Improve Skin Health with Red Light Therapy

The following, are some of the most common skin problems;


In an article published by the Cleveland clinic, skin problems or disorders were described as illnesses that affect the skin. Rashes, inflammation, itching, and other skin abnormalities are usually caused by several disorders. Some skin disorders are caused by genetics, while others are caused by lifestyle factors. Medications, lotions, and ointments, as well as lifestyle changes, may be used to treat skin diseases.

 

According to the Dermatology and Laser group, the skin is the largest organ in the human body, despite the fact that most people don't think of it as such. As a result, it necessitates a great deal of attention and care. Multiple skin problems can emerge on the skin even with adequate skin care. Some of these issues are mild, while others necessitate medical attention.

The following, are some of the most common skin problems;

  • Acne- This causes oil, germs, and dead skin to build up in your pores due to blocked skin follicles.
  • Eczema- This is also known as atopic dermatitis and is a dry, itchy skin condition that causes swelling, cracking, and scaly skin.
  • Psoriasis- This is a scaly skin condition that can increase in size and feel hot.
  • Raynaud's phenomenon- This is characterized by a reduction in blood flow to your fingers, toes, or other body parts, resulting in numbness or a change in skin color.
  • Rosacea- This is characterized by flushed, thick skin and pimples, which generally appear on the face.
  • Skin cancer- This is characterized by the uncontrolled proliferation of abnormal skin cells.

Skin aging is another skin problem which is quite popular and would be the main focus of this article. If you would like to gain deeper understanding of what skin aging is, what leads to skin aging and how skin aging can be controlled, you should read on.

What is Skin aging?

Skin aging, according to an article published in the United States National Library of Medicine is a process which causes phenotypic changes in epidermal cells, as well as structural and functional alterations in extracellular matrix components including collagen and elastin. Wrinkling, loss of elasticity, laxity, and a rough-textured look are all symptoms of skin aging.

The skin has a significant cosmetic role in addition to protecting the body from water loss and microbial infection.  Sustained youthful appearance and beauty may have a positive impact on people's behavioral and reproductive status.

Organ aging, on the other hand, begins when a person is born, and the skin is no exception. When one gets older, the skin, as the largest organ of the body, develops apparent and visible signs of aging.

The Cleveland Clinic has listed the following as the visible signs of Skin aging;

  • Skin becomes¬†rough, dry, and itchy
  • Skin becomes slack and hangs freely when the elastic tissue (elastin and collagen) in the¬†skin deteriorates with age.
  • Thinning of the epidermis (top layer of the skin) and dermis causes a transparent skin surface (deeper layer of the skin).
  • Flattening of the area where the epidermis and dermis (layer of skin beneath the epidermis) meet causes increased skin fragility.
  • Bruises are more likely to occur as the skin ages. Thinner blood vessel walls are to blame for this.
  • Skin lesions, such as non-cancerous (benign) tumors, are more likely to develop.

In an article published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, it was revealed that both external and internal factors cause skin aging. External aging is caused by external factors such as air pollution, poor nutrition, smoking and sun exposure, and results in coarse wrinkles, laxity, loss of elasticity and a rough-textured appearance. The second form of aging which is inherent is an inevitable physiological process that results in thin, dry skin, fine wrinkles, and gradual dermal atrophy. Long-term exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun is the primary cause of external skin aging, which is known as photoaging.

What is Photoaging?

To synthesize vitamin D, everyone requires some sun exposure (which helps calcium absorption for stronger and healthier bones). However, exposure to the sun's ultraviolet (UV) radiation without protection can harm the skin, eyes, and immune system. It has the potential to cause cancer. Other elements, such as heredity and the environment, play a role. Sunburn and excessive UV radiation exposure, on the other hand, can cause skin damage. This harm can result in skin cancer or photoaging.

 

The skin's reaction to UV rays is tan. The skin produces more melanin when UV rays contact it. The color (pigment) that induces tanning is melanin. Skin cancer is not prevented by tanning.

The Sun and the Skin

According to the Centre for Science Education, the Sun's energy reaches the planet in the form of visible, infrared, and ultraviolet (UV) photons. UVA is composed of wavelengths ranging from 320 to 400 nanometers (nanometers). UVB wavelengths range from 280 to 320 nanometers. UVC wavelengths range from 100 to 280 nanometers. UVA and UVB ultraviolet radiation are the only ones that reach the earth's surface. UVC wavelengths are absorbed by the earth's atmosphere. UVB rays cause far more skin cancer than UVA rays.

 

The source cited above further stated that UVA rays, on the other hand, cause skin to age, wrinkle, and lose elasticity. UVA also amplifies UVB's harmful effects, such as skin cancer and cataracts. UV rays react with melanin in the majority of cases. That is the skin’s first line of defense against the sun.  This is because melanin absorbs UV rays, which can cause major skin damage. When the amount of UV damage exceeds the amount of protection that the skin's melanin can give, a sunburn occurs. The skin's response to UV damage is represented as a suntan. A small amount of exposure to the sun is both healthful and enjoyable. However, too much of a good thing can be deadly. Overexposure to sunlight should be avoided at all costs. Cancer risks, premature skin aging, cataract formation, and other negative impacts can all be reduced by taking these precautions.

