How to Use Red Light Therapy to Reduce Inflammation

How to Use Red Light Therapy to Reduce Inflammation

A number of health conditions, from acne to cancer, have found inflammation to be a major contributing factor. It is possible to reduce the appearance of persistent skin ailments and even prevent some diseases from emerging by precisely targeting inflammation.

The big question is, does red light therapy work? The good news is that research has revealed that red light therapy can be an effective anti-inflammatory treatment. At-home red light therapy is a solution for decreasing inflammation and improving general health.

What’s Inflammation?

Inflammation is a process in which the body's white blood cells protect us from getting an infection from bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens. It can also occur in response to injuries or tissue damage. When we think of inflammation, it is usually viewed in a negative light; however, it is actually a major part of the body's immune system.

The body's immune system is working hard to protect us, resulting in symptoms such as pain, redness, heat, tenderness, fever, swelling, exhaustion, and even depression. All of these are indications of inflammation.

If not addressed, continual inflammation can develop into dangerous illnesses, such as asthma, cancer, autoimmune issues, diabetes, heart disease, and many more.

Different Categories of Inflammation

In order to determine if inflammation is helpful or detrimental, it is necessary to assess the period of time it lasts. It can be difficult to recognize the harmful kind of inflammation as it may not show any signs until it has caused serious damage.

Acute Inflammation

Acute inflammation is a short-term condition that is characterized by a rapid onset of swelling and pain. It is the body’s response to injury or infection and is marked by redness, heat, and swelling. This type of inflammation is often accompanied by pain, itching, and loss of function. It is a protective response of the body intended to remove harmful agents and start the healing process.

The body's reaction to a virus, bacteria, or harm is typically swift and results in an acute inflammatory response. This form of inflammation is temporary and an important part of the recovery process.

Once the infection-causing microbe is eliminated from the body, the accompanying inflammation and soreness will abate. This process can span anything from a few hours to a couple of weeks, depending on the issue the body is addressing.

Chronic Swelling

This is a long-term swelling of the body's tissues. This type of inflammation can last for months or years and can often be difficult to treat. It may be caused by a variety of factors, including environmental toxins, poor diet, or even genetics. It can lead to a number of health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer. Treating chronic inflammation requires an individualized approach, as the underlying causes vary from person to person. Making changes to diet, lifestyle, and environment can help to reduce inflammation and improve health.

Without much detection, systemic inflammation of a small degree can lead to major health issues. This could manifest in the form of a wound that is not healing correctly, a virus that refuses to leave the body after being treated, or a diet and environment that constantly puts the body under strain.

Chronic inflammation, commonly referred to as a silent killer, can be wreaking havoc on the body, even if no clear symptoms are present. This includes harm to one's DNA.

The Dangers Associated with Inflammation

Inflammation can be a potential hazard if not addressed properly. It has been linked to a variety of health issues, including heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. It is important to keep track of inflammation levels in order to minimize any potential risks.

Over time, inflammation that doesn't heal can have serious repercussions. It starts with genetic material and can spread throughout the body, even if the original site of inflammation is localized.

DNA Damage

Mutations, including cancer, can be caused by chronic inflammation damaging the DNA. Studies have found that 25% of human cancers have been linked to DNA damage, which has been detected in the vicinity of numerous cancers.

The inflammatory process not only induces damage to DNA, but it also hinders the repair of the DNA. The significance of DNA damage is considerable. Aside from its role in cancer, it is the main contributor to accelerated aging. Everyone will experience aging; however, when DNA damage has occurred, the process is expedited. The aging process goes beyond the surface of the skin, and can cause the deterioration of tissue and organ function.

It can be difficult to avoid causing harm to our DNA, however, red light therapy can help.

Poor Cell Functionality

The creation of energy by cells is often hindered by chronic inflammation that is caused by oxidative stress. This then leads to a domino effect, not only on the cells but also on the system to which they belong. Inevitably, the entire body experiences some degree of inflammation and distress.

