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Shining Light on Autism

What is Autism?

According to Autism Speaks, “Autism, or autism spectrum disorder (ASD), refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by

  • challenges with social skills

  • repetitive behaviors

  • speech and nonverbal communication

According to the Centers for Disease Control, autism affects an estimated 1 in 36 children in the United States today.

We know that there is not one autism but many subtypes, most influenced by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Because autism is a spectrum disorder, each person with autism has a distinct set of strengths and challenges. The ways in which people with autism learn, think and problem-solve can range from highly skilled to severely challenged. Some people with ASD may require significant support in their daily lives, while others may need less support and, in some cases, live entirely independently.

Several factors may influence the development of autism, and it is often accompanied by sensory sensitivities and medical issues such as

  • gastrointestinal (GI) disorders

  • seizures or sleep disorders

  • mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression and attention issues.”

What is Red Light Therapy?

Red light therapy is a form of light therapy that has been gaining popularity in recent years for its potential health benefits. One area of interest is the use of red light therapy in treating symptoms of autism.

At The Wellness Center, red light therapy involves exposure to 4 different LED low-level red light wavelengths, which can penetrate the skin and stimulate every single cell to:

  • Produce more energy

  • Decrease inflammation

  • Promote circulation

  • Promote the body's natural healing abilities.

Red light therapy enhances cellular function and repair, leading to a variety of health benefits.

Red Light Therapy and Autism? WHAT?!?

Several studies have explored the use of red light therapy in treating autism. One study published in the MDPI found that children with autism who received red light therapy experienced significant improvements in social interaction, communication, and behavior. Their results, “Photobiomodulation treatment over an eight-week period has been reported to improve a range of behavioral measures, including social awareness, communication and motivation, and a reduction in restricted and repetitive behaviors. In addition, photobiomodulation treatment for children with autism over a four-week period reduced irritability and other symptoms. These positive outcomes, quite remarkably, appear to be maintained for up to 12 months thereafter. A placebo-controlled clinical trial using verum laser acupuncture indicates improvements in speech and social interactions in people with autism. Further, the use of laser acupuncture in a child diagnosed with autism has been reported to generate a pattern of brain activity similar to that evident in normal children.

Red light therapy is a non-invasive and low-risk therapy, making it an attractive option for those seeking alternative or complementary treatments for autism. While more research is needed to fully understand the therapy's benefits, the evidence so far suggests that it may be a promising option for managing symptoms of autism.

It's important to note that red light therapy should not replace traditional therapies for autism, such as behavioral therapy or medication. However, it may be a useful addition to a comprehensive treatment plan, and it's worth discussing with a healthcare provider.

In conclusion, red light therapy is a promising therapy for managing symptoms of autism. While more research is needed, the therapy's low-risk and non-invasive nature makes it an attractive option for those seeking alternative or complementary treatments. If you or a loved one has autism, it's worth discussing red light therapy with a healthcare provider to see if it's right for you.

Contact The Wellness Center today to explore your options to start feeling better! We’re here to help!

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The information contained in this article, and information curated from third-party links are for informational purposes only and should not be used or interpreted as a diagnosis or medical advice. It is your sole responsibility to consult with your medical doctor regarding any therapy plans or complementary care you might be considering for your personal medical care.

Work Cited

Hamilton, C., et al. “Lights on for Autism: Exploring Photobiomodulation as an Effective Therapeutic Option.” MDPI, MDPI, 27 October 2022, Accessed 17 April 2023.


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