What is Red Light Therapy and How Does it Work?

Heliotherapy has been used for centuries to heal various ailments. It is a treatment that uses red light to stimulate the cells in your body, which then promotes healing and tissue repair. The benefits of red light therapy are many, but it also has risks.

In this article, we’ll discuss what you need to know about red light therapy before you make any decisions about whether or not you want to give it a try!

What is Red Light Therapy?

Red light therapy uses specific wavelengths of red and infrared lights to improve health, heal injuries, reduce pain and inflammation. The scientific name for it is photobiomodulation (PBM). 

There are different types of red light therapies: 

  1. Low-Level Light Therapy (LLLT), which includes: LASERs or LED devices; 
  2. Photo Dynamic Therapy (PDT), in which red light is used with a photosensitizing agent; 
  3. Trans-dermal Light Delivery Systems, where the skin’s surface is penetrated by low-level lasers or LED devices.

How Does Red Light Therapy Work?

Red light therapy involves the use of red lights to stimulate or revitalize cells.

Red light has a wavelength of between 620 and 700 nanometers, suitable for human tissues because it penetrates up to three centimeters into tissue without heating it. It became more popular when NASA began using LED lights to improve astronauts’ recovery during and after space flights.



Medical and alternative health professionals increasingly use red light therapy as a treatment for various conditions. It has been found to improve the production of collagen, elastin, and other proteins in skin cells that contribute to the firmness and elasticity of young-looking skin. 

What Does It Treat?

Red light therapy can be used to treat a variety of health conditions.


Red light therapy is most commonly used to treat acne. The treatment has been proven in clinical studies to work and can be an effective alternative for those who prefer not to use acne medication.


As we age, our skin’s collagen production slows down. This causes fine lines and wrinkles to form. Red light therapy stimulates the body to produce more collagen for a healthy glow from within!

Red light therapy is a great way to reduce the appearance of aging without having to use harmful chemicals or invasive procedures that may leave scars behind. 

Wound Healing

Red light therapy is an effective treatment for wound healing. Low-level laser therapy, cold lasers, and red lights have all been shown to accelerate the recovery rate from wounds like burns, ulcers, and cuts.

Hair Loss

Red light therapy is a non-invasive treatment that uses red and near-infrared wavelengths of light to stimulate hair growth. The therapy is done with a device that has lights on it. It emits these wavelengths of light absorbed by the
cytochrome c oxidase (COX) enzyme in your cells, stimulating new hair growth.

The treatment does not use energy from lasers or heat to stimulate hair follicles, making it safe for all skin tones. The lights are safe to use on your scalp, face, or other body parts where hair is growing.

Red light therapy does not require you to get your scalp or skin shaved, so it is a great option for men and women who want their natural hair back without shaving any part of the body. The treatment works on all hair types, including gray hairs and white hairs that often show up after chemotherapy treatments.

Weight Loss

Red light therapy has been used for centuries as a way to fight weight loss and skin issues. It is said that Cleopatra herself was an advocate of red light therapy, using the sun’s rays on her face to maintain its youthful appearance. These days, this treatment is popular because it can be done in the privacy of your own home.

For weight loss purposes, red light helps burn fat by increasing metabolism and boosting testosterone levels.

What Are The Risks?

There are a few side effects, but these can easily be avoided by using light therapy only when needed and being careful not to use it for too long. 

The most common of them is eye strain which may result in headaches, irritability, or even dizziness. They usually go away after you stop treatment sessions, so there’s no need to worry.

Other side effects may include skin redness and flushing, feeling hot or cold during the therapy sessions, which can be easily avoided by placing a warm towel on your face before starting the treatment. The last common side effect is elevated sensitivity of eyes to light after using the machine, but it doesn’t last long.

So if you want to reduce wrinkles, puffiness, treating acne, and other conditions without spending money on expensive surgeries red light therapy device may be the answer.



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