The impairment of mitochondrial activity, referred to as mitochondrial dysfunction, has been linked to a range of persistent afflictions and illnesses. When a cell is not capable of generating sufficient energy, its performance is reduced. Consequently, it cannot perform its tasks, fix itself, or replicate itself effectively.

The accumulation of unhealthy cells in one area or across the entire body can result in a variety of medical issues such as metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative diseases, cancer, depression, autoimmune diseases, osteoporosis, and more.

To bolster the body's recovery capabilities and avoid illnesses, it is necessary to routinely manage any persistent inflammation, whether it is noticeable or not.

Impaired Immunity

The effects of chronic inflammation on the human body can be severe, leading to a weakened immune system response. The body's ability to ward off pathogens is impaired by ongoing inflammation, leading to an increased vulnerability to illnesses and viruses. For those who have weakened immune systems, the risk is amplified.

Ways to Manage and Treat Persistent Inflammation

Adjusting one's lifestyle can be beneficial, and red light therapy is another option. Before we move on, we should discuss the risks associated with taking anti-inflammatory medications.

Using Drugs to Treat Inflammation

We’re familiar with the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to ease pain. These usually prove successful in the short term. However, the effects of using NSAIDs, in the long run, are concerning.

The traditional treatment for an injury includes blocking the body's acute inflammatory response. If this is blocked, it can result in chronic pain that is more difficult to manage. It was determined that the use of NSAIDs in the short term could extend the amount of time that pain and inflammation persist. McGill University researchers Parisien et al. have uncovered that using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for pain might extend the time of the pain and amplify the potential for chronic pain in a recent study. When using a mouse model, the researchers found that using pain-blocking NSAIDs caused the pain to last for up to ten times longer than usual. This was not seen with other forms of pain relief.

When the pain was medicated with steroids such as dexamethazone, a similar prolonged response to pain was observed. An immediate alleviation of the pain was noted, however, the inflammation and soreness lingered afterward.

Large-scale Analysis

The authors of the study reported that their results were corroborated by a separate assessment of 500,000 people in the United Kingdom. It was observed that individuals who consumed NSAIDs for pain relief were more prone to enduring pain two to ten years later; however, those taking acetaminophen (Tylenol) did not experience this effect. Acetaminophen is not classified as an NSAID.

The use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for treating inflammation and providing short-term pain relief can come with potential adverse reactions. Is there a better solution? Yes, but first, let us examine some changes to our lifestyle that could help support our recovery plan.

Lifestyle Habits to Decrease Inflammation

  • Minimize the amount of time spent in direct sunlight to avoid oxidative damage due to the UVA/UVB rays.
  • Consume fewer or no processed foods, such as grilled and prepared meats.
  • Incorporate more produce high in antioxidants into your meals.
  • Put on gloves to reduce contact with chemicals (such as those used in home cleaning products).
  • Combat stress through engaging in meditative practices, taking up fun activities, and participating in physical activity.
  • Make sure to consume an adequate amount of water.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Incorporate physical activity into your routine and strive for a balanced body weight.
  • Give yourself the time to heal after physical activity and sickness.
  • Ensure that you are sleeping enough.

It has been suggested that Red Light Therapy can be beneficial in areas such as aiding with sleep, aiding in the healing process, managing body weight, and counteracting the detrimental impacts of sun overexposure.

Using Red Light to Treat Inflammation

Healers in ancient times turned to the sun to help with a range of physical and mental illnesses. Even in the present day, some medical professionals suggest moderate sun exposure to treat specific skin issues such as acne, as well as a variety of mental health problems.

Researchers have identified red and NIR (near red) light as the most effective for aiding in healing nowadays. The body's tissues have a deep response to red and NIR light treatment since it is a non-invasive form of therapy. This type of therapy is highly effective at stimulating cellular energy production and decreasing inflammation, which are the root of most physical and medical issues.

