Dr. Oz Show Cold Laser Therapy
Cold laser therapy is a relatively new technology compared to many alternative therapies like acupuncture (which has been used since 8000-3500 B.C.), chiropractic (since 1895) and physical therapy. Just like the abacus evolved into the computer, many alternative medicine practices are evolving to include laser therapy. Recent innovations in low-level lasers now make it possible for practitioners or consumers to own high quality cold laser equipment. The first cold laser was FDA cleared in 2001. Cold lasers are sometimes called Low Level Lasers (LLL) or soft lasers.
In general, cold lasers can be used in 2 distinct ways:
- Targeting acupuncture trigger points (similar to acupuncture but without the needles)
- Broad coverage of tissue and bone with IR or Red light photons to reduce pain and stimulate healing
Cold Laser therapy offers a non-intrusive option to acupuncture and surgery. It also provides a non-addicting treatment that eliminates the complications of long-term drug treatment programs. Cold lasers are FDA cleared and widely use for treatment of:
- Acute and chronic pain
- Ligament sprains
- Muscle strain
- Soft tissue injuries
- Tennis elbow
- Back pain
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Healing With Cold Lasers
The cold laser produces an impulse of light at a specific wavelength (usually 600 to 980nm) that minimizes reflection and scattering but maximized absorption of the the energy (in photons) at a desired depth.
Some conditions like joint pain require a deep penetration (4-5 inches) that can only be achieved using a powerful laser emitter. Many systems also have other lower wavelengths and lower-power emitters for treating shallow tissue (like the lymphatic system or surface scars). For shallow treatments, light emitting diodes (or LEDs) with a shorter wavelength (600 to 700nm) are more cost effective for adding photons to the shallower tissue. In addition, red light diodes with a wavelength of 630 to 680 nm may be used to add energy to even shallower levels of tissues. It is the general consensus that wavelengths below 660 nanometers are very easily absorbed in the surface tissue and are not optimized for deep tissue healing.
The goal of laser therapy is to deliver light energy units from red and infrared laser radiation, called photons, to damaged cells. It is the consensus of experts is that photons absorbed by the cells through laser therapy stimulate the mitochondria to accelerate production of ATP. This biochemical increase in cell energy is used to transform live cells from a state of illness to a stable, healthy state.