Therapