HEALITE 830 nm LED-LLLT for Thinning Hair & Hair Loss
The 830 nm wavelength of HEALITE has been reported as very effective in preventing thinning hair (baldness prevention) and in helping to restore hair to areas from which it has already been lost through male or female pattern baldness, or specific diseases of the scalp such as alopoecia areata which results in patchy areas of hair loss.
All our body hair, including the hairs on our head, normally and naturally goes through three stages: anagen, catagen and telogen, and these occur concurrently: one hair strand might be in anagen, and the next one to it is in telogen or catagen. In anagen, known as the growth phase, hairs actively grow just as the name uggests. We want to keep our hair in this stage as long as possible. The length of the anagen phase varies by body site, but on the head it can be from two to six years. The longer the hair is in anagen, the longer the hair can grow if not cut. Over 80% of the hairs on the head are in the anagen phase at any given
time. In this phase, the hair matrix is constantly being gently extended upwards by cell growth from the bulb and follicle (see the illustration), and the follicle moves as deeply as possible into the dermis of the scalp to endure good nutrition and oxygenation from the extensive blood supply found in the scalp.
When the anagen phase has to end, signals are sent out by the body to around 1% of the follicles and the catagen phase, or transitional phase, begins. Under normal circumstances this naturally occurs at the 2 – 6 year mark: obviously the longer this anagen period is, the better. This phase allows the follicle to start to ‘renew’ itself and takes about two weeks during which the follicle shrinks. The base of the hair shaft (the papilla) detaches and ‘rests’, cutting the hair off from its nutritional blood supply. Although hair growth stops, as the follicle contracts it pushes the hair upwards, giving the impression of growth, and the base of the hair is locked in the shrinking follicle thus anchoring the hair in place.
The hair and follicle then enter the telogen or ‘resting’ phase during which the follicle remains dormant for 1 to 4 months and from 10 to 15% of the hairs on the head can be in this phase at any one time. The follicle channel contains skin or epidermal cells, and they continue to grow as normal around the base of the hair which can further anchor it in place. However, at some point growth in the follicle is triggered again as stem cells from the bulge start to differentiate into their genetic fate, i.e., follicle cells and hair buds. At the same time, signals
from the embryonic bulge and papilla attract a new blood supply.
The anchor around the base of the old hair shaft is softened at this stage. The new hair starts to grow up through the renewed follicle, forcing the old hair shaft upwards as it does so, which will eventually fall out in the normal process known as shedding. This late telogen stage is sometimes called the exogen stage.
Once telogen is complete, the new hair will begin to emerge and mature, heralding as it does so the new early anagen phase. The blood supply to the papilla is complete, the bulge has been formed to house stem cells for the next cycle, and the follicle will start to push down into the dermis to be nearer its source of nutrition.
When Things Go Wrong …
The hair cycle continues as explained above under all normal circumstances. However, as we age, things can change to interrupt
the cycle such as hormonal- or genetic-related related changes which will result in the well-recognised male pattern and female
pattern hair loss (male version shown in the upper picture). Problems can occur with the immune system resulting in immunological-related diseases of the scalp such as alopoecia areata, which causes patchy hair loss (lower illustration).
Excessive degrees of stress induce elevated levels of the stress hormones in the blood stream, and these can cause hair loss
known as stress alopoecia. All of these can bring the anagen growth phase to an early end, forcing the hair into the catagen phase much earlier than normal, and from there into telogen. Unfortunately, the follicle is maintained in the mid-telogen phase and does not progress into late telogen so the hair shafts, separated from their blood supply, fall out much more easily and are
not replaced by new hair. All these problems result in thinning hair and hair loss.
How can HEALITE LED-LLLT help?
