An Invaluable Addition to Your Hair Restoration Practice
By Denise Ryan, VP Brand Management, BioPhotos, Inc.
Male pattern baldness, also known as androgenetic alopecia accounts for 95% of hair loss in men. Research shows that by age 35, more than two-thirds of American men suffer from hair loss and by age 50, 85% of men deal with thinning hair. Androgenetic alopecia is a common hair loss condition that is characterized by the miniaturization of hair follicles in the frontal and parietal regions of the scalp.
While many men have embraced the “bald is beautiful” mantra, there are others who suffer from male pattern baldness and are unhappy with how they look, particularly men who begin balding at a young age. Many are desperate for solutions and for some, it can impact interpersonal relationships as well as their professional opportunities. Light therapy complements currently existing treatments and procedures — trichophytic closure prescription drugs, PRP, stem cells, transplant surgery — to dramatically enhance an individual’s outcome for maximizing hair growth.
Hair loss is not a strictly male health concern. While suffering mostly in silence, women make up a significant percentage of those who suffer from hair loss. The American Academy of Dermatology, reports 40% of women have visible hair loss by the time they are age 40.
Today, patients with thinning hair are taking advantage of FDA-cleared red light therapy devices to restore and prevent further hair loss. Further advances in technology have seen the introduction of multifunctional, shape-taking devices FDA-cleared to treat pain and skin conditions in addition to preventing and restoring hair loss. Introducing your clients to brands that are additionally cleared for home-use allows them to complement your professional services and stay on protocol all in the comfort and privacy of their own home
What is LED Light Therapy
Light therapy, also known as phototherapy, photobiomodulation, or low-level light therapy, is the application of specific wavelengths of light energy to tissue to obtain therapeutic benefits for a wide variety of conditions.
The absorbed energy is utilized to improve cellular performance. Light therapy can be delivered through light-emitting diode devices or cold lasers and has a variety of applications across many medical fields. This clinically validated modality is gaining greater and greater acceptance in mainstream medicine by dermatologists and aesthetic medical professionals as a noninvasive therapeutic modality for the treatment of a variety of skin, pain, and scalp conditions.
Research has proven that LED devices are equal to and, in many instances, can outperform cold LASERs. According to light therapy researcher Michael Hamblin, “Advantages of LEDs include no laser safety considerations, ease of home use, ability to irradiate a large area of tissue at once, the possibility of wearable devices, and much lower cost per mW. LED photobiomodulation is here to stay”.
LED light therapy has been widely researched and is supported by thousands of peer-reviewed and published clinical research papers from prestigious institutions around the world. LED light therapy treatments are non-invasive, painless, require no recovery time, and can be used safely on all skin types. And now, hair restoration has been added to the long list of conditions that can benefit from LED light therapy.
Today LED light therapy devices have been cleared by the FDA for the treatment of male and female pattern hair loss. Applied to the scalp, it helps to proliferate hair follicle size and prevent catagen hair development (the end of the active growth of hair). Substantial research has supported light therapy’s ability to regrow hair loss due to androgenetic alopecia with minimal degrees of side effects and adverse events. LED devices can be an effective stand-alone therapy or adjunctive therapy to medication and topical prescriptions for optimal hair regrowth.
Science Supports Using LED Light Therapy for Hair Restoration
LED light therapy enhances hair growth by targeting and boosting the biochemical processes in the scalp and follicle. It is thought that through photobiomodulation, red light energy emitted by low-level light therapy devices may encourage hair growth by accelerating keratinocyte and fibroblast mitosis, inhibiting nitric oxide, and reducing inflammation.
Patients and clients can experience light therapy in a clinical setting, as well as purchase a suitable LED device to complete treatment in the convenience of their own homes. In one review article, “Efficacy of non-surgical treatments for androgenetic alopecia: a systematic review and network meta-analysis,” European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, A.K. Gupta, and others, state that, “Relative effects show LLLT as the superior treatment” when comparing light therapy to the six most common non-surgical treatment options for treating androgenetic alopecia in both men and women including dutasteride 0.5 mg, finasteride, 1 mg, minoxidil 2%, minoxidil 5% and platelet-rich plasma (PRP).