What Is Red Light Therapy And How Does It Work?

While it was initially used to grow plants in space, the benefits of red light therapy for our skin are only now starting to be studied, and in turn embraced.

Considered to stimulate the production of collagen, elastin, and fibroblasts, it’s gaining popularity as a way to combat wrinkles, scarring and even arthritis. A pain free and non-invasive procedure, red light therapy is also known by many other names including:

  • Photobiomodulation (PBM)
  • Low level light therapy (LLLT)
  • Soft laser therapy
  • Cold laser therapy
  • Biostimulation
  • Photonic stimulation
  • Low-power laser therapy (LPLT)

What Is Red Light Therapy?

Depending on who you ask, red light therapy (RLT) is a treatment that may help skin, muscle tissue, and other parts of your body heal. It exposes you and your skin to low levels of red or near-infrared light. Infrared light is a type of energy your eyes can't see, but your body can feel as heat. Red light is similar to infrared, but you can see it.

As a holistic health treatment, red light therapy is considered to be effective because light intake (or exposure to it) is crucial for our overall health. Just like water, sleep and the nutrients we absorb from food, light is essential for our cellular function and energy production. Wavelengths of healthy light stimulate the mitochondria and help us create ATP energy more efficiently, with less inflammation and oxidative stress that is considered to “clog up” the process.

Red light is thought to work by producing a biochemical effect in cells that strengthens the mitochondria. The mitochondria is considered to be the powerhouse of the cell, as it’s where the cell’s energy is created. The energy-carrying molecule found in the cells of all living things is called ATP (adenosine triphosphate).

However, it’s not as simple as sticking a red light bulb into your desk lamp. It’s not the same type of light used in tanning booths or solariums, and it doesn’t expose your skin to damaging UV rays - so what are the perks?

What Are The Benefits Of Red Light Therapy?

Is red light therapy really a magical one stop shop for fixing every physical ailment that you have? Perhaps not, but there is evidence to show that red light therapy can be a beneficial treatment method for the following:

  • Promotes wound healing and tissue repair
  • Improves hair growth function in people with androgenic alopecia
  • Help for the short-term treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Stimulates healing of slow-healing wounds, such as diabetic foot ulcers
  • Reduces psoriasis induced lesions
  • Aids with short-term pain relief and morning stiffness in people with rheumatoid arthritis
  • Reduction in some of the side effects of cancer treatments, including oral mucositis
  • Improves skin complexion and builds natural collagen to help reduce wrinkles
  • Prevents recurring cold sores from herpes simplex virus infections
  • Improves joint health in people with degenerative osteoarthritis
  • Helps to diminish scars and sun damage
  • Overall pain relief caused by inflammation
  • Increase in muscle activity and increase in time before fatigue is observed

Want To Learn More About Natural Alternatives?

Red light therapy is just one of the many modern holistic health approaches now available as an alternative to pharmaceuticals. If you are looking to improve your overall health via natural alternatives and are looking for assistance in regards to what to consume, then knowledge is power.

Anita Flego is a Transformational Health Coach, who has over twenty years experience in the health and natural therapies industry. Originally from Switzerland and a firm believer in natural health education and empowerment, these days you’ll find Anita based in Burleigh Heads on the Gold Coast.

Passionate about natural and alternative medicine, Anita and her team at Live Young Clinic offer a wide range of products, treatments and services for those looking to kickstart their wellness journey. To book in your free ten minute phone consultation, get in touch with Anita today.