How Does Red Light Therapy Helps Hair Growth?
Hair loss is often dismissed, both by society in general and by the medical community in particular, as a simple fact of life and inevitable byproduct of aging. While this is true to an extent, this pervasive sentiment ignores the fact that the psychological repercussions of hair loss can be devastating.People with hair experience good hair days and bad ones, which can play a huge factor in their overall mood and confidence that day.
More than 35 million men and 21 million women in the United States suffer from excessive hair loss.By the age of 35, two-thirds of men experience some form of hair loss. Around 40% of women experience hair loss as well. If you're one of them, you know better than anyone else how difficult it can be to slow down your hair from thinning.Some people will resort to shaving their heads or wearing a wig, others will take a more drastic approach and undergo hair transplant surgery to regain their luscious locks.While they can take any of these approaches, none of them deal with the core issues around hair growth.
The hair growth cycle occurs in three phases. During the anagen phase,the hair begins to grow from the root of the follicle and out the surface of the skin,this phase lasts three to seven years. The catagen, or transitional phase, lasts two to four months, during which hair growth slows and the hair follicle shrinks. The telogen, or resting phase, occurs when the hair falls out and the hair follicle begins to produce a new hair. This phase lasts between three and four months.
The most important cells of the hair reside in the papilla. These cells send signals to the epithelial stem cells located in the bulge. These stem cells produce progenitor cells, which are a type of cell that can differentiate to form various specialized cells. In this case they differentiate to form amplifying cells that penetrate deep into the dermis. They then further differentiate to form matrix cells, which produce the hair.
What are the common causes of hair loss？
1.Androgenic hair loss: this is the most common type of hair loss, also known as male/female pattern baldness.
2.Alopecia Areata: an autoimmune disease that results in hair loss.
3.Traction alopecia: caused by over-styling and hair-pulling.
4.Involutional alopecia: gradual thinning of hair due to age.
5.Telogen effluvium: abnormal amounts of hair suddenly enter the shedding phase. This is caused by a stressful event such as drastic weight loss, trauma, etc. It grows back once stress levels return to normal.
How to Treat Hair Loss at Home？
Minoxidil (Rogaine®): Minoxidil can help early hair loss; it cannot regrow an entire head of hair.To use minoxidil, you apply it to the scalp as directed, usually once or twice a day.When used as directed, minoxidil can Stimulate hair growth,Prevent further hair loss.
Minoxidil tends to be more effective when used along with another treatment for hair loss. Many people see some regrowth when using minoxidil, but it takes time to see results, usually about 6 to 12 months.
If you stop applying minoxidil, you lose its benefits. Because minoxidil helps you maintain your hair's thickness, some hairs may look and feel thinner. You'll also gradually notice that you're shedding more hair.
Finasteride (Propecia®): The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved this medication to treat male pattern hair loss. When taken as directed, finasteride can Slow down hair loss,Stimulate new hair growth.
Finasteride is a pill that you take once a day. Taking it at the same time each day seems to produce the best results.Like other treatments for hair loss, this, too, takes time to work. It usually takes about 4 months to notice any improvement.
Finasteride tends to be more effective if you begin taking it when you first notice hair loss. A dermatologist may also prescribe this medication to treat a woman who has hereditary hair loss and cannot get pregnant.If finasteride works for you, you will need to keep taking it to continue getting results. Once you stop, you'll start losing hair again. Before taking this medication, be sure to discuss possible side effects with your dermatologist.
Microneedling: A microneedling device contains hundreds of tiny needles. it can help stimulate hair growth. After 12 weeks of treatment, the patients treated with minoxidil and microneedling had significantly more hair growth.Using microneedling along with another treatment, including platelet-rich plasma or a corticosteroid that you apply to the thinning area, helps improve hair growth.While you can buy a microneedling device without a prescription, it's best to check with your dermatologist first. Microneedling can worsen some conditions. It's also important to get the right microneedling device.
