Cold laser therapy, also called soft laser therapy or low-level laser therapy (LLLT), was developed and used for the first time in the 1960s.
It helps people of varying ages stimulate the natural healing process and reduce inflammation. Since the therapy produces its results without any invasion or pain and is gaining a lot of popularity, some people may consider it a hoax.
But the truth is, it has been studied by many scientists due to its effectiveness, and several pieces of research prove that it’s authentic. Even the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it for multiple conditions.
Read the article to deeply understand cold laser therapy and find if it is a hoax or a genuine therapy.
What is cold laser therapy?
Cold laser therapy uses low-intensity light of varying wavelengths to interact with body cells to manage inflammation and pain while increasing blood circulation in the injured area.
You should not confuse it with the high-intensity laser that is mainly used to remove tumors, cut through tissues, and increase tissue temperature to reduce pain.
Light photons of cold laser therapy are not powerful enough to cut through tissues, but they can still penetrate your skin and reach the affected area to promote healing.
How does cold laser therapy work?
A cold laser therapy device has a handheld wand containing multiple light-emitting diodes that produce the cold laser of varying wavelengths. The clinician or therapist brings the wand close to your skin or places it on the skin above the target area.
Low-energy photons reach the injured tissue and bring a few chemical changes to it. Resultantly, regeneration begins, and cells start producing more ATP (adenosine triphosphate) to speed up the healing process.
The cold laser therapy device sends laser pulses of 30 to 60 seconds long duration. Usually, wavelength varying from 600 to 700 nm is used to treat superficial issues. On the other hand, longer wavelengths varying from 780 and 950 nm are preferred for deeper penetrations.
The treatment lasts for a few minutes depending on the size of the injured area and the intensity of the pain. You need to get multiple sessions to observe results. You will not feel pain or heat during a session.
What does laser therapy do?
Doctors, physiotherapists, and other medical health professionals use a cold laser therapy device to relieve pain, decrease inflammation, support regrowth, and repair injured tissues.
It can help you treat the following health conditions.
- Neck pain
- Knee pain
- Elbow pain
- Ligament sprain
- Muscle spasms
- Muscle strains
- Soft tissue injuries
- Pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis (R.A.) and fibromyalgia
- Diabetes wounds, which are generally difficult to heal
Cold laser therapy offers several benefits. Here are a few reasons why people like this therapy.
- It does not cut your skin or tissue and treats the problem without any invasions, making it a great alternative to surgery.
- This therapy is drug-free, which makes it suitable for people unable to take pain-relieving medications due to a certain medical condition.
- It neither hurts nor produces an uncomfortable feeling.
- Studies show that it can treat both acute and chronic conditions.
- It does not cause major complications that some other treatment options may cause.
How much does low-level laser therapy cost?
The cost of low level laser therapy is determined by multiple factors, including your locality, your doctor’s experience or consultation charges, the number of therapy sessions you have, the extent of your pain, the size of the affected area, etc.
On average, a single cold laser therapy session can cost you from $70 to $100 in the U.S. The majority of insurance plans do not cover this therapy.
Learn the exact number of sessions you would need, so you can estimate the total cost beforehand.
Conclusion – Is cold laser therapy a hoax?
Cold laser therapy has been used for decades to manage pain and inflammation. Many people are skeptical about it due to the way it treats the problem (without pain or drug).
As a number of research studies show that it does alleviate pain and reduces inflammation, many people are now choosing this non-invasive treatment option over some invasive treatments.
If you are considering cold laser therapy, you should discuss its pros and cons with your doctor to find if it is the right treatment for you!