Are red light therapy beds worth the investment, or are there better options?
In this article, we explore the benefits and uses of red light therapy beds, as well as a versatile alternative.
Ultimately, the biggest issues we find with RLT beds are their inconvenience, expense of use, and lack of wavelength range, which can have implications for therapeutic limitations.
For more information, check out the BIOMAX Series, advanced red light therapy panels that are affordable, convenient, and can be used in the comfort of your own home.
How do Red Light Therapy Beds Work?
Red light therapy beds use light-emitting diodes (LEDs) calibrated to emit specific wavelengths of red and near-infrared light to treat a variety of conditions.
Most often, these devices feature red wavelengths between 630 and 850 nm, so their wavelength range is limited.
Are Red Light Therapy Beds Safe?
Generally, red light therapy beds are considered safe and free of side effects. During use, we would recommend wearing light-blocking goggles to prevent eye strain.
It may be best to avoid using a red light therapy bed for those with or in any of the following conditions:
- A seizure disorder such as epilepsy
- Very low blood pressure
- Taking photosensitizing medications
If you’re in doubt, consult with your doctor before undergoing red light therapy.
Red light and NIR light wavelengths are part of the natural spectrum of light, but red light therapy beds do not contain any UV light. Therefore, RLT beds are not tanning devices.
Red Light Therapy Beds
You may be able to find treatment at gyms or wellness centers. But, it’s quite expensive to buy an LED light bed. We still stand behind the convenience and efficacy of RLT panels, which similarly can offer full body treatment.
Here are a few notes to consider if you’re in the market for one.
You’ll get the best results by choosing a red light therapy bed that delivers multiple red and/or NIR wavelengths. However, the Prism Light Pod, intended for professional use, delivers fewer wavelengths.
Size and Price of RLT Beds
Another challenge with LED therapy beds is their size. You can’t conveniently stash them away when they’re not in use. By contrast, even the largest LED therapy panel can be put in a closet or under the bed to free up space.
Finally, get ready for sticker shock as an LED therapy bed can set you back between $6,000 and $75,000.
Let’s look into the benefits of RLT panels in greater detail.
Red Light Therapy Panels vs. Red Light Therapy Beds
In this section, we take a closer look at how red light therapy treatment can contribute to better health outcomes.
Wavelengths can stimulate the body's natural healing processes. Most notably, R+ and NIR+ light therapy can increase energy production within cells. In many cases, this has a positive ripple effect on the body.
Each cell has tiny organelles called mitochondria. Reversing mitochondrial dysfunction is a step towards improving wellness. As individual cells become energized, they begin to function better. In essence, red light beds can offer improved well-being at the cellular level.
Red light therapy beds can be used to improve your cardiovascular health.
Increased Collagen Production
Collagen is important for healthy skin, but also for your muscles, joints, and connective tissues. Red light therapy is well-studied and is known for its ability to boost collagen production. It is a popular treatment for anti-aging, reversing sun damage, wound healing, and scar reduction.
Inflammation is a major cause of chronic disease and slow healing. Red light therapy can reduce inflammation to support healing. Benefits of reducing inflammation include relief from chronic inflammatory skin disorders, including mild to moderate acne and psoriasis.
What can you treat using red light therapy panels? The device has many applications:
- Chronic skin disorders including acne, rosacea, eczema, or psoriasis
- Chronic inflammation
- Weight loss
- Hair regrowth
- Minor pain relief (low back pain, osteoarthritis joint pain, or muscle pain)
- Better sleep
- Overall health (due to reduced inflammation and increased mitochondrial energy production)
- Other treatments are being discovered daily as the body of research into red light therapy grows!
When you follow a consistent treatment schedule, you can expect many results within a few weeks of treatment as you support the natural process of healing. Most health benefits come over time as you make red light therapy part of your wellness plan.
In essence, a light bed offers the same health benefits you can get with a high-quality LED therapy panel. The true difference is in the specific wavelengths that are used and in the convenience and affordability.
The Most Therapeutic Wavelengths
Hundreds of studies confirm the use of a combination of wavelengths. Many LED therapy beds only offer one wavelength at a time, whereas results can be signficantly better when combining red and NIR wavelengths. Blue wavelengths also add to the treatment benefits. Here’s why:
Blue wavelengths are known for killing bacteria on the skin, whether it’s acne-causing bacteria or bacteria that could slow the healing of a wound. Blue light also reduces redness and inflammation.
Here is some more infomation about the wavelengths in particular, and how they offer complimentary and different treatment:
Red wavelengths between 630 and 660 nm are a popular natural treatment used for skin care. They can accelerate skin wound healing, treat skin disorders such as acne, and reduce signs of aging including fine lines, wrinkles, and sunspots. Red wavelengths can also reduce scarring and make stretch marks less prominent.
NIR wavelengths between 810 and 850 nm address conditions deeper in the body including inflammation, osteoarthritis joint pain, neuropathy, and muscle recovery after exercise. NIR wavelengths reduce inflammation deeper in the body.
The best approach is to use blue, red, and NIR together in a multi-faceted approach that targets surface bacteria, deep systemic inflammation, increased blood flow, increased collagen production, and increased cellular energy production.
Multiple Simultaneous Treatments
For example, if your aim is to improve your skin complexion while soothing minor aches in your muscles, you can treat both conditions simultaneously:
- Blue wavelengths kill bacteria on the skin’s surface (also beneficial if you have any minor wounds)
- Red wavelengths boost collagen production and improve circulation to invigorate the skin and support accelerated muscle repair.
- NIR wavelengths address chronic underlying inflammation to support skin health and muscle repair.
These wavelengths are delivered in a proprietary science-driven ratio that ensures the most comprehensive absorption of blue, red, and near-infrared waves.
The Convenience of RLT Panels
Light therapy panels are much smaller than a red light therapy bed. You can easily put a panel away when not in use. The smallest panel in the lineup, the BIOMAX 300, is perfect for facial rejuvenation, targeted conditions like hair regrowth and carpal tunnel syndrome.
The largest panel, the BIOMAX 900, is intended for full-body treatments.
You can also amplify the irradiance and the treatment coverage by linking two or four BIOMAX panels together and mounting them on a convenient stand.
Expanded Treatment Options
Sometimes, you may wish to lie down while taking a red light treatment. The BIOMAX series panels are designed to mount securely to a horizontal stand that slides next to a bed so you can lie comfortably. This mimics the same setup as a red light bed, but without the claustrophobic feeling.
You can also choose vertical stands to link two or four panels if you want to do yoga or prefer to stand while receiving red light treatment.
Given the versatility of BIOMAX light therapy panels, along with lower cost, a much smaller physical footprint, and a potent combination of six therapeutic wavelengths delivered at the same time, the BIOMAX panels can be considered a great alternative to a light therapy bed.
"My success in treating diagnoses and alleviating symptoms can be attributed to the remarkable versatility of PlatinumLED therapy lights. Their ingenious rack systems, hanging, and mounting setups ensure precise distance control, allowing me to tailor patient care plans with greater precision compared to redlight beds."
Functional Medicine Doctor of Physical Therapy, Dr. Alayna Newton, PT, DPT, FAFS
The BIOMAX Series
Given the high cost and therapeutic drawbacks of a red light therapy bed, we recommend another solution that is more convenient and also more effective.
High-quality LED therapy panels, specifically the BIOMAX series are the optimal choice for at-home treatment.