At the M-ethod™, we think that when nurtured in the optimal environment, the skin thrives naturally. Light-Emitting Diode (LED) phototherapy is a non-invasive treatment that uses clinically proven wavelengths to trigger the skin’s own rejuvenating and healing processes, and is used to treat a wide range of conditions.
While blue (415 nm) light mainly tackles acne by reducing the bacterial count, red (633 nm) light is great for skin rejuvenation, while reducing inflammation associated with psoriasis and lifestyle factors such as diet, stress and environmental pollution. For those with sensitive skin and rosacea, LED phototherapy is an ideal treatment without risking the skin barrier. Furthermore, it stimulates the body’s natural capability to produce collagen, which of course translates to improved skin texture, laxity, and tone!
LED phototherapy legitimately lives up to all of its promises, as it targets the skin on a cellular level, improving the energy function of the mitochondria (the skin cell powerhouse), as well as induces the release of growth factors.
Certain devices also feature wavelengths at near infra-red light (830 nm), which helps with wound healing, signs of photodamage and is also proven for pain relief. This makes it ideal for those who are recovering from invasive procedures or surgeries.
Skin type: suitable for all skin types.
Is it safe? What is the treatment downtime?
Sometimes you can look a little flushed immediately after treatment, but this calms down within a few hours. The LED lights are UV-free, so they are extremely safe; there have been no reported side effects in over 3000 published clinical studies. In fact, several labels have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration and have been medically CE certified. However, photosensitive medications and/or health conditions may be contraindicated, so it is important to discuss this with your physician.
How soon will I see results, and how many sessions are required?
This depends on the indication, severity and the patient’s overall health. Improvement can be seen in as few as 3 sessions. Generally, 8-12 sessions are recommended, and treatments taken in quick succession tend to achieve faster results.
I’m expecting, is LED for me?
Even though LED phototherapy is considered very safe, most devices have not been tested on pregnant people so the risk is unknown. LED phototherapy during pregnancy would be delivered under the discretion of the physician. It is safe for those who are breast-feeding.
Will LED therapy give me a tan/ stimulate vitamin D production?
No, as LED therapy does not involve UV radiation.
I am undergoing treatment for cancer. Am I ok to go for LED therapy?
LED phototherapy is not recommended for those actively undergoing medical treatment for cancer. Once the patient has been signed off by their oncologist, it is safe to proceed. During this undoubtedly difficult time, a soothing facial with specific skincare actives would be the best option for maintaining a healthy skin barrier.
Disclosure: this article is not intended to replace medical advice by your healthcare provider. If you have further queries, book in with the M-ethod™ for individualised guidance tailored to your needs.
Journal of Cosmetic Laser Therapy, 2009, Volume 11 Supplement 2, pages 125-128
Laser Therapy, 2005, Volume 14 Supplement 1, pages 26-36
Laser Therapy, 2008, Volume 17 Supplement 3, pages 141-148
Photodermatology, Photoimmunology and Photomedicine, 2014, Volume 30, pages 246–253