Red light therapy seems to be gaining an enormous amount of popularity in recent years, and for very good reasons. This breakthrough treatment, first discovered by NASA, has so many benefits and uses, and so little (if any) risks and side effects. Deep penetrating red light therapy is actually a non invasive, cost-effective, and risk-free alternative to all sorts of skin problems, skin appearance, and is proven to be effective for all sorts of pain.
Through emitting red, low-light wavelengths through the skin, red light therapy helps naturally jump-start the process of tissue recovery and other forms of rejuvenation through increased blood flow, collagen stimulation and more. 2010 marked the 50th anniversary for medical laser treatments like red light therapy, providing a host of evidence on their benefits.
If you’ve never heard of red light therapy before, you might already be familiar with other terms that are used to describe this treatment, such as low level laser therapy (LLLT), biostimulation (BIOS), photonic stimulation or simply light box therapy. Red light is considered “low level” because it works at an energy density that’s low compared to other forms of laser therapies.
Red light therapies have come a long way, but do they really work? Clinical studies show that, yes, red lightbox therapies have certain healing capabilities and medical applications thanks to the way they positively affect the human endocrine and immune systems. LLLT is now FDA-approved for treating conditions like chronic joint pain and slow-to-heal wounds. In the near future, we can expect approval for many more conditions thanks to red light benefits, such as increased immunity, tissue repair, anti-aging effects, improved joints and more.
Red light therapy involves having low-power red light wavelengths emitted directly through the skin, although this process cannot be felt and isn’t painful because it doesn’t produce any heat.
Red light can be 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 system and metabolic processes.
Red light therapy has shown promise for treating symptoms of joint pain or osteoarthritis due to aging, those caused by cancer treatments like chemotherapy or radiation, hair loss, wounds or incisions, acne, wrinkles and skin discoloration, chronic muscular pain, neurological damage, and tissue damage (often at the root of tears, sprains or pulls). As you’ll learn, even seeing the color red is physically stimulating, primes our senses and gets our blood pumping, so imagine what red light penetrating right into your body can do.
Although there is still controversy over this treatment and more research needed, according to the company Light Therapy Options LLC, there are virtually “no known adverse side effects” of red light therapy treatments, rather a growing list of many anti-aging benefits.
Red light easily penetrates the skin, boosts circulation and bringing more blood and nutrients to the area. It also stimulates vital collagen and elastin production. Collagen helps plump the skin, while elastin firms the skin. The red light is energizing and repairing damaged cells, stimulating collagen and elastin and giving the skin back its youthful look. Home devices for skin rejuvenation typically use visible red light at a wavelength of 660nm – That penetrates tissue to a depth of about 8-10 mm – Making it more beneficial for treating problems close to the surface of the skin, such as:
1. Wrinkles and fine lines
2. Tightening and firming (non-surgical face lift alternative,)
3. Blemishes and redness
5. Age spots and hyperpigmentation on face, hands, neck
6. Acne scars
As it was pointed out above, red light promotes the healing of the skin and so can be used effectively for many skin problems, without medication (we all know their dangerous side effects), and chemical-loaded lotions and creams. You can use a portable device for these conditions (Warning: Do not use it if you have an active skin infection):
2. Acne Scars
6. Athlete’s foot
Red light therapy for pain relief is a gentle, non-invasive, drug-free, and chemical-free alternative that has been shown to reduce and in some cases even eliminate aches and pains. At first it sounds ridiculous. How can light help with my chronic back pain? Well, it’s quite simple. The infrared light (invisible light) penetrates deeper in our body and repairs or regenerates cell components. The infrared light also activates the production of endorphins and blocks pain-transmitting chemicals. The portable devices for this purpose typically use Infrared light (deep penetrating light) – at 880nm, which penetrates to a depth of about 30-40 mm, making it an effective pain relief for:
1. Herniated and bulging discs
2. Muscle related back pain
5. Pulled and strained muscles, Muscle spasms
7. Nerve injuries
8. Sports injuries: bone fractures and chips, sprains, tennis elbow etc.
9. Neck pain and stiffness
Different types of phototherapy light boxes have actually been used for decades to treat numerous mood-related, skin, sleep-related, and acute or chronic pain conditions.
A 2012 report published in Annals in Biomedical Engineering stated that red light is used in three primary ways: “to reduce inflammation, edema, and chronic joint disorders; to promote healing of wounds, deeper tissues, and nerves; and to treat neurological disorders and pain.” It’s been found that red light therapy promotes stronger immunity and longevity by increasing cell proliferation and migration, as well as modulating levels of cytokines, growth factors and inflammatory mediators.
Starting in the late 1990s, NASA scientists began developing infrared light technologies that could be used for plant growth during shuttle missions. What they discovered over the past two-plus decades is that red light therapies could also provide healing cellular stimulation in humans and animals.