Bringing down inflammation and restoring mitochondrial efficiency are the two key objectives of red light therapy. Hundreds of studies have proven that red light therapy is a natural, non-medical, non-invasive approach for treating inflammation and alleviating pain. These studies include not only those related to inflammation but also those concerning relief from pain and other signs.

Harvard Researcher Dr. Hamblin

In his powerful paper, the highly regarded light therapy researcher Dr. Michael Hamblin declared that one of the most dependable impacts of PBM (photobiomodulation using red and near infrared light) is an overall decrease in inflammation. This is particularly relevant for issues of the joints, traumatic injuries, pulmonary conditions, and also in the brain.

According to Dr. Hamblin, during the initial stages of an acute inflammatory phase, red light triggers both inflammatory and anti-inflammatory reactions. It has been demonstrated that red light therapy promotes inflammation at the beginning of the healing process and then works to reduce it when the acute healing stage is over. This was particularly evident in research on chronic diabetic wounds in mice.

Dr. Hamblin presented the means by which red light therapy can control inflammation in scientific studies conducted on animals and humans around conditions such as arthritis, strength, pain, respiratory inflammation, head wounds, spinal cord injury, autoimmune conditions, abdominal flatulence, achilles tendinopathy, thyroiditis, psoriasis, and alopecia areata (an autoimmune illness that impairs hair follicles causing hair loss).

According to Dr. Hamblin, it appears that light applied to the body has a systemic effect which can have a positive impact on distant tissues and organs. The potential of red light therapy to reduce neuroinflammation in the brain and central nervous system merits further exploration. It is also worth researching whether red light therapy can be beneficial in treating modern-day chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer's disease, cardiovascular disease, and endothelial dysfunction, which all involve systemic inflammation.

Results of many other research projects corroborate the anti-inflammatory properties of red light therapy. This suggests that red light therapy could be employed to both address existing problems arising from inflammation and to proactively guard against the development of chronic inflammation throughout the body.


Using Red Light Therapy to Mitigate Aging Caused by Inflammation

It's been demonstrated that red and near infrared light therapy is beneficial for DNA repair and synthesis, making it a potent anti-aging remedy. By increasing blood flow, and collagen and elastin production, the renewal of skin cells will be increased, allowing you to "reverse age" your skin and appear much younger.

Use of Red Light Therapy for Treating Inflammatory Skin Conditions

Red light therapy is an effective treatment for chronic inflammatory skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, acne, and rosacea. The amount of time for substantial improvement of a condition can vary, but it typically takes between one and four months of daily treatment.

Ongoing light therapy is essential for achieving and sustaining outcomes. Since red light therapy is accepted as safe for long-term use, it can be employed to inhibit chronic inflammation and thus thwart future flare-ups.

Relationship Between Blue Light Therapy and Inflammation

Blue light therapy is often used to address acne due to its efficiency in eliminating bacteria that can lead to breakouts.

The results of a recent study have shown that inflammation, not bacteria, is responsible for the emergence of acne. The inflammation process causes the oxygen content of sebum in the pores and hair follicles to drop, making it an ideal environment for the anaerobic bacteria Propionibacterium acnes (p.acnes) to thrive.

When p.acnes settle in the oxygen-poor environment, it sets off a secondary inflammatory response manifesting itself in the form of red, swollen pimples. Blue light therapy can be a successful way to treat acne on the surface. Complementing this with red light therapy is a useful approach to tackle the inflammation that is often the root of acne.

Easing Pain Relief Using Red Light Therapy

Red Light Therapy has been found to be effective in providing relief from inflammation and pain. It has been demonstrated to be a successful treatment for a variety of conditions. This form of therapy is relatively non-invasive and is becoming more popular as a natural remedy for many ailments.

Pain and inflammation are closely linked. When the body experiences pain, it is an indication that something is not right. The spot exhibiting the pain is always accompanied by inflammation, however, it is possible to have inflammation without pain.

