Low dose laser light therapy (LLLT) is gaining some popularity for the treatment of male and female pattern hair loss.
In recent times, a range of hand held laser devices have become available for purchase over the internet for use at home. These range in price and quality. Alternatively, many hair loss treatment centres use LLLT as an adjunct to other hair loss treatment methods. Two to three treatments are required each week for a year in many cases. Some people find having to attend a clinic that regularly inconvenient
The theory behind LLLT is that it acts on key enzymes in the hair growth cycle which work to stimulate the metabolic processes involved in hair growth. LLLT also stimulates the release of local factors which improve scalp blood flow.
LLLT certainly has its perks. It is painless and has not been shown to have adverse effects. Like most hair loss treatment methods, patience is required, with most uses only reporting results after at least three months of use.
The jury is out on how effective LLLT is in restoring hair growth. Many dermatologists believe it is a waste of time and money. Others believe that it can be of some benefit, particularly in people who have undergone hair transplantation.
There have been a fair few case reports and anecdotes that LLLT is effective. There have also been some randomised controlled trials showing that LLLT does indeed improve hair density and hair growth. However, the majority of these studies aren’t independent and have been funded by the laser companies themselves. A lot of dermatologists view them with skepticism.
The bottom line is, like most other hair loss treatment methods, LLLT requires commitment and patience. The evidence for it is sketchy, but it is certainly not harmful. If topical treatments and oral medication don’t work for you, it is perhaps a second line treatment worth considering.
The Mosh Team