Red light therapy is also known as photobiomodulation (PBM) or low level light therapy (LLLT) and sometimes cold laser therapy. It’s considered low level because it has a lower energy density when compared to higher intensity laser therapies.
It has been proven effective for a wide range of healing and rejuvenating uses including anti-aging, hair loss prevention & regrowth, skin conditions, wound healing, muscle pain relief, increases energy during the day, improves sleep quality at night, helps with inflammation, recovery in athletics and much more. It is a 100% guilt-free, natural therapy with zero side effects.
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 revitalization through increased blood flow, collagen stimulation and more.
Basics of a Red Light Therapy Treatment
Sunlight comprises the entire visible light spectrum (400-700nm) as well as ultraviolet (300-400nm) and infrared light (600-900nm). Of course, too much exposure to ultraviolet rays damage the skin. However, there is a ‘therapeutic window’ of light that lies in the 600-900nm wavelength range that has been shown to have some specific, measurable benefits on the human body.
Red and near infrared light fall into the ‘therapeutic window’ of light between wavelengths of 650 to 1350nm. Because wavelengths in this range allows easier penetration of light into the human skin tissue, they are commonly used in PMB or LLLT. Wavelengths from 600-700nm (red light) are used for superficial tissue while longer wavelengths of 780-950nm (near infrared light) are used on deeper tissue
A high-quality red light therapy device like Vitalizen’s uses medical-grade LEDs to deliver concentrated wavelengths of natural light to your skin and cells, without harmful UV rays or unnecessary heat. Just sit or stand near a device for 10-15 minutes daily to charge your cells. The more areas of your body are covered, the more your cells absorb natural light, and the more life-changing benefits you can expect to see by using the device continuously.
Skin Health & Anti-Aging: Studies have found red light therapy reduces signs of aging, speeds up the healing process of wounds and scars, and boosts natural collagen production. In one double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 74% of the participants reported a visible improvement in fine lines and wrinkles. Natural red and near-infrared light has also been found in clinical trials to have a therapeutic effect on the symptoms of painful skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema, herpes, and acne.
Healing Wounds & Burns: Red light therapy has been shown in trials to help with the healing of wounds, burns, and scars by initiating the release of cytokines and chemokines in cells. In a 2018 study of light therapy and chronic wounds in diabetes patients, researchers found that the group treated with an LED device for 8 weeks resulted in scars with a smaller mean surface area compared to the non-LED group.
Melatonin & Sleep: Artificial light can mess up your circadian rhythm, but red and near-infrared light does the opposite and helps reset your internal body clock. Clinical studies show red light therapy also increases natural melatonin production for healthier and deeper sleep.
Muscle Recovery & Physical Performance: When you workout rigorously and perform at a high physical level, muscle recovery is necessary. Red light therapy helps the body recuperate from the pain and strain of an intense workout faster. Being able to train continuously and keep the body healthy is the best natural way to attain a competitive advantage, regardless of what sport you play. Red light therapy not only helps you recover, but it also stimulates the growth of muscles. One study—from the European Journal of Applied Physiology—compared muscle growth and strength between two groups of athletes—one using red light therapy combined with exercise, the other using exercise alone. Researchers demonstrated that muscle thickness and strength were significantly improved in those who used red light therapy.
Joint Pain & Inflammation: In 2000, a systematic review in The Journal of Rheumatology set out to see just how effective red light therapy could be for arthritis. This review found significant results across thirteen randomized controlled trials. The best results were demonstrated in people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, with red light therapy reducing participants’ pain by 70 percent compared to the placebo.
Increased Cognitive Function: One clinical study of men and women with a history of traumatic brain injury were administered red and NIR light therapy treatment for their brains in 18 sessions over 6 weeks. The researchers noted improved sleep, better executive functions, improved social functioning, and an increased ability to perform tasks and activities. Participants also reported improvements in depression, anxiety, headaches, and overall cognition.
When choosing the right near-infrared and red light therapy device, you want to select a device that’s long-lasting, has a great warranty, is well-manufactured, and most importantly, one that offers the correct wavelengths at the right power density that covers a large area.
Here are the most important things to look for specifically include the near-infrared and red light therapy devices:
Wavelength: The best ranges are of 630-680nm and 800-880nm.
Size of the light and treatment area: Get something that you do not have to hold and ideally, a full body red light therapy device that covers the entire body whether you are standing up or sitting down.
Warranty: Look for at least one year or longer.
You may want to get a red light therapy device that offers spa-worthy treatment in the comfort of your own home. While treatments from health professionals and doctors using red/NIR light therapy can cost hundreds of dollars, a wise one-time investment in a high-quality red light therapy device will allow you to do treatments at home that would cost tens of thousands of dollars if you were to go to an anti-aging clinic or doctor’s office for treatment that you pay per session.