Injury, overuse, or an autoimmune disorder may be the root of joint pain, and it is typically accompanied by inflammation. Red light therapy could be a potential solution to reduce the pain by eliminating the inflammation.

Numerous studies have verified that red light therapy (RLT) can be an effective treatment for chronic issues such as low back pain and osteoarthritis joint pain. There is a considerable amount of evidence on how RLT can be used to manage arthritis as well.

An assessment by researchers of 22 randomized tests on knee osteoarthritis pain, hip arthroplasty, and hand osteoarthritis revealed that the majority of groups that were given low level laser therapy (LLLT) experienced substantial alleviation of pain, improved function, and an increased quality of life.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition in which the body's immune system mistakenly targets the synovial lining of the joints. This can affect the bones, cartilage, tendons, and ligaments, and if left untreated, can lead to the destruction of the joint. Fortunately, this type of arthritis can be treated effectively with near infrared light therapy. This form of light therapy is effective in helping to repair the joint and reducing inflammation and pain.

Benefits of Red Light Therapy on Healing Wounds

Research has demonstrated that the use of 660 nm red light during light therapy can have a positive effect on a person's healing process. In particular, studies have revealed that red light can reduce inflammation and promote faster healing by increasing cell growth and migration near a wound site. A study published by the International Journal of Photoenergy was able to confirm this.

The healing of wounds is a complex process divided into three distinct phases: acute inflammation, proliferation, and remodeling. Red light therapy can be utilized to facilitate healing at a cellular level in wounds.

Using Red Light Panel Treatment for Inflammation

It is essential to have an ongoing strategy for dealing with and avoiding inflammation. So it makes sense to opt for a tool that provides both the potency necessary to introduce photons into the cells but also an FDA-cleared medical-grade device—one that has both red and near infrared wavelengths.

Utilizing a Mixture of Red and Near Infrared Rays

Utilizing red light for treating inflammation of the skin has been found to be beneficial for managing inflammatory disorders like acne, psoriasis, eczema, and rosacea. The near infrared spectrum has longer wavelengths, which means they can reach deeper into the body to address issues such as inflammation in the joints, muscles, brain, nerves, and bones.

By combining five distinct red/NIR wavelengths, the effects of each one are increased and the penetration of the light is more extensive, reaching deep into the skin and even into the bones, the connective tissues, organs, and muscles of the body.

Have Short Sessions of Light Therapy on a Regular Basis

It is suggested that short daily sessions of light therapy (between 3-20 minutes) are most beneficial. Keeping to a consistent schedule is essential in order to reduce inflammation and provide the body with an opportunity to heal and repair the afflicted area.

RedShift: A Superior Anti-Inflammatory Light Therapy

The REDSHIFT series offers premium light energy output for its category, with a combination of two red and three near infrared wavelengths. Moreover, its modular design allows users to expand both power and coverage by adding panels.

The selection of light therapy panels available depends on the individual's primary health needs.  The treatment area and light intensity of these panels vary significantly. Additionally, they are modular, allowing you to begin with a smaller panel and, if necessary, add more later.

A daily red light therapy session of short duration can be used to address a wide variety of conditions.

  • Lessening inflammation
  • Increasing cellular energy production
  • Enhancing circulation
  • Enhancing collagen and elastin production

Red light therapy is an all-natural, side-effect-free treatment that provides a variety of health benefits. These four main mechanisms of action are why it is such an important part of a thorough health regimen.

It’s no surprise that this is the top choice for anti-ageing since inflammation-induced mitochondrial dysfunction is one of the primary causes of wrinkles and drooping, papery skin.

Nowadays, many medical professionals are advocating red light therapy to be part of the treatment for inflammatory illnesses, autoimmune diseases, and chronic health issues.

If you have any inquiries or want extra details about our red light therapy panels, please don't hesitate to contact us.

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