During a few, rare moments of down time the other day I came across the phrase, Red Light TherapyÃ‚Â as I was reading an article. I hate to say this but the first thing that came to mind was that this was a new way to say Ã¢â‚¬Å“Her husband visited a hooker.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Apparently this is not the truth.
There are people who use a red light to help with a variety of health, emotional, and mental issues. Red light therapy is a treatment that was discovered by NASA and is characterized by the use of infrared light on the body to provide therapeutic benefits for various health issues such as:
- Fine lines
- Sun damage
- Arthritis pain
- Joint pain
- Muscle pain
- High blood pressure
- Promotes rapid healing of injuries
- Nerve damage
- Increases blood circulation
- Reduces inflammation
- Activates endorphins
These are only some of the things on a very long list of benefits attributed to the power of the red light.
While the salons that are selling it at $100.00 a treatment tout the miraculous cures of the therapy, some experts disagree. My question is whether or not this is one more thing in a long series of claims that certain things like acai have amazing healing powers that rival those of God Himself.
Chromatherapy is the technical term for light therapy. Some of it is known to be helpful. For example, full spectrum lighting diminishes the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder, allowing people affected by this syndrome to live depression free all year.
In Far Eastern philosophy, the various colors in the spectrum are associated with different parts of the spirit, body, and emotions, and can relieve symptoms and even heal weaknesses in those areas.
However, sitting under a red light at the local spa may actually be harmful in some cases. Light therapy can alter the mood and can trigger a manic state in some people. There were no medical or governmental studies that I could find that suggested that red light therapy was a viable treatment for health problems.
You wonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t find red light therapy treatments at your doctorÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s office or local hospital. The treatments are generally found at tanning spas, salons, and other businesses that are associated with the need for society to look like movie stars.
It is true that the red light technology was developed by NASA and it was found that cancer patients undergoing bone marrow or stem cell transplants had a 96 percent chance of improvement of pain from mucositis, a common and very painful side effect of chemotherapy when they were given High Emissivity Aluminiferous Luminescent Substrate, HEALS for short.
The device is known as the WARP75 and is currently waiting for FDA approval. However, the WARP75 is not the same thing that the local salons are using in their red light therapy, and thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s what raises questions in my mind.
Ultimately, if you have the money and donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have mental health issues, then it is probably not going to hurt you to try it and see if it works. Be honest with yourself about the results, though. Is it really helping or are you just wanting it to be the answer?
You are the only one who knows.
Have you tried red light therapy?
photo credit: Ã‚Â Hendricks Photos