The scalp is one of the areas in the body which is best supplied with blood vessels, because a plentiful blood supply is absolutely essential to
supply hair follicles with the oxygen and nutrition necessary to keep hair growing normally through the anagen phase and to maintain the growth phase for as long as possible. The blood supply also ensures that the catagen and telogen phases will move smoothly and as swiftly as
possible into the next anagen phase. The figure illustrates the extensive supply of blood vessels to the scalp, and these are only the major
vessels. This is why even a very small wound to the scalp causes extensive bleeding. HEALITE makes use of this extensive vascular
network when treating thinning hair and hair loss.
Try it … You’ll love it!
At its most basic level, HEALITE 830 nm LED-LLLT has been well-proven to ensure an excellent local blood supply, and when the blood supply is insufficient, as often happens in the scalp with ageing process, then not enough nutrition reaches the hair follicle and the papilla at the root of the sir shaft and we get problems with interruption of the hair cycle with thinning hair, and hair loss.
HEALITE LED-LLLT will restore it.
In the illustration, the top panel shows an area of skin in an animal model without 830 nm LLLT with the blood supply measured using real-time Doppler speckle flowmetry, where blue represents poor blood perfusion and red represents high perfusion. The area in the centre of the pictures is the skin being measured, and the small graph to the right shows the degree of the blood supply.The blood perfusion is relatively poor throughout the skin. The bottom panel is 10 minutes after a single treatment with 830 nm LLLT. The blood flow throughthe test area is significantly higher than in the top panel. This is one of the ways we know that 830 nm LED-LLLT will help restore good blood supply to the
scalp in cases of thinning hair and hair loss, waking up the dormant follicles and restoring the normal hair cycle to give new hair, and to strengthen thinning hair.(Pictures courtesy of Junichiro Kubota MD PhD, Total Beauty Clinic, Tokyo,Japan)
Alopoecia areata (mentioned above) is an autoimmune disease which results in areas of discrete inflammation in the scalp. This inflammation breaks the normal hair growth cycle and causes patches without hair due to an extended telogen phase. HEALITE has been well-proven to control inflammation, and studies have also suggested that 830 nm treatment can boost the immune system in a number of autoimmune diseases. These effects combined with an LLLT-improved blood supply will help to combat alopoecia and restore hair to areas from which it has been lost.
“Fight and Fight”, or “Rest and Relax”?
830 nm HEALITE LED-LLLT has been proved to relax anyone undergoing a session … in fact, patients often doze off during the treatment! We have three main nervous systems in our body: the sensory nerves which let us smell, taste and touch, and protect us through the pain reflex; the motor nervous system which controls movement by making muscles work as we want them to; and the autonomic nervous system, over which we have no real control and which manages our heartbeat, breathing and so on. The autonomic system is subdivided into the sympathetic and the parasympathetic systems. The sympathetic system is known as our “fight and flight” system, and is associated with stress and tension, whereas the parasympathetic system is our “rest and relax” system which is associated with pleasant feelings of relaxation and calm. HEALITE treatments are known to banish sympathetic hypertension, and restore parasympathetic relaxation. For the treatment of stress alopoecia, HEALITE is therefore ideal as it is easy to apply, pain-free and side effect free.
The protocol is more or less the same for all types of thinning hair or hair loss. Chronic conditions will obviously take longer to show efficacy. HEALITE LED-LLLT can be applied together with existing remedies, such as the over-the-counter Minoxidil (Rogaine®) or, by prescription only, Finasteride (Propecia®).
There are usually 2 or 3 sessions per week, separated by at least 48 hr, for 4 to 6 weeks followed by a 2-week follow-up period to see how the treatment is working. In many cases, especially for new hair loss or thinning hair, this will be enough with some “top-up” sessions every 4 months or so. For chronic conditions, another regimen is required, with some top-up sessions at 3- to 4-monthly intervals.
The HEALITE system is set up with the 830 nm treatment panels arranged over the head, running from ear to ear and following the contour of the scalp, and about 20 cm from the target. Each session takes just under 14 minutes, and there are no side effects apart from a feeling of rest and relaxation!