If you are experiencing hair loss and choose to take action, you have access to a choice of treatment alternatives. Finasteride and minoxidil are examples of FDA-approved medicines. These act by inhibiting the hormones that cause hair loss or by increasing blood supply to specific parts of the scalp. Then there are personal care items such as shampoos that try to prevent hair loss and promote hair growth. A range of laser hair growth therapies have emerged in the market in recent years. Numerous of these utilize medical-grade lasers to stimulate hair follicles, with claims that regular laser therapy can increase the blood and nutrient supply to your hair.
In this article, we explore the science underlying laser hair growth therapies to determine their efficacy.
What Is Laser Treatment for Hair Loss?
Laser therapy for hair loss, also known as Low Level Light Therapy (LLLT), is a validated treatment that stimulates the regrowth of hair follicles. The procedure is also known as red light therapy and employs a low-powered medical laser, hence the name. Red light therapy, cold laser, soft laser, biostimulation, and photobiomodulation are all alternative names for low-level laser therapy. The laser emits photons into human tissue, allowing weaker cells to absorb them and grow more robust. Due to the fact that medical lasers are cold lasers, one of the numerous names for this procedure is “cold laser therapy.” The absence of heat renders them clinically and medically safe for usage in a variety of applications.
Current evidence suggests that low-level laser therapy may operate by inducing vasodilation (the widening of blood vessels) and boosting blood flow to certain skin regions, such as hair follicles.
According to researchers, this may induce your hair to enter the anagen (growth) phase of its growth cycle. This method of action is comparable to that of minoxidil, one of two FDA-approved treatments for hair loss.
What conditions can laser therapy for hair treat?
Genetic hair loss, pattern balding, androgenetic alopecia, receding hairline, general thinning of hair, and other problems can be treated with laser therapy for hair loss in both men and women. It is possible to use it as a treatment for hair loss all by itself, or it can be combined with PRP (platelet-rich plasma) therapies for hair loss in order to achieve even better results.
Advantages of Laser Hair Loss Treatments
Low-level laser therapy has distinct benefits and drawbacks, just like other hair loss treatment alternatives. This sort of hair loss treatment has the following benefits:
- It is non-invasive and painless. In comparison to methods like hair transplant surgery, laser treatment for hair loss is noninvasive, painless, and requires significantly less recovery time.
- Does not cause side effect: Low-level laser therapy has been shown via research to be a usually safe way to promote hair growth without the negative side effects of some hair loss drugs.
- It seems to work well. Despite the paucity of research, the majority of studies on low-level laser therapy demonstrate that it can promote hair growth.
Disadvantages of Laser Hair Loss Treatments
- It can be costly. Regular laser hair growth treatments can mount up to tens of thousands of dollars over the course of treatment. The purchasing price of laser hair caps, helmets, and other at-home devices is extremely high.
- It takes time and is inconvenient. Compared to taking a daily tablet or undergoing a one-time hair transplant procedure, using a laser hair growth equipment multiple times per week can be time-consuming.
- Although the research is largely favorable, it is not extensive. Currently, much fewer research have been conducted on laser treatment than on hair loss drugs such as minoxidil and finasteride.
- It can interact negatively with some drugs. Laser treatments should not be combined with photosensitive drugs or treatments.
How Do Laser Hair Growth Treatments Work?
The goal of laser hair growth treatments, also known as low-level laser therapy (LLLT), is to treat hair loss and enhance hair development by increasing circulation and promoting new hair growth. Laser hair growth treatments are also used to prevent further hair loss. Laser light, either near-infrared or red, can stimulate the body’s natural processes of tissue repair and regeneration. As a result of this, laser therapy is frequently utilized in the healing of wounds as well as other cosmetic skin treatments.
The majority of laser hair growth therapy devices function by generating a light that is able to penetrate the scalp in order to stimulate hair growth. Proponents of laser therapy think that it may improve blood flow and stimulate hair restoration, despite the scant research in this area that has been conducted by scientists.
Do Laser Hair Growth Treatments Actually Work?
There is not yet a sufficient amount of high-quality scientific data available at this time to definitively determine whether or not laser hair growth therapies are successful. When scientists examining mice in the 1960s observed that the mice began to develop hair after being exposed to a low fluence red laser, this provided the impetus for the first scientific research into laser treatments for hair loss. In the decades that have passed since then, a number of studies have been conducted with the purpose of determining whether or not lasers are effective in treating male pattern baldness and stimulating hair growth.
The findings are not entirely conclusive but are generally favorable. Laser treatments for hair loss tend to enhance certain types of non-scarring hair loss, such as the sort of hair loss that is caused by male pattern baldness, according to the findings of a review of scientific studies that was recently published in the journal Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.
How Much Does Laser Treatment Cost?
The cost of hair loss therapy with a laser might vary depending on factors such as your location, the extent of your hair loss, and the kind of laser device that is utilized during treatment. Laser therapy, when administered in a doctor’s office, will most likely cost something in the neighborhood of one hundred dollars, give or take, for each session. The price of laser treatment equipment for use in the comfort of one’s own home, such as caps, helmets, and combs, can range anywhere from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars.
Recent studies suggest that low-level laser therapy has promising potential for promoting hair growth. Research into laser hair growth products is limited, with many trials being conducted on a small scale and focusing on general hair loss rather than male pattern baldness. In the case of male pattern baldness, a laser device may stimulate hair growth and lead to partial regrowth.
If you’re experiencing hair loss, though, it’s best to consult a doctor about your choices, including FDA-approved drugs that can stop further loss and promote hair growth in thinning areas of the scalp and hairline.
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