Brain Health and Red Light Therapy
No one wants to have a sluggish and unhealthy brain, right? This, I believe, is what we all desire. Am I correct? Most of you, I believe, will concur. We all know about red light therapy by now, which helps correct a lot of issues we encounter every day, like insomnia, skin issues, getting rid of extra fat, and eye health. Next, we’ll investigate how red light can enhance brain function.
What is Red Light Therapy :
Red light therapy or photobiomodulation is a new benign therapy. It helps reduce inflammation, muscle pain, and increases the level of testosterone. Here we will discuss how it helps to improve brain health.
Red light therapy involves sitting still while the waves penetrate the dermal layer of the skin and for using it to penetrate it in the skull bones we require a high out-put LED to get a better result. Normally, red, blue, or infrared light is used.
Why is proper brain functioning important?
The brain is an important organ in the human body. It is the central processing area where all the information is gathered and is interpreted in the form of signals and then sent to all parts of the body for the performance of particular functions. The human brain weighs about 3 pounds. These 3 pounds decide our future critical thinking, learning and ability to react. Therefore, maintaining good mental health is very important and is equally required as taking care of our physical health.
Many different techniques have been used for maintaining proper brain health, like taking a balanced diet, going for a walk, and engaging yourself in activities that require at least some mental effort. There are a few activities, like solving puzzles or learning, that require at least a bit of cognitive ability.
How does red light therapy work for brain functioning?
Red light, if properly used, can do wonders for your mental health. From maintaining a healthy brain to improving cognitive functioning, red light therapy is very beneficial.
The human brain is like machinery and it can face numerous drastic conditions during its work like some injuries or the need for regeneration of particular cells damaged during injuries. Some of them may be divided into three most basic categories:
- Traumatic errors: These errors may be due to sudden strokes or any kind of unexpected brain injury.
- Age-related disorders: Age-related disorders include the most common diseases, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Psychiatric and mood disorders like depression and anxiety.
Red Light Therapy to aid in healing processes:
Red light also aids in boosting the healing process by helping increase blood flow. Red light therapy or low laser therapy helps in the increase of capillaries. Hence, it increases blood flow. Due to the rise in blood flow, nutrients and oxygen enter the bloodstream, and healing is boosted.
Red Light for improved brain functioning:
When you expose yourself to red light then probably near-red and infra-red rays penetrate into your skull as already discussed that red light has the ability to aid in the healing and cell recovery process therefore, it can aid in boosting brain health by helping in the recovery of the damaged cells and tissues in the brain
- Red light therapy helps in thestimulation ofmitochondrialfunctioning. Light enters the cell and gets absorbed into the mitochondria, the energy centre of the cell. Photonic energy is converted into Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP). Atp gives energy to cells on the requirement.
- These energized cells help with faster replication and repair. Healthy cells then start a quicker healing process.
- Red light increases cerebral blood flow and oxygenation. This can help TBI patients heal from neurovascular dysfunction, which causes low brain oxygenation and slow healing.
- Red light promotes neuroprotection and therefore provides support for neurons. This safeguards their longevity and ensures that they remain viable and disease-free longer. This has the added benefit of reducing inflammation, which means that their cells can survive longer.
- Red light therapy aids in reducing and eliminating acute and chronic inflammation. Without inflammation, wounds don’t heal. Repair is faster when inflammation is lessened. So, it heals wounds rapidly.
- Stem cells help mechanisms of healing. The cells in the body are inactive. However, they pass through the bloodstream and take the place of those cells. They are necessary. If there is damage to any muscle or conjunctive tissue, collagen should group cells into one mesh network. Red light therapy increases the production of collagen needed to repair damaged muscles and connective tissue.
Red Light Therapy and decline in cognitive ability:
In a recent study, a survey was conducted on people aged 49 to 90 age groups. It was seen that when they were exposed to red light, then red light therapy proved to be beneficial regardless of their cognitive decline. As red light helped to increase the scores of cognitive ability in elderly people, increases in brain waves were also seen.
As we know, red light therapy helps in the stimulation of mitochondrial functioning, combating oxidative stress and fastens the healing process. This aids in faster regeneration and protection against injuries.
Brain waves are a measurement of the electrical activity generated by the brain.
- Alpha waves are associated with the brain’s ability to be present in the present moment.
- Attention, focus, and cognitive performance are all associated with beta waves.
- Gamma waves are associated with the processing of information (both external and internal to the body).
- Theta waves have been linked to daydreaming and creativity. Driving down a familiar road, lost in a daydream, most people suddenly realise they’ve driven for miles without really paying attention to the act of driving. Theta activity is critical for creative, non-linear thinking.
Brain Injuries and Red Light Therapy:
Traumatic brain injuries are very common in athletes. This injury has been thought to have no normal treatment. But studies have now revealed that red light therapy or photobiomodulation can be an effective and non-invasive treatment for traumatic brain injuries. These techniques use infra-red or near-infrared lights and can be a brilliant source of recovery, healing and regeneration of damaged cells.
Red Light Therapy and Depression:
Depression is a very common issue nowadays . You would be amazed to know that Red light therapy can help you fight this disaster and aid you live a happy life. This has been shown in studies. Sleep deprivation leads to insomnia, which results in chronic stress and depression. Researchers did the study with young basketball players who frequently experienced sleep issues. Using red light therapy after the experiment led to the finding that more melatonin secretion made for better and longer sleep.
How to use Red Light Therapy for Brain Health:
Red light therapy can be used for brain health to improve and heal injuries. Normally, the skull is exposed to red light and rays penetrate into the skull. Most of the time, red light normally penetrates 5-10mm deep.
Therefore, high quality led light should be used that can aid in better absorption into the skull bones. Otherwise, the rays will get absorbed into the outer dermal layers and will not penetrate into the deeper layers.
NIR (830nm) red light therapy has been shown to increase alpha, theta, and delta brainwave activity while decreasing beta. This is similar to deep meditation, which has been shown to improve cognitive function and slow or reverse age-related neurodegenerative disorders.
Avoid buying cheap LEDs as they will not only waste your time and money but also not be that beneficial for your brain’s health. The cheaper LED lights don’t penetrate deeper into bones and will get absorbed only into the dermal layers of skin.
Can we use Red Light Therapy at home?
Do you think it’s possible to have red light therapy at home? The answer is “yes” because it is quite simple to use at home.
To obtain better results, the highest quality LED light must be used for red light therapy done at home. Red light or near-infrared light in the 600-630 nm or 810 nm, 830 nm, or 850 nm wavelength can be used. It takes about 20 minutes of exposure multiple times per week.
Red Light Therapy is a very safe treatment for your brain health and improvement in cognitive ability. Therefore, the use of this therapy can aid your brain in the healing and recovery process. Don’t wait and get red light therapy for your brain.