What Is Cold Laser Therapy?
Cold laser therapy is an alternative therapy used by many chiropractors and other health professionals to promote healing in the body. It got its name Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) due to the low-intensity laser therapy used in the procedure.
The procedure uses low levels of light to emit a low temperature to heal damaged tissue. Another reason for the name is that the levels of light are not high enough to heat the body.
This differs from other forms of laser therapy that works with the use of heat to target tumors as well as other cellular issues. During cold laser therapy treatment, the light interacts with the body's tissue to speed up the healing process.
This therapy prescribed for chronic and acute conditions is generally used to reduce muscle spasms, swelling, inflammation, and pain as well as helping patients regain their functionality.
How Does Cold Laser Therapy Work?
When you see the hand-held device, it looks like a flashlight. During the application, clinicians hold the cold laser device directly above the target area being treated. The time the device is used can be anywhere from several seconds to several minutes.
The period of time for an application depends on the medical need and the size of the area the clinician treats. The device uses non-thermal photons of light that penetrate two to five centimeters below three layers of skin.
The light travels past the dermis, epidermis, and subcutaneous tissue layers. The red light therapy reacts with the tissue targeted and causes the damaged cells to begin to regenerate.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, clinicians use wavelengths measuring 600-700 nanometers for superficial tissue. However, wavelengths between 780 to 850 nanometers can be used to penetrate tissue more deeply.