LED stands for Light Emitting Diodes, which are semiconductors that convert electrical energy in light wavelengths in specific ranges to have specific effects on the skin.
Light therapy is one of the oldest therapeutic treatments to address various health conditions. Sunlight benefits in treating skin diseases have been used for thousands of years in ancient Egypt, India, and China.
LEDs are complex semiconductors that convert electrical current into narrow spectrum light. Initial work in this area was mainly developed by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). NASA research came about as a result of the effects noted when light of a specific wavelength was shown to accelerate plant growth.
LEDs do not have enough power to cause tissue damage and do not have the same risk of accidental eye damage that lasers do. LED light therapy has been deemed a nonsignificant risk by the Food and Drug Administration. Other advantages over lasers include the possibility to combine wavelengths with an array of various sizes. LED disperses over a greater surface area than lasers and can be used where large areas are targeted, resulting in a faster treatment time.
LED light works by sending energy in wavelengths between 390–1,100 nm into the surface layers of the skin either continuously or pulsed. Studies have found that wavelengths in the range of 390 nm to 600 nm are used to treat superficial tissue, and longer wavelengths in the range of 600nm to 1,100nm are used to treat deeper seated tissues.
Studies have also found that LED Light Therapy can result in reduced inflammatory response in acne, reduce sebum production and pore size, and may increase collage production.