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Home arrow Beauty arrow Hair arrow Red Light Therapy for Hair Loss: Baldness Cure on the Horizon?

Red Light Therapy for Hair Loss: Baldness Cure on the Horizon?

HR_author_photo_Rosmy
Written by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Dr. Donika Vata
Fact checked by Donika Vata, MD
Last update: May 19, 2023
5 min read 845 Views 0 Comments
clock 5 eye 845 comments 0

Red light therapy is gaining popularity as a non-invasive treatment. But is it really a miracle cure for hair loss?

Red light therapy for hair loss

In today’s beauty industry, there are many ways to treat hair loss. New hacks pop up every week on how to grow long, healthy hair. But even though it’s been around for a while, red light therapy has become a popular treatment for hair growth. 

This non-invasive treatment has many benefits for your skin, so people have started using it to replenish their scalp. The light works to heal scarring and reduce inflammation, making it suitable for treating damaged hair follicles. 

Discover whether red light therapy works for hair loss and the possible side effects of trying this treatment.

Red Light Therapy for Hair Loss: Does It Help?

Yes, red light therapy is a natural treatment that can work for hair loss. The red light laser stimulates your scalp with concentrated wavelengths. Your body can use this natural light to create cellular energy and foster the healing process for healthy hair growth.

Red light therapy can help those with male or female pattern baldness because each hair follicle has time to heal. Those near-infrared wavelengths focus on fueling your body with the required energy to reduce inflammation. You may also notice minimal balding around your hairline.

Anyone can try this low-level laser therapy to grow their hair back. Since it doesn’t involve chemicals, excess heat, or UV radiation, your health won’t suffer from any long-term side effects. 

Before seeking red light treatment, consult with a hair professional. They can determine whether laser therapy is the best option for hair regrowth. 

What Is Red Light Therapy?

Red light therapy (RLT) is a safe treatment that uses a visible red light laser to improve your skin and reduce wrinkles, scars, and redness. People with cystic acne may use this low-level light therapy to eliminate inflammation and discoloration on their skin. 

This natural treatment can stimulate collagen production in the skin. Collagen is a protein your body produces to maintain skin cells, bones, cartilage, and connective tissue. It’s also believed that these structural proteins can support hair growth because they replenish your hair follicles. 

Other benefits of RLT include reduced inflammation and increased blood circulation to the muscle and connective tissue. If you suffer from female or male pattern baldness, you could achieve hair restoration by using red light treatment. More blood circulation to your scalp can help stimulate hair growth. 

You can also use RLT for problems such as:

  • Androgenic alopecia
  • Stretch marks 
  • Psoriasis, rosacea, and eczema
  • Face texture 
  • Persistent wounds 
  • Age spots and fine lines 
  • Cellulite

What Does Red Light Therapy for Hair Loss Look Like?

You can purchase a special red light therapy device to use on your scalp. Always hold it 6–12 inches away from the head to gain the benefits. For beginners, use the device for at least 2 minutes every day before building your daily exposure up to 10–15 minutes. 

Many people do this treatment at home because it’s safe and natural. All you need is an RLT device that uses a big enough light to cover your head. To promote hair growth, it’s worth trying this treatment every day for a few weeks. 

However, you can also go to a SPA that has a red light therapy panel. This option may be better for beginners who don’t know how to use the machine, but the price will be higher.

How often to use red light therapy for hair growth? 

Depending on your schedule, you can get the best results by doing 10–20-minute sessions 3–5 times a week. Some people like to follow this routine for at least three months to treat hair loss, but you should use it when it suits your personal needs. 

There is no correct way of using RLT, as it depends on your type of hair loss. For example, someone with female pattern baldness may do longer sessions throughout the week. 

Another routine could be to follow 8–10 treatments over three weeks. Then, follow up with a maintenance treatment every two months. However, if you want to speed up your progress, it’s worth doing more RLT. It would also be beneficial to combine this therapy with PRP procedures for maximum results.

For more guidance on treating hair loss with light therapy, speak to a medical professional about your recommended dose. 

Does Red Light Therapy for Hair Loss Work?

Yes, red light therapy does work for treating hair loss and thinning hair. The safe wavelengths can penetrate your scalp and encourage the body to start healing damaged hair follicles. Over time, you may notice small hair growth, even if the growth happens around your hairline. 

Research suggests that red light targets hemoglobin molecules in your red blood cells. This process releases nitric oxide, which is a natural compound that relaxes blood vessels and encourages more blood flow. 

More blood circulation in your scalp can ensure your hair follicles stay in the anagen phase – the stage at which your follicles produce a new hair shaft. Those with a longer growth cycle tend to have thicker and longer hair strands. 

Since RLT also reduces inflammation, it can stop your pores from getting clogged. A study found that certain scalp conditions, like seborrheic dermatitis and psoriasis, can promote hair loss. 

Even though light therapy is effective, you should try healthy lifestyle habits to make your hair grow faster. For example, avoid bleaching or heat styling tools to prevent thinning hair as you age. Some people also perform a daily scalp massage to encourage more blood circulation to their hair follicles. 

Possible Side Effects of Red Light Therapy

Red light therapy doesn’t have many side effects because it is natural and safe. However, someone who is new to this treatment may do it too much, leading to tissue and skin cell damage. 

Certain products online could also damage unprotected eyes due to misuse. It’s important to cover your eyes with protective goggles while using RLT. Consider speaking to a doctor before buying a red light therapy device. 

FAQs

How long to put a red light on your hair for growth?

You should commit to a 10-minute session every day for one week to see how it suits your schedule. Most people only do these treatments three to five times a week.

Can red light therapy make hair thicker?

Yes, red light therapy can make your hair thicker as it grows back. This is because your hair follicles are stronger and more capable of producing healthy hair. Research also shows that those with female pattern hair loss also notice an increased hair count and thickness.

Is it possible to do too much red light therapy?

Some people do go overboard with RLT. Doing too much can actually damage your cells and tissue, especially if you already have sensitive skin. Instead, stick to a 10-minute session daily or speak to a professional.

A Word From an MD

Dealing with hair loss can be frustrating, but there are many ways to treat it. You can use red light therapy treatments to stimulate blood circulation in your scalp and grow back healthier hair than before.

Even though RLT is a great option, it may not be for everyone. Certain treatments, like hair masks and scalp massages, can also reverse hair loss by protecting your scalp and encouraging it to heal. To build the perfect haircare routine, try nourishing oils containing coconut, rosemary, or argan.

Following a balanced diet could also help your body produce new hair. Foods rich in protein, collagen, and biotin are best for hair growth. Some options include eggs, chicken, berries, salmon, pork bone broth, and cheese.

If you want to try red light therapy or understand more about your hair, speak to a professional trichologist. They can evaluate your scalp in greater detail and suggest ways to prevent further hair loss.

Conclusion

Red light therapy can help those who suffer from hair loss. This popular treatment uses concentrated wavelengths to stimulate your body’s healing process. People with androgenetic alopecia may also benefit from using red light therapy treatment as it helps to stimulate hair growth.

Written by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Dr. Rosmy Barrios, MD, is a medical advisor for the Health Reporter, the head of the anti-aging department, and a regenerative medicine specialist in several medical institutions with years of experience in aesthetic medicine and cosmetology.
The article was fact checked by Donika Vata, MD
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HR_author_photo_Rosmy
Written by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Dr. Donika Vata
Fact checked by Donika Vata, MD
Last update: May 19, 2023
5 min read 845 Views 0 Comments
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