See Your Dermatologist First
Before trying any new treatment for your psoriasis, its best to talk with a board-certified dermatologist. This doctor may offer advice that can make blue light more effective for you. To give you the best results, a board-certified dermatologist may recommend a different treatment.
Either way, by seeing a board-certified dermatologist, youll also make sure that youre using the mix of treatment, skin care, and trigger avoidance thats right for you.
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How Does Red Light Therapy For Psoriasis Work
Psoriasis is a systematic skin disease that affects up to eight million people in the USA alone. Around 2-3 percent of the world population suffer from the same issue. These statistics are pretty alarming, considering that psoriasis has no cure. A person who has it can only do so much to ease the symptoms to ensure that the disease wont affect their quality of life.
There are many treatments that are successfully used for managing psoriasis. One of those methods includes red light therapy also known as low-level laser therapy. Using red light therapy for psoriasis has been shown to be effective for reducing inflammation, itchiness and speed up skin regeneration.
In this article, we dive deep into psoriasis symptoms and treatments and explain how red light therapy can help the condition.
Is Rlt At Home For Psoriasis Safe
Extensive studies that have been conducted around red light therapy didnt identify any adverse effects associated with the treatment. Therefore, getting red light exposure at home is entirely safe. With that said, we recommend you get a professional opinion before starting RLT for psoriasis. Make sure you visit the doctor and ensure that red light exposure is the most optimal course of action for treating your individual condition.
Written By Matthew CalderaMatthew Caldera is the founder and CEO of nuYOU LED, a leading provider of red light therapy devices. As a dedicated biohacker and RLT specialist, Matthew aims to make science-backed information about red light therapy and self-improvement more accessible to everyone. To achieve his goal, Matthew uses up-to-date research materials and converts them into easily digestible articles, answering frequently asked questions of those interested in the power of red light.Connect with Matthew on
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How Does Light Therapy Work
Consider the visible light spectrum, which comprises all the colors that exist. On one side of the spectrum is red light, which has the longest wavelengths and lowest frequency on the other is violet light, which has the shortest wavelengths and highest frequency. Collectively, the colors of the visible light spectrum create white light, which is what our eye perceives when we see sunlight.
LED light therapy uses different wavelengths of light that have been shown to effectively treat various health concerns. Some treatments use blue light, or green, or amber but the most effective wavelengths are red light sometimes called low-level light therapy or photobiomodulation.
All LED light treatments operate with the same basic principle, which is that certain wavelengths of light trigger biological processes that are beneficial for the body.
Years of research have shown that, when certain wavelengths of light penetrate the body, they stimulate mitochondria, which are tiny, energy-producing organelles found inside cells. Once energized, these mitochondria produce more of the compound adenosine triphosphate , which is an energy source thats used and stored at the cellular level.
Pulsed Dye Laser Treatment And Its Mechanism
PDL is the preferred therapy for most superficial cutaneous vascular lesions. In recent years, it has been used in some clinical researches to treat non-vascular indications, such as psoriasis, acne vulgaris, papulopustular rosacea, hypertrophic scar, and so on . Erceg et al. have reviewed the efficacy of PDL for inflammatory skin disease and concluded that PDL is an effective and safe method to treat localized plaque psoriasis. In accordance with this, a prospective randomized controlled study was performed to compare the efficacy of PDL with UVB-TL01 in plaque psoriasis. PDL parameters used were 585 nm, a pulse duration of 0.45 ms, and a spot size of 7 mm with spot overlapping about 20% at fluencies 5.56.5 J/cm2 for a total of four treatments at an interval of 3 weeks between two treatments. Improvement of psoriasis lesions was noted at the 13th week, yet with no significant differences between PDL and UVB . A within-patient controlled prospective trial of treatment of localized plaque psoriasis with excimer and PDL showed that excimer and PDL were useful treatments for plaque psoriasis with long-term remission, but psoriasis severity index improvement was significantly greater in excimer than PDL . Studies of PDL in psoriasis also reported low clearance rate, which could be improved by applying keratolytics with salicylic acid on psoriatic plaques before PDL treatment .
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New Light Therapy For Psoriasis
January 2, 2014 by Louanna
Using light therapy to treat psoriasis is one of the oldest known ways that this skin disease was treated. In fact, sunlight was one of the first treatments that was used to help to ease the symptoms of the condition. Now, there is a new type of light therapy that is proving beneficial for psoriasis treatment.
A recent study published in the journal of Photomedicine and Laser Surgery showed that the use of red and infrared LED light therapy has shown to be very promising in treating this condition. In the study, patients used a combination of near infrared light and red light . Though considered to be a preliminary study, over a period of 4 to 5 weeks, with two 20-minute sessions every 48 hours, clearance rates during the follow up period which was 3 to 8 months later were 60 to 100 percent. All of the participants were happy with the therapy.
An additional study published in 2103 titled Low-level laser therapy in skin: stimulating, healing, restoringconcludes:
Inflammatory diseases such as psoriasis and acne can also be managed. The noninvasive nature and almost complete absence of side effects encourage further testing in dermatology.
