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Light Therapy for Acne: How and Why


Light Therapy for Acne: How and Why

Light Therapy for Acne: How and Why

Unfortunately, acne is a skin disease that doesn’t just affect teenagers. Even in your 20s, 30s, or even 40s, you can find yourself struggling with these parts. If you have acne-prone skin, you probably know every remedy on the market, from salicylic acid to anti-inflammatory sulfur. However, these aren’t the only products that can help you get rid of acne. Have you heard of light therapy?

Photo by Matt Moloney on Unsplash

Light Therapy 101

As you probably know from the name itself, this treatment uses light to heal your skin and help you avoid future breakouts. The idea behind the therapy is that certain artificial light affects the skin at the cellular level. Light is a type of energy with different wavelengths. We treat these wavelengths as distinct colors. Different wavelengths cause intracellular reactions that lead to many skin benefits.

blue light therapy

It turns out that blue is the most effective for acne. Not only does blue light have antibacterial properties, it also regulates sebum production and reduces inflammation. But let’s take a few steps back. Bacteria that cause acne produce porphyrin proteins. When you expose your skin to blue light, this protein absorbs it, causing a chemical reaction that kills bacteria.

As mentioned, blue light also controls the production of sebum, and if you’ve been battling acne, you probably know that sebum is responsible for clogged pores. When sebum levels rise, pimples begin to appear. One of the most annoying parts of the vicious acne cycle is inflammation and redness. Blue acne light therapy can also help with these problems.

So why does this matter? If you realize that your skin is sensitive and doesn’t respond well to all these anti-acne products, light therapy may be just what your doctor prescribed. These LED treatments are an excellent alternative to standard treatments, although they work best when used together.

When light therapy isn’t a good idea?

It’s important to remember that light therapy doesn’t work for all acne breakouts. This therapy shows its full potential when inflammatory acne lesions appear. If your skin is covered with red, soft pustules, blue light therapy can help with this.

In addition to blue light therapy, there is also red light therapy. That one is most commonly used to address acne scars as it promotes the skin’s healing process. With red light therapy, you can also speed up the regeneration of collagen and elastin. On the other hand, yellow and green lights are helpful for discolored acne scars.

using light therapy

The good news is that you can practice light therapy yourself at home. However, it is recommended that you consult your dermatologist beforehand. Having said that, you can try masks or light pencils that are more suitable for spot treatment. Remember, you won’t see results unless you repeat the process over and over. It is important to follow strict instructions for best results.

If you are not sure if you know how to use this treatment properly, opt for in-office treatment. Professional treatment also requires repetition. For example, if you choose blue light therapy, you will need to spend some time in the light up to 3 times a week for 4 to 6 weeks.

possible side effects

Another benefit of light therapy is that there are few side effects. For example, people with certain rare eye diseases may be sensitive to certain wavelengths. This is why it is important to wear proper eye protection during these treatments. After treatment, you may experience dry skin, changes in skin tone, tingling or itching, and irritation. However, these will quickly disappear on their own.

Photo by Scott Butcher on Unsplash

Light therapy is an effective acne treatment for most skin types. It’s generally safe with a few exceptions, which is why it’s important to discuss it with your dermatologist. While in-office treatments by a professional dermatologist are your best bet, at-home masks or pens can also help you achieve clear, healthy skin.

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