Low Level Laser Therapy
What is LLLT?
LLLT, also known as Photobiomodulation or Cold Laser Therapy (CLT), is the application of low power laser beams to skin to enhance cellular functions. In this process light is absorbed by damaged cells, triggering a series of cellular changes. These are found to modulate cellular metabolism, which stimulate the immune system, reduce inflammation, accelerate the tissue healing processes and achieve pain relief and other processes of reducing the illnesses.
Unlike cosmetic lasers, LLLT emits no heat, sound, or vibration. Instead of producing a thermal effect, LLLT acts via non-thermal (hence first given the name of cold laser) or photochemical reactions in the cells, which is why LLLT is sometimes also referred to as photobiology or biostimulation.
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- How does cold laser work?
- What is the treatment regime like?
- Does it hurt?
- Is it safe?
- Does it have any side effects?
- Is there a risk of developing skin cancer from exposures to Laser beam?
- Who may not be suitable for LLLT?
- Would normal tissue be affected?
Once the light (of a specific wavelength) penetrates skin and reaches targeted damaged tissues, it is absorbed by light sensitive elements of the cell in a process similar to photosynthesis in plants – absorbed light is converted to usable energy, which lead to reduction of inflammation, pain relief, enhanced immune response and overall, the healing time also shortens due to more efficient cellular metabolism.
This varies for different conditions. Time of each session is typically between 25 minutes to 50 minutes and should be applied two or more times a week. The frequency of treatments and duration of treatment will depend on the severity of your symptoms and other factors. Ultimately, you will elect the number of treatments.
LLLT is a non-invasive treatment. Patients generally do not feel any sensation during the treatment. LLLT certainly does not hurt.
While LLLT is safe to irradiate tissues, one should never stare directly into the beams. We provide safety eyewear during the treatment.
No adverse side effect is documented so far. Some patients may feel tiredness, thirstiness, sleepiness and so on for a little while following the treatment. In addition, some patients (applicable for patients on pain management program) may feel slightly heightened painful sensations a few hours after treatment, this is consistent with literatures, which describe this as the initiation of the cellular healing process, this is not expected to last long.
To date, there have been no reports of cell mutation as a result of low level laser irradiation in research articles published.
There are some contraindications (not suitable) to the use of LLLT, these include:
- Irradiation of the abdomen for pregnant patients
- When malignant tumours are located in a target area for application.
- Light sensitive patients – pulsed light may trigger seizure for some epilepsy patients, though no incident has been reported if continuous or invisible beams are applied.
Healthy cells also absorb light. Damaged or stressed cells, however, are associated with lower absorption threshold. That is why they are more likely to receive the benefit of LLLT.
- Pain Relief and Inflammation
- Peripheral Nerve Damages/Neuropathy
- Acute / Chronic Low Back Pain
- Acute / Chronic Neck Pain
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Osteoarthritis – Neck / Back / Knee /Hands
- Post Herpetic pain / Shingles Pain
- Tennis Elbow / Elbow Pain / Arthritis
- Plantar Fasciitis / Heel Spur Pain / Achilles Tendonitis
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Sports Injury
- Skin Ulcer (Diabetic Ulcer)