How Light Therapy Can Help Your Skin This Winter
Light therapy, also known as phototherapy, is probably one of those dermatological procedures you’ve certainly heard of but still are unsure whether or not you want to attempt. Light therapies, particularly in the winter, can be beneficial to your skin. Don’t believe us?
Here’s a look at various types of phototherapy and why wintertime is the best time to get it.
What Is Light Therapy and How Does it Work?
Light therapy is a sort of medical treatment that involves treating specific medical illnesses with fluorescent light bulbs or other sources of light such as halogen lights, sunlight, and light-emitting diodes (LEDs).
It has made huge developments in the skincare industry over the last few years.
From LED therapy to laser stretch mark removal, phototherapy offers a wide range of skincare applications. It has been used to improve skin texture and cure enlarged oil glands that cause acne.
Most importantly, phototherapy uses artificial light to treat Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and other disorders. SAD is a seasonal depression that strikes at a specific time of year, commonly in the fall or winter. It is believed that the light emitted during phototherapy helps the brain to produce more melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that is known to increase serotonin, the happy hormone. This makes light therapy the best treatment to seek out this winter.
Light therapy also helps to even out skin tone and contribute to a clearer complexion, but it may also help to reduce the frequency of acne flare-ups in some cases. It can even aid in the reduction of disorders like vitiligo since it balances out skin tone in areas where pigmentation has been lost.
Precautions to Take Before Getting Light Therapy Treatment
Like any skin procedure, it is crucial to confirm with your dermatologist if you are a suitable candidate for the therapy. Light therapy is not recommended for patients who have any of the following conditions:
- Taking blood thinners
- Have problems with skin resurfacing
- Have recently tanned or had a bad sunburn
- Have acne active on your body
- Are pregnant
- Are currently taking or have recently stopped taking Accutane
- Have keloids
Blue Light Therapy
The most common application of blue light therapy is as part of a treatment called photodynamic therapy. Actinic keratoses can be treated with this therapy. Actinic keratoses are precancerous patches on the skin. Severely damaged skin is another condition that can be treated with blue light therapy. Blue light can also be used to kill bacteria and clear blemishes on acne-prone skin and wrinkles.
Blue light therapy does not work for everyone, and determining whether or not your acne is sensitive to blue light may take several sessions. If this is the case, you may still require additional acne treatments, such as prescription lotions. However, for certain individuals, the procedure may pave the path to smoother skin.
Red Light Therapy
Red light therapy (RLT) is a treatment that may aid in the healing of the skin, muscle tissue, and other body parts. It exposes you to red or near-infrared light at modest intensities. Infrared light is a sort of energy that your eyes cannot see but your body perceives as heat. It is used to treat wrinkles, skin damage from the sun, rosacea, arthritis, acne scars, dental pain, and psoriasis.
Side Effects of Light Therapy
At the site of the treated area, some patients may develop a reaction comparable to sunburn or blistering, and in rare circumstances, an increase in pigmentation may occur. However, it has no influence on your overall health. Because results may vary, consult your doctor to determine the best course of action for you.
If you happen to be in Cincinnati, Ohio, our experts at The Dermatology Group can give you more insightful information. Book a consultation with us today to find out more about your skin’s health.