Most people have at least heard of the term acne, and many have unfortunately had to suffer with it (most likely as a teenager). But fewer people know how the condition is caused or what kinds of effective treatments there are. The various causes of acne range from hormonal fluctuations, to bacteria, to an excess of oil production – all of which mean a comprehensive approach is needed to treat it effectively. Whilst yes, there are many different conventional treatments available such as topical creams and oral medications, many people are seeking better alternatives that don’t require daily reminders to take medication and apply a number of different creams. 

This is where red light therapy comes in! In the age of skincare and wellness obsession, red light therapy has really started to gain recognition, not just for its efficacy but also for being a natural, non-invasive solution to various skin concerns. When it comes to acne, red light therapy offers a promising alternative to conventional treatments, working in harmony with the body’s own biological processes to alleviate symptoms and target the root cause.

But how does it do it?

Well, in this article, we’re going to delve into how red light therapy can provide a beacon of hope for those struggling with acne. We will discuss what red light therapy is, how it specifically aids in combating acne, the scientific evidence supporting its effectiveness, and how you can experience this revolutionary treatment at our clinic.

Woman performing skincare

Understanding Acne & Traditional Treatments

Before we get into just how red light therapy helps to treat acne, we need to first lay out just what acne is and how it affects the body to cause its trademark spots and scarring. 

Firstly, acne is categorised as a skin condition that occurs when your hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells. It often causes whiteheads, blackheads, or spots and it is most common to appear on the face, forehead, chest, upper back, and shoulders. 

In each individual case it can be tricky to identify the exact cause, namely because there are so many different causes of acne. The most common of these is hormonal changes in the body that trigger the condition, part of the reason why it is often associated with teenagers going through puberty. Other common triggers for acne are that a person’s hair follicles become clogged by oil and dead skin cells or they are exposed to certain bacterias which cause acne.

Traditional treatments for acne are the familiar over-the-counter creams and cleansers, as well as, prescription topical creams, oral medication, and even hormonal therapies. While these can be effective, they all too often come with their own array of not so nice side effects such as; dry skin, irritation, and in some cases, more severe implications like an increased risk of depression.

A Brief Outline Of Red Light Therapy

We won’t go into too much detail here, as we have in fact covered red light therapy in much more detail both on our Photobiomodulation (PBM) page, as well as in this recent article on its benefits. But for the sake of this article, let’s briefly explain what red light therapy is and a little of how it works.

Red light therapy, also known as photobiomodulation or low-level laser therapy, is a less conventional but often more effective treatment for acne that uses low-level red light wavelengths to stimulate a response from the body’s cells. The therapy is known to penetrate the skin’s surface, reaching into tissues, muscles, and even bones. For acne in particular, it’s the effects of PBM on the mitochondria in your cells. When they absorb the light energy they are prompted to produce more adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is essentially the energy that fuels cell function. With more ATP, skin cells especially can function more efficiently and rejuvenate themselves more effectively.

What Does Red Light Therapy Do For Acne?

Because acne often has complex causes and wide ranging symptoms, it requires a multi-faceted approach to treatment. A treatment for acne that will be effective has to address not just the external symptoms – the inflammation, the blocked pores, and the visible pimples – but also the underlying issues at the cellular level. This is where red light therapy stands out, because it has the ability to treat acne at skin level and below. This allows red light therapy to target several key factors that contribute to acne, providing relief, and fostering healthier skin.

Red Light Therapy Reduces The Inflammation Which Causes Acne

Inflammation plays a crucial role in the development of acne. It often manifests as red, painful bumps that are characteristic of this common skin condition. Various factors can spur this inflammation – it could be a response to bacterial presence on the skin, a reaction to an irritant, or even a consequence of hormonal changes. Regardless of its origin, inflammation remains a key target in effective acne treatment. This is where red light therapy steps in with its potential to alleviate inflammation. The light which a PBM device releases can penetrate the skin’s surface and reach the inflamed cells below, assisting in quelling their inflammatory response and stop the reaction causing acne in its tracks.

Red Light Therapy Increases Collagen Production To Keep Skin Healthier

Collagen is one of the common natural proteins in the body and plays a vital role in keeping skin strong and making sure it retains a good level of elasticity. When a person is suffering from acne, the areas affected will begin to lose a lot of their collagen and this is what can then lead to the unpleasant and self-esteem shattering scarring to the affected areas. However, red light therapy actually stimulates the production of collagen in our bodies, meaning that the scarred areas can be exposed to red and near-infrared light in order to begin repairing some of the damage which has been done by the acne itself.

Woman looking at her face in the mirror

Red Light Therapy Promotes A Healthier Cell Turnover

The cycle of cell renewal is a crucial biological process that sees old, tired skin cells being replaced by new, vibrant ones. This, along with sustaining good levels of collagen production, is what keeps the skin looking fresh, youthful and radiant. However, in the case of individuals battling acne, this cell renewal process can be hampered, often becoming sluggish or erratic as spots and blackheads consume different parts of the affected skin at once. But, red light therapy can actually invigorate the skin cells and encourage a steady and healthy cell renewal cycle. Consequently, this helps to prevent pore blockages, thereby contributing to the control of the acne and relieving symptoms relatively quickly.

Wave Acne Goodbye With NovoTHOR® Red Light Therapy At Active Care Chiropractic

At Active Care Chiropractic, we believe in being friendly, insightful and welcoming local health and wellness experts. From the moment you step into our clinic, we strive to make your experience as comfortable and beneficial as possible.

Our NovoTHOR® red light therapy sessions last around 30 minutes, and our team will make sure to explain to you how the machine works and what exactly you should expect. You will then receive between 12 to 20 minutes inside our state-of-the-art NovoTHOR® machine, depending on various factors that decipher how long will be best for you.

As you embark on your journey to clearer skin, remember that red light therapy is not a quick fix. Just like any therapy or treatment, consistency is key, and results may take time. It’s a step towards embracing healthier skin practices and leveraging advanced, scientifically backed techniques for long-term benefits. Red light therapy provides this safe and side-effect free approach to helping deal with acne. 
To book a NovoTHOR® appointment at Active Care Chiropractic, simply get in touch where a member of the team will be happy to guide you through our booking process.