Although the research is relatively new regarding the use of red and infrared light therapies for psoriasis, each additional study suggests that the treatments are quite promising and offer hope of a drug-free option for sufferers of this chronic disease.
Study : Treated Patch Improved Continuously During Four Weeks Of Treatment
A small number of patients with mild or moderate plaque psoriasis were enrolled in this clinical trial. The goal was to find out whether blue light could safely and effectively treat psoriasis at home.
Heres what the study involved and what the patients saw after four weeks of treating the same patch of psoriasis every day with blue light.
|Number of patients|
|Here’s a summary of the results that all patients in this study obtained:
The researchers concluded that blue-light treatment is safe to use at home and can reduce psoriasis for some patients.
Also Check: How To Stop A Psoriasis Flare Up
Increasing Collagen & Fibroblasts
An extensive study was determined to identify red light therapys effectiveness for various concerns. The results indicated that red light particles boost the secretion of essential proteins that make up the skin tissue .
Increased collagen and fibroblasts promote quick skin rejuvenation and promote a smoother healthier appearance. These properties are vital for psoriasis patients as red patches often leave a bumpy texture for some time after flare-ups heal.
Red Light Therapy For Psoriasis
Also known as low-level laser therapy , red light therapy exposes your skin to red LED and/or NIR wavelengths that penetrate to the cells below. The mitochondria absorb the red light and heighten cellular energy. This stimulates collagen and elastin production, promotes healing, and boosts your skins firmness and elasticity. Improved skin health and texture are the keys to psoriasis relief.
Immune response within your skin is elevated. Red light reduces inflammation, provides better oxygen flow to cells, kills bacteria, and improves skin hydration and overall cell function. These effects work together to jump-start and enhance your bodys natural ability to heal itself. The resulting relief from debilitating psoriasis side effects allows you to get back to living a normal life, free of emotional and physical discomfort.
Red LED and NIR light promote natural healing without the damaging and dangerous side effects of UV phototherapy. More studies are in progress, but research already shows that red light therapy shows great promise for treating psoriasis due to its strong cellular penetration and the resulting increase in cellular energy.
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Who Should Undergo Red Light Treatment And Who Shouldnt
In a situation that lotions and creams are powerless against the symptoms of psoriasis, a dermatologist a skin specialist, may suggest light therapy.
. The condition impacts three to ten percent of the body in mild psoriasis, whereas serious psoriasis impacts more than 10% of the body.
Those that use medications and supplements over the-counter that make their skin more susceptible to Ultraviolet radiation must not receive photo therapy. These drugs are: sulfa drugs, antihistamines, diuretics and contraceptives
Speak to a practitioner before deciding on photo therapy about any present medications or medicines.
Pregnant females shouldnt undergo light treatment for psoriasis, same with individuals
How Is Puva Treatment Administered
Like UVB treatment, PUVA is administered in hospital phototherapy or physiotherapy units. As with UVB phototherapy, there are different methods for deciding on a starting dose of UVA and how to increase the dose to a therapeutically effective level. Some centres measure the sensitivity of the individuals skin to PUVA by applying test doses to small areas of skin, in a similar way to the MED test described previously. Because PUVA involves sensitising the skin before UV exposure, the sensitivity testis called the minimal photosensitivity dose test. Other centres may use phototype-based treatment schedules or a table of doses.
Treatment times for bath PUVA are shorter than for tablet PUVA and may range from less than a minute up to 5-8 minutes, depending on the output of the PUVA cabin and the dose scheme used. Tablet PUVA times may extend to15 minutes or more. If any session produces a sunburn reaction, or if any other symptoms are reported, the subsequent doses may be altered.
Bath PUVA phototherapy is usually given twice a week or three times every fortnight, whereas tablet PUVA is usually given twice a week for 15-25 treatment sessions or until the psoriasis has cleared to an acceptable amount.
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Reduced Inflammation From Eczema And Psoriasis With Red Light Therapy
Almost every study on red light and eczema or psoriasis has documented a reduction in inflammation levels. This inflammation reduction reduces itching and pain, and also helps speed the healing process and prevent chronic symptoms. Red lights natural anti-inflammatory effects have been widely documented across hundreds of peer-reviewed clinical trials, and red light therapy is indicated by the FDA for treating pain and strain.
Research Shows Promise For Red Light As A Psoriasis Treatment
A 2010 study treated patients with chronic psoriasis, which in most cases had proved resistant to conventional treatments. Researchers treated patients for a 4-5 week period, with follow-ups, and found significant improvements in psoriasis symptoms. Red light therapy improved psoriasis symptoms:Psoriasis Cleared: Patients had a 60% to 100% clearance rate with recalcitrant psoriasis.Reduced Inflammation: Red light therapy reduced the skin inflammation of psoriasis patients.Patient Satisfaction: Researchers concluded that satisfaction was universally very high among the psoriasis patients treated with red light. Another double-blind, randomized study assessed 20 patients with psoriasis. By monitoring two psoriatic plaques on each patient, one treated and one untreated, researchers were able to determine that red light therapy improved psoriasis by reducing redness, hardening, and scaling of the skin.
