Many people, upon hearing the term ‘laser therapy’ may become alarmed, picturing the laser beams of an epic science fiction film, but nothing could be further from the truth. LLLT, which stands for “low level light therapy”, is also known as cold laser therapy, soft laser, bio stimulation therapy therapeutic laser, and laser acupuncture. It causes no pain, and has been proven effective in the short-term relief of pain due to rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, tendinopathy (which includes both tendonitis and tendinosis), and even chronic joint disorders. Low level laser therapy uses low-level (low power) lasers, or light-emitting diodes to alter cellular function. It can also be useful in the treatment of both chronic and acute neck pain. Where high-level lasers are used to ablate, or destroy, tissue, low-power lasers stimulate tissue, encouraging the cells to function in a healthy manner. This treatment has been cleared by the Federal Food and Drug Administration, allowing patients access to an effective alternative to drugs and/or surgery.
Laser therapy works by delivering a deeply penetrating supply of photonic light energy, which can produce profound changes in the body tissue at the cellular level. Cells soak up this light energy, and convert it to energy to be used in the healing process.
During laser therapy, the laser is placed close to the surface of the skin. It may even rest on the surface of the skin itself. The accompanying probe will then scan the body for the appropriate nerve distribution centers, and the referred pain patterns, based on known protocols as well as patient input. Despite its intimidating name, laser therapy is entirely painless. While in office, patients may experience a pleasant feeling of warmth over the area being treated.
Results may vary from patient to patient in regard to recovery time, as well as the efficacy of the treatment itself. Some patients may experience a dramatic and immediate result in the area of pain relief after just one or two treatments, while in other patients the result may be more subtle in its effects, and gradual in its level of pain relief. These patients may require a full treatment protocol of at least six sessions before noticing significant symptom improvement.
Much like relief provided by acupuncture or physical therapy. Laser therapy has been shown to have a cumulative effect. Patients are, therefore, advised to continue to receive in clinic laser therapy for as long as they continue to experience improvement in their symptoms. Some of the conditions that we have had great success with include: chronic degenerative knee pain, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis), sprained ankles, acute and chronic back pain, TMJ (many times this works like magic on TMJ problems), sinus problems, arthritis in the hands and fingers, shin splint treatment, plantar fasciitis treatment, most sports injuries, and tendonitis. People from the Denver Metro area who have been in auto accidents and have sustained injuries such as whiplash can also benefit from the non-aggressive laser treatment.