Give Your Hair Some Much Needed TLC With Red Light Therapy
By Joy Stephenson-Laws, JD, Founder
The great Maya Angelou once said, “I would say that hair is a woman's glory and that you share that glory with your family. And they get to see you braiding it and they get to see you washing it. But it is not a bad thing or a good thing, it's hair.”
For me, taking care of my hair has always been important to me. Just like healthy skin, healthy hair is often a telltale sign of overall good health. Hair, which is mostly made of a protein called keratin, needs key nutrients in order to be maintained and be healthy and strong.
But as life happens, as in getting older, being under a lot of stress, having babies (hello postpartum hair loss!) and going through menopause, our hair most definitely may need some extra TLC. And from personal experience, I can say that this is where red light therapy proves to be just the ticket.
Red light therapy (RLT) is a form of low-level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) and is offered in many medical office settings. Think of it as like a healthy tanning bed. During a session, the light delivers wavelengths of natural red and near infrared light. It’s like the wavelengths you get from sunlight without the harmful UV rays.
RLT is popular for treating skin issues such as wrinkles, acne, scars, sun damage and more. The light is absorbed by the skin and can stimulate the production of collagen, elastin and other molecules that are important for healthy skin. While often used to inspire skin and wrinkle repair, red light therapy is also able to stimulate bone growth and recovery as well as soft tissue repair. It is so powerful and effective that NASA used RLT to keep astronauts healthy while in space.
“Red light therapy is thought to work by acting on the ‘power plant’ in your body’s cells called mitochondria. With more energy, other cells can do their work more efficiently, such as repairing skin, boosting new cell growth and enhancing skin rejuvenation. More specifically, certain cells absorb light wavelengths and are stimulated to work,” according to the Cleveland Clinic.
So it makes sense that red light therapy would have a positive influence on hair growth and health, especially when you look at it from the perspective that hair grows from your scalp which is skin. Scalp health is so important for healthy hair and growth that there are professionals called trichologists that specialize in dealing with scalp issues.
Red Light therapy is usually administered in a series of sessions, with each session lasting anywhere from a few minutes to hours, depending on the specific treatment being used. For the past year, I have undergone monthly sessions (ranging from five to 10 minutes) for the purpose of treating my hair and encouraging more growth and thickness.
Honestly, I am amazed by the results and cannot believe that I did not start doing this earlier in my life (especially after having my son almost 30 years ago and experiencing postpartum hair loss for a year, which is very common).
Because of RLT, I experience very little hair loss and have noticed that my hair is not as prone to breakage. This therapy combined with a healthy diet, drinking plenty of water and practicing good stress management has enabled me to have my best head of hair yet.
Whether your concerns are balding, thinning, breakage or length retention, you may be a great candidate for red light therapy. Please note that if you are pregnant or diabetic, red light therapy is not recommended. As always, speak with your doctor or a competent healthcare professional.
Treat yourself to red light therapy. You may be pleasantly surprised to see that when you address your hair woes, you will be very inspired to better yourself overall by eating healthily, drinking more water, getting better sleep, moving more and pampering yourself.
You deserve it!
Enjoy your healthy life!
Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice. Please consult with your doctor or another competent healthcare practitioner to get specific medical advice for your situation.
The pH professional health care team includes recognized experts from a variety of health care and related disciplines, including physicians, attorneys, nutritionists, nurses, and certified fitness instructors. This team also includes the members of the pH Medical Advisory Board, which constantly monitors all pH programs, products, and services. To learn more about the pH Medical Advisory Board, click here.