Red light therapy is quickly gaining traction in healthcare and lifestyle circles. In the following article we will talk about its benefits.
When a person first hears about red light therapy (RLT), they can often come away with the sense that they have found the holy grail of health treatments. It does sound and look like actual magic.
With just the flick of a switch, a heavy dose of red light that comes from a device is thought to be a cure for everything starting from acne to sore muscles from the level of the cells. It does not include any chemicals nor does it have any down time. With such fanciful offerings, you may indeed start to wonder, is it too good to be true?
While most studies do point to the fact that this RLT therapy holds a number of benefits, they also do mention that there is a bit of controversy in it as well. In the following passages we will talk about how the therapy model works and which of its benefits are real and which are most likely to be a hoax.
What is Red Light Therapy?
RLT is a light therapy model that works by exposing the patient to concentrated wavelengths of natural light into their skin. It is then absorbed by the cells of the body.
This stimulates certain reactions in the body which results in increased production of collagen, elasting and fibroblasts. These things in turn enhance the level of ATP in the body. ATP is where the cells of the body get its energy from. Numerous studies have shown that RLT also causes boosts in the circulation, which results in there being more oxygen and nutrients available to the cells.
So what does this mean? It basically means that when you undergo a RLT session, the regenerative properties of the body are boosted up. This will give the user benefits such as skin that looks younger, faster muscle repair and also a lessening of scarring on the body.
As the results of RLT therapy are becoming more and more pronounced, there are also quickly becoming many more sources of this therapy. RLT can now be found in professional wellness spots, local spas or even gyms of the more fancy variety.
All of these places now have RLT therapy devices that cater to the full body and also more targeted RLT devices. Nowadays there is also the option of DIY RLT therapies via the use of a handheld RLT device.
It is important to note here that it isn’t just any old red light that helps deliver this performance boost but rather it is red lights of two very specific varieties. The red light that works are of wavelengths in between 660 and 850 nanometers.
The first one, of the 660 nanometer variety, is particularly adept at treating skin conditions as it is very quickly absorbed by the skin. The 850 nanometer one can penetrate a lot deeper in the body and can be put to such uses as muscle recovery, for joint pain and full body health.
What this means is that you cannot just use any red light available and expect to get the same results. When you visit professional RLT therapy providing places, these things will be taken care of but if you are trying to go DIY about it, make sure that the device you are getting specifies an output intensity. The benefits of red light therapy are listed below.
The proponents of RLT speak of almost Wolverine-like wound healing capabilities of this therapy model. A lot of studies do exist that give credence to their beliefs. A particular study in 2014 confirmed that RLT promotes increased tissue repair and healing properties. The study also found that this therapy model has a lot of benefits in the skin department as well. It helps with wrinkles, scarring, acne etc.
Repair and Recovery of Muscles
When we talk about the repair and recovery process of muscles, a lot of studies have proposed that RLT is beneficial both before and after workouts. A study conducted in 2014 found that this therapy model, when used correctly, led to less muscle strength loss, a lot less soreness in the muscles and it also showed that there were a lot fewer impairments in the range of motion department. A much more recent study also showed that RLT pre and post workout also reduced problems in the knee due to heavy workouts.
One of the most definitive benefits of this therapy model is the reduction in inflammation and pain. A lot of research has shown RLT to be particularly effective in battling certain kinds of knee pain, meniscus tears, general pain in the knee and also be effective in fighting back pain. The research on this is so conclusive that even the FDA has approved it for treating small scale pains and arthritis
One of the most well known and popular uses of RLT is its effectiveness in fighting skin conditions like acne. While it would not be recommended to treat severe acne with RLT only, it is however a very beneficial complementary treatment method that is extremely safe and inexpensive.
RLT is able to help fight a lot of issues of the skin because of the anti-inflammatory effects it has on the body. It is also responsible for decreasing the production of oil in the skin and the levels of bacteria in the skin. There is no need for any drying effects nor the need for any harsh chemicals.
So, as we can see, while it is not nearly magical enough to be labelled a magic health tip, it still does a lot of jobs for us very well. The benefits listed above should be enough to make you at least consider red light therapy for its many well documented benefits.