of the skin.
Red Light Therapy Product Warnings
Red light therapy appears safe. However, there are some warnings when using the therapy.
Do not aim laser beams into the eyes and everyone present should wear appropriate safety glasses.
Treatment over a tattoo with higher irradiance laser may cause pain as the dye absorbs the laser energy and gets hot.
Hair on the head
Treatment of the head and neck with high irradiance laser may cause pain as the melanin in the fine superficial hair follicle absorbs a lot of the laser energy.
Very dark skin
Occasionally some people with very dark skin feel an unpleasant amount of heat.
What Users Are Saying
“This is an outstanding device that has the power to penetrate the skin with red light therapy and help to open up blood vessels to assist in healing, tissue recovery, and pain relief.”
“Nothing but a glorified red flashlight. FALSE claims that it relieves pain. Followed the instructions and nothing.”
“Have had this for about two months and it does help with minor pain such as arthritis. Severe pain in my neck was not helped much.”
The Bottom Line on Red Light Therapy
Red light therapy is an alternative to traditional therapies, claiming to help improve skin, reduce acne, and acts as an anti-aging treatment. While there are therapy before and after photos showing its effectiveness, there’s little research supporting any claims.
There are benefits of the therapy, but there are also programs to add to any lifestyle plan that help you stay on track.
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Also known as low-level laser therapy or LLLT, red light therapy is the use of a therapeutic tool that emits low-light red wavelengths. This type of therapy is used on a person’s skin to help stimulate blood flow, encourage skin cells to regenerate, encourage collagen production, and other purposes.
What are the side effects of Red Light Therapy?
Light Therapy or Red Light Therapy, side effects may include skin irritation, rash, headache, burning, redness, headaches, and insomnia.
Does Red Light Therapy work?
There are limited studies showing the effectiveness of Red Light Therapy.
How long does it take for Red Light Therapy to work?
It is not an immediate miracle transformation that will occur overnight. It will provide you with ongoing improvements that you will begin to see in anywhere from 24 hours to 2 months, depending on the condition, its severity, and how regularly the light is used.
Is Red Light Therapy FDA approved?
The therapy isn’t what gets the approval; it’s the device that must go through the FDA approval process. Each manufactured device must prove that it works and is safe to use. So yes, red light therapy has been FDA approved. But not all red light therapy devices have FDA approval.
Can Red Light damage eyes?
Red Light Therapy is safer on the eyes than other lasers, proper eye protection should be worn while treatments are underway.
Can Red Light Therapy help with bags under eye?
Some Red Light Therapy devices claim to help reduce eye puffiness and dark circles under the eyes.
Can Red Light Therapy help with weight loss?
There is some evidence to show Red Light Therapy can help aid in weight-loss and reduce cellulite, though results will vary with every user.
Do dermatologists recommend Red Light Therapy?
According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, Red Light Therapy is currently being investigated by dermatologists for its potential to help individuals with acne, rosacea, and wrinkles.
Do you wear clothes during Red Light Therapy?
The treatment area needs to be exposed during the Red Light Therapy, meaning no clothes should be worn on that area.
How long does it take for Red Light Therapy to work?
Although results will depend on the user, benefits should be seen within 8-12 weeks of treatment sessions.
What are the benefits of Red Light Therapy?
Some of the potential benefits of Red Light Therapy include aiding in cosmetic skin issues like wrinkling, stretch marks, and acne. It is currently being studied for its potential to aid in weight loss, psoriasis, and more.