Soothing Hangover Woes with Red Light Therapy: A Guide to At-Home Relief
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Soothing Hangover Woes with Red Light Therapy: A Guide to At-Home Relief
Create on 2024-03-08
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Drinking alcohol is now an indispensable thing in our lives. Whether for enhancing social interactions or entertainment, we often enjoy drinking with friends. However, the hangover symptoms that come with it are often daunting. The aftermath of a night out is usually a headache, fatigue, listlessness, and other uncomfortable symptoms. Most of these are caused by alcohol, toxins in the body, and a slower metabolism. Delayed cognitive function during your intoxication may be associated with poor sleep due to alcohol consumption. Hangovers can make it hard to focus and negatively affect daily tasks such as driving. I will introduce you to the fastest way to relieve headaches and fatigue after drinking. As a hangover relief-inducing product, Red light therapy is gradually becoming an emerging remedy to alleviate these symptoms due to its impressive benefits and uses.

 Red Light Therapy for Hangover

How Does Red Light Therapy Relief Hangover?

LED light therapy is a specific form of RLT, comprised of a visible red and near-infrared light within the therapeutic wavelength ranges of 660–850 nm. Upon exposure of the body to low-level light, it has super penetrating power, which stimulates cell biological and photochemical reactions. RLT may soothe the head and promote recovery by enhancing mitochondrial function and circulation, offering an unconventional yet promising approach to hangover management. Let's look at RLT's unique benefits over traditional hangover cures.

  • Pain Relief

Drinking has intoxicating and narcotic effects that are more substantial, which can congest the nervous system and give people headaches. RLT is effective in lowering acute, subacute, and chronic inflammation-induced pain. It can boost the phagocytosis of white blood cells and improve the body's immune function to strengthen its defense function. After drinking, in the early and middle stages of inflammation, the serotonin content of local tissues reduces, which results in pain in the body in the form of headaches and body aches. Red light therapy regulates the serotonin content by playing an analgesic role.

  • Improved Circulation

Red light therapy not only relaxes the body but also increases blood circulation and helps to remove toxins. The low-level red light energy opens up your blood vessels, allowing blood to be pumped through your system more efficiently. As a result, your blood passes through the liver more often, and the liver filters waste products such as acetaldehyde from alcohol. " The more blood that flows through your liver, the more toxins get filtered out.”

  • Stress Reduction

When your body is dysregulated by excessive alcohol consumption, inflammatory pathways can flare up and leave you in fight-or-flight mode, manifesting as feeling anxious or troubled. In addition, alcohol is a central nervous system (CNS) depressant, which can make you feel down. Alcohol can cause your mood-regulating neurotransmitters to spiral out of control, which can also trigger anxiety. That's where RLT comes in: this therapy has been used for thousands of years as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and gentle sedative. Both short-term and long-term exposure to RLT can alleviate anxiety symptoms.

  • Enhanced Recovery

Alcohol can disrupt sleep, especially REM sleep. It can also cause frequent nighttime awakenings while exacerbating snoring and sleep apnea. Sleep deprivation can aggravate all the symptoms of a hangover, so it's essential to bring your circadian rhythm back into balance. Sleep is also the best way to alleviate physical pain caused by hangovers. Red light therapy balances levels of the stress hormone cortisol. It may help relieve hangover symptoms other than anxiety, and it can improve sleep. What's more, it can help to combat the adverse effects of alcohol on your energy levels. RLT can wake you up when you're groggy or help you get a super restorative sleep before bed.

 Red Light Therapy for Recovery

Red Light Therapy Safety Practices

Portable at-home red light therapy devices make this remedy accessible for those seeking better hangover solutions. Not all red light therapy is the same. Choose an RLT device keeping these factors in mind: wavelength, intensity, light quality, design, and customer reviews. Always purchase high-quality red light therapy devices from a reputable manufacturer to experience the range of health and wellness benefits. One should also be well aware of the dangers of red light therapy if used improperly. Overexposure to red light or incorrect application can cause skin damage and other health concerns. Following standard application protocols is imperative for safe and effective at-home red light therapy usage.

Bottom Line

In short, the benefits offered by red light therapy—reduced inflammation and pain alleviation—can be instrumental in combating the discomfort after excessive alcohol consumption. While full-body red light therapy at home might seem like a modern-day panacea for hangovers, exercising caution and adhering to proper usage recommendations are crucial. When applied correctly, RLT might be the key to unlocking a more tolerable post-celebration morning.

References and Citations:

[1] Glass G. E. (2021). Photobiomodulation: The Clinical Applications of Low-Level Light Therapy.The Aesthetic Surgery Journal41(6), 723–-738.https://doi.org/10.1093/asj/sjab025 

[2]  Jayawardenna, R., Thejani, T., Ranasinghe, P., Fernando, D., & Verster, J. C. (2017). Interventions for treatment or prevention of alcohol hangover: Systematic review. Human psychopharmacology32(5), 10.1002/hup.2600.https://doi.org/10.1002/hup.2600 

[3] Cheng, K., Martin, L. F., Slepiaan, M. J., Patwardhan, A. M., & Ibrahim, M. M. (2021). Mechanisms and Pathways of Pain Photobiomodulation: A Narrative Review. The journal of pain22(7), 763–777.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpain.2021.02.005 

[4] Tomaz de Magalhães, M., Núñez, S. C., Kato, I. T., & Ribeiro, M. S. (2016). Light therapy modulates serotonin levels and blood flow in women with headache. A preliminary study. Experimental biology and medicine (Maywood, N.J.)241(1), 40–45. https://doi.org/10.1177/1535370215596383 

[5] Gomes, A. O., Martimbianco, A. L. C., Brugnera Junior, A., Horliana, A. C. R. T., da Silva, T., Santos, E. M., Fragoso, Y. D., Fernandes, K. P. S., Nammour, S., & Bussadori, S. K. (2022). Photobiomodulation for the Treatment of Primary Headache: Systematic Review of Randomized Clinical Trials. Life (Basel, Switzerland)12(1), 98. https://doi.org/10.3390/life12010098 

[6] Lin, T. H., Yang, C. C., Lee, S. Y., Cheng, C. M., Tsai, I. J., Wei, C. Y., & Yang, C. P. (2023). The effect of bright light therapy in migraine patients with sleep disturbance: A prospective, observational cohort study protocol. Frontiers in aging neuroscience14, 1041076. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnagi.2022.1041076 

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