Laser for at-home use: You can buy laser caps and combs to treat hair loss at home. In one study, more than 200 men and women who had hereditary hair loss were given either a laser hair comb or a sham device that looked like a laser comb. The patients used the device that they were given 3 times per week for 26 weeks.
The researchers found that some patients using the laser rather than the sham device saw overall thicker and fuller hair.It’s important to understand that not everyone who used a laser saw regrowth.More studies are needed to find out who is most likely to benefit from this treatment and whether these devices cause long-term side effects.
Red Light Therapy:Given the side effects, cost, limited success, and ongoing hassles of these common hair restoration treatments, it makes sense to look at an alternative that is painless, non-invasive, has no side effects, and can actually enhance your health in a variety of different ways at the same time. Red light therapy is that option. Also red light therapy can help improve various other conditions, including joint pain from arthritis, sun damage, and nerve damage, to name a few.
How Red Light Therapy Restores Hair Growth？
Red light is especially effective at treating hair loss; specifically, light in the 620nm (nanometer) to 660nm wavelengths work best. It works by increasing blood flow in the scalp; this stimulates the metabolism in hair follicles, resulting in more hair production.
You lose hair during hair loss but not the follicles–the tube-like formations that anchor hair to the skin. At the base of each follicle is the hair bulb (the whole thing looks somewhat like a tall vase). At the bulbous part of the vase are the papilla and the matrix; this is where hair begins to grow. We see as “hair” mostly a protein called keratin that makes up the hair shaft. When the hair follicles and the papilla and matrix cells are not functioning properly, they cannot support hair growth,, causing it to slow or cease altogether.
Red light penetrates the skin to the base of the hair follicles, stimulating the cells, papilla,, and matrix to produce more energy, which results in these cells replicating more successfully. This replication leads to new hair growth from these previously-dormant follicles. Red light also:
Stimulates Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) production, a coenzyme responsible for fueling cellular structures. Increases in ATP cause individual cells within the hair follicle to increase their activity, including the rate at which they replicate. Restoring the energy of the hair follicles' cellular structures means the papilla creates more keratin, which results in hair growth.
Increases collagen production. Hair is primarily made up of a protein called keratin. While collagen — another type of protein — isn’t present in hair, it acts as an antioxidant to fight damage caused by free radicals (compounds that develop in the body during stress, environmental pollutants, poor nutrition, etc.). Free radicals damage hair follicles, which contributes to their inability to grow hair. Increased collagen means less oxidative damage, which can lead to increased hair growth.
Increases the creation of new capillaries, which improves blood flow to the scalp and brings oxygen and nutrients to hair follicles,, and removes waste that can lead to hair follicle damage. One study linked improved blood flow to the growth of thicker, healthier hair. Barbers have long encouraged men to massage their scalps to increase blood flow, but increasing blood flow using red light is generally more effective.
What are the advantages of using red light therapy for hair growth?
1.Light therapy is pain-free and doesn't leave you with nasty side-effects like many hair growth medications. Red light therapy device deliver concentrated red and near-infrared wavelengths to your skin without using harmful chemicals, excess heat, or UV rays to enhance cellular function.
2.The mitochondria of cells are light-sensitive. Like how plant leaves convert sunlight into energy, our mitochondria are stimulated by certain light to produce more ATP. Every cellular function requires ATP. With more ATP, the cells become faster at growth and renewal.
Studies conducted on male and female participants observed significant improvements in hair strength and thickness as a result of low-level laser therapy.
3.Red light therapy is completely safe to use daily as long as you're not on certain medications. It's well tolerated because the processes involved in red light therapy are completely natural.
How Long Does Red Light Therapy For Hair Growth Take to Work?
Red light therapy for hair growth is time-consuming. for the best results, it is suggested that you commit to 1-2 sessions between 10 and 20 minutes per day or at least 3 to 4 times per week for 3 to 4 months.
While this will vary from person to person, you can usually start to see an improvement within the 3 to 4-month time frame.Don't be put off by this.As with anything, there are always a few cons in the mix of pros.But, If you have the time and cash to dedicate to red light therapy, you will not regret it.