Southwest Michigan Dermatology Portage, MI

Light Therapy
Specialist Q & A

Light Therapy

Light Therapy Specialist Q & A

We are delighted to offer light therapy for lasting and effective treatment of psoriasis and other skin conditions! Here At Southwest Michigan Dermatology, we deeply empathize with anyone dealing with psoriasis, which is why our team of board-certified dermatologists, and medical aestheticians are committed to providing the highest quality of psoriasis treatment. Call us for more information.

What is light therapy used to treat?

Not to be confused with the treatment for seasonal affective disorder (SAD), light therapy, also known as phototherapy or LED therapy, is an effective and non-invasive way to treat various skin conditions such as psoriasis! Light therapy can also effectively treat acne, reduce inflammation, and generally fight against the signs of aging.

Does LED light therapy actually work?

LED light therapy is a surprisingly effective procedure for treating psoriasis and other skin conditions! According to a review published by the National Institute of Health, LED light therapy is effective in either reducing symptoms or eliminating them entirely for a significant period in an estimated 50 to 90 percent of all patients.

That said, it is important to know the different types of light therapy, as other types of psoriasis respond better to particular forms of light therapy. Besides sunlight, there are two kinds of light that are effective in treating psoriasis, namely, Ultraviolet light B (UVB) and Psoralen + Ultraviolet light A (PUVA). UVA has a longer wavelength than UVB, which makes it less effective on its own for treating psoriasis. As such, it requires the supplementation of light-sensitizing agents called psoralens to make the skin more receptive to the light. Both of these forms of light therapy work by penetrating the skin and slowing down the excessive growth of skin cells, which is the primary cause of psoriasis. Furthermore, both UVB and PUVA come in different forms, such as broad- or narrow-band UVB, laser UVB, topical PUVA, oral PUVA, UVB phototherapy, and more.

At Southwest Michigan Dermatology, our board-certified dermatologists can evaluate your skin condition, provide you with an informed recommendation as to what type of light therapy is likely to work best for you and go over the options for how to administer the treatment. In general, UVB has proven to be effective for scalp psoriasis, as well as chronic psoriasis and inverse psoriasis, while PUVA helps with stable plaque psoriasis, guttate psoriasis, and psoriasis that affects the palms and soles of your feet (palmoplantar psoriasis).

How long does it take for light therapy to work?

Light therapy for psoriasis is typically administered over a series of three to five sessions over two to three months. As such, some patience is required when undergoing light therapy for psoriasis, but it will most likely be worth it! Moreover, you will likely notice improvements during treatment, typically within two to four weeks of the first session. Moreover, once the results of light therapy take hold, they can last for up to one year and three months at the very least!

If you think light therapy can improve your psoriasis or another skin condition, we extend a hearty welcome to come to Southwest Michigan Dermatology! For an appointment, please feel free to schedule one through our website or give us a call at any point between 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM from Monday to Friday. You can Southwest Dermatology Clinic at the convenient location of 3000 Old Centre Road in Portage, Michigan.

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