Difference between Ultraviolet light and Visible Light (Red light)

The Centre for Science Education, stated that it’s worth noting that ultraviolet (UV) "light" is a form of electromagnetic radiation. The wavelength of UV light is shorter than that of visible light. When referring to visible light, we use the term "color" to describe the many wavelengths of light that make up the visible spectrum. The wavelength of red light is roughly 650 nm, while the wavelength of blue light is about 440 nm. The UV section of the spectrum has several regions that correspond to specific wavelengths of UV radiation, similar to the diverse colors of visible light.

Red Light Therapy

Red light therapy (RLT), according to WebMD is a procedure that may aid in the healing of skin, muscle tissue, and other body parts. It exposes the body to red or near-infrared light at modest intensities. Infrared light is a sort of energy that the eyes cannot see but which the body perceives as heat. Red light is identical to infrared light; however, it is visible.

 

Low-level laser treatment (LLLT), low-power laser therapy (LPLT), and photobiomodulation are all terms for red light therapy (PBM).

Scientists employed Red light therapy to grow plants in space in the early 1990s. The researchers discovered that the bright light from red light-emitting diodes (LEDs) aided plant cell development and photosynthesis.

 

The potential of red light in medicine was next investigated, with the goal of determining whether red light therapy could enhance energy within human cells. Red light therapy could be an effective treatment for muscular atrophy, slow wound healing, and bone density concerns caused by weightlessness during space travel.

How it works

An article published in Healthline.com revealed that Red light therapy involves exposing the skin to a red-light lamp, gadget, or laser. Mitochondria, also known as the "power generators" of the cells, absorb it and use it to produce more energy. This, according to some scientists, helps cells repair themselves and grow healthier. This promotes skin and muscular tissue repair.

 

Photodynamic treatment is the term used when red light therapy is combined with photosensitizing drugs. The light only acts as an activator for the medication in this type of therapy.

 

Red light therapy comes in a variety of forms. Red light beds, which may be seen in salons, are supposed to aid in the reduction of cosmetic skin concerns such as stretch marks and wrinkles. In a medical office setting, red light therapy can be used to treat more serious illnesses like psoriasis, slow-healing wounds, and even chemotherapy side effects.

 

WebMD further stated that the skin is not injured or burned by red light therapy since it employs very low levels of heat. It is not the same type of light used in tanning salons, and it does not expose your skin to UV rays that are harmful to your skin.

How does Red-Light Therapy Promote Skin Health?

Medical News Today have stated that Red-Light Therapy promotes skin health and aids rejuvenation of the skin by doing the following;

  • Collagen formation in the skin is increased, thereby giving the skin its suppleness.
  • Increases the development of fibroblasts, which aid in the creation of collagen and other tissue fibers.
  • Increases the flow of blood between the cells of the body.
  • Increases mRNA in the cells, which helps excite the cell Protects the cells from damage
  • Improves facial texture and wrinkle severity by reducing fine lines on the skin.

The above mentioned author further stated that Red-Light Therapy also has the ability to;

‚ąö Aid Skin rejuvenation
‚ąö Enhance the skin's appearance
‚ąö Improve the Skin texture

Forms of light therapy are promising alternatives for the treatment of acne vulgaris, according to a review in Seminars in Cutaneous Medicine and Surgery. 

The sebaceous glands can be influenced by sunlight. Sebum is produced by the sebaceous glands, which can block pores and cause acne. Sunlight may be beneficial in calming hyperactive glands.

Red Light Therapy is a potentially useful treatment for acne vulgaris when used alone or in combination with other treatments such as blue light therapy. The light appears to penetrate deep into the skin, affecting sebum production and reducing inflammation and irritation.

Protecting your skin from the Sun

According to an article published by John Hopkins Medicine, limiting your exposure to the sun and protecting your skin are the greatest ways to protect yourself from its harmful effects. To all exposed skin, apply a broad-spectrum water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 30. The term "broad spectrum" refers to the fact that the sunscreen shields you from both UVA and UVB rays. After swimming or sweating, reapply every 2 hours or so. When feasible, dress in protective gear such as a long-sleeved shirt, slacks, a broad hat, and sunglasses.  When the weather permits, seek shade. Between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., the sun's rays are at their brightest. Seek shade if your shadow is shorter than you. 

When near water, snow, or sand, use extreme caution. They reflect the sun's harmful beams. This can make you more susceptible to sunburn.

Conclusion

The irreversibility of skin aging and people's desire for an eternally youthful appearance are incompatible. Many attempts have been made from ancient to modern times to grasp the facts of cutaneous aging and to prevent or even reverse the aging process. In as much as skin aging cannot be prevented internally, quite a lot can be done to control it externally. The theory of skin aging, the role the sun has to play in its process, the role of red-light therapy in healing the skin and how the process can be physically controlled have all been outlined in this article. Controlling the aging process of the skin is the key to sustaining a youthful appearance.