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How Does Phototherapy Work
The exact cause of psoriasis is not fully understood and the effects of UV on the skin are complicated, so a precise explanation of how phototherapy works is not possible. PUVA and UVB phototherapy may also work in slightly different ways. However, a simplified description of the mechanisms of phototherapy will help to explain some of its side effects and restrictions.
Taking a simplified model of psoriasis as an example, the too-sensitive skin immune system causes localised patches of inflammation and the overproduction of skin cells, in turn causing the visible plaques. Phototherapy stops the overproduction of skin cells by either damaging their DNA or by preventing the cells from dividing by locking the DNA . It also suppresses the skin immune system to stop the psoriasis process. The twin processes of interfering with DNA and suppressing the immune system in the skin can also cause skin cancer, so phototherapy can increase cancer risk. Therefore, to safely benefit from UV phototherapy it is best administered under professional medical supervision.
During treatment, goggles must be worn to protect the eyes and most people also wear a clear UV-blocking visor to protect the skin of the face . Men must wear genital protection.
How Red Light Therapy Helps Psoriasis
- Red light stimulates the production of new capillaries, which increases the delivery of nutrients and oxygen to the skin.
- Red light stimulates the lymphatic system, which makes waste removal more efficient and results in healthier skin that is less prone to psoriasis flares.
- Psoriasis and other autoimmune disorders interfere with collagen production. Collagen is a protein that gives skin a firm, supple, and full appearance. Red light stimulates collagen production which can help soothe the skin and reduce flares.
- Most notably, red light stimulates the production of adenosine triphosphate from the cells mitochondria. This is the cells energy source. A cell that has more energy has more capabilities to perform its normal functions, as well as regeneration and self-healing. Researchers found that ATP reduces inflammation that can lead to the main symptom of psoriasis: abnormally rapid replication of skin cells.
Psoriasis causes cells to replicate at 10x the normal rate, which outpaces the bodys ability to shed them this results in those unsightly red, scaly, painful and itchy areas.
Since light therapy helps to restore normal cell function, this means that the rate of growth will normalize and youll experience fewer and less intense flares.
All types of phototherapy require several treatments per week for several months , plus ongoing maintenance treatments.
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Insurance Issues With Light Therapy
The National Psoriasis Foundation has reported that patients have had difficulty getting insurance coverage for light therapy. Lack of insurance coverage, or cost, was one of the top three reasons patients discontinued phototherapy.
Thats not surprising given the typical pattern of phototherapy insurance coverage, says Lawrence Green, MD, associate professor of dermatology at the George Washington University School of Medicine in Washington, DC. Phototherapy in general costs between $60-90 a treatment and you need to go at least twice a week for a few months minimum to achieve clearance of psoriasis, says Dr. Green. This quickly gets quite expensive. Even if you have insurance, there are often copays of up to $50 per visit in many plans. And these copays seem to be going up every year!
Because of the costs and the time commitment involved, undertaking light therapy is a decision that requires a lot of thought. To help you determine whether this therapy makes sense for you, talk over the possible advantages with your medical team.
It is important to keep multiple therapies in the therapeutic armamentarium as different people respond variably to different treatments, says Miller.
Red Light Therapy For Treating Eczema And Psoriasis Symptoms
Eczema and psoriasis are some of the most common skin conditions, with over 30 million Americans suffering from eczema, and 8 million with some form of psoriasis. Unfortunately, treating eczema and psoriasis isnt well understood and current solutions arent very effective.
But in more promising news for people who struggle with these skin conditions, recent clinical results are showing that natural can reduce itchiness & redness, improve the appearance of skin rashes & flaking, and decrease inflammation.
This post looks at the positive clinical data that shows how red light therapy can be an effective, non-invasive treatment for eczema and psoriasis, without the risks or side effects of common prescription drugs.
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There Is An Abundance Of Literature Outlining The Benefits Offered By The 660nm Wavelength Penetrating Just A Little Deeper Than The 630nm Wavelength The 660nm Reaches Into The Entire Range Of The Skin Tissue To Promote Healing And Regeneration
Some of its diverse benefits include:
Reduced training fatigue in the muscles, and enhance skeletal muscle performance.
Improved bone healing, encourages resorption and formation in the bone cells around the location where repair is needed, without causing any change to the bone structure.
Reduced swelling following injury
Reduced neuropathic pain
Accelerated wound has been proven to increase the formation of new blood vessels and enhance collagen deposition to help in the healing of wounds.
The 810nm Wavelength
With an ability to extend through the skull into the brain, the 810nm wavelength offers a unique array of neurological benefits. Many forward-thinking scientists are of the belief that light therapy for brain disorders will become a prominent medical treatment in the near future. Expect to reap the following benefits from the 810nm wavelength:
Accelerated wound healing helping the tissue to granulate more rapidly.
Improved recovery from stroke in certain patients
Improved recovery from traumatic brain injury reducing long-term neurological damage.
Improvement in psychiatric disorders