Cold laser light therapy is a fairly new technology. Our office has been using this technology since 2009. It is a very comfortable and short treatment modality. It can be used most of the pain areas but we find this to be most effective with small joint pains and arthritis such as fingers, hand, wrist, elbow, shoulder, feet and knees. Following are the more detailed information from the manufacturer of the unit our office uses.
The light energy absorbed into the patient’s tissue triggers biological changes at a cellular level to provide topical heating for the temporary increase in local blood circulation; temporary relief of minor muscle and joint aches, pains, and stiffness; relaxation of muscles and relief of muscle spasms; and temporary relief of minor pain and stiffness associated with arthritis. The dose and frequency of treatment can be adjusted to produce the desired effect.
Low Level Laser Light differs from ordinary light in four ways. Briefly, it is much more intense, directional, monochromatic and coherent. Most lasers consist of a column of active material with a partly reflecting mirror at one end and a fully reflecting mirror at the other. The active material can be solid (ruby crystal), liquid or gas (HeNe, CO2 etc.).
Low Level Laser Light has unique physical properties that no ordinary light has. This is the key to why laser light is so effective compared to other kinds of light in healing. There are more than 100 double-blind positive studies confirming the clinical effect
of LLLT (Low Level Laser Therapy). More than 2500 research reports are published. The book Laser Therapy - clinical practice and scientific background by Jan Tunér and Lars Hode is a good reference guide for literary documentation.
There is no exact limit with respect to the penetration of the light. The light gets weaker the further from the surface it penetrates. There is, however, a limit at which the light intensity is so low that no biological effect of the light can be registered. This limit, where the effect ceases, is called the greatest active depth. In addition to the factors mentioned above, this depth is also contingent on
tissue type, pigmentation, and dirt on the skin. Fat tissue is more transparent than muscle tissue.
Some laser applicators may cause a noticeable heat sensation, particularly in hairy areas and on sensitive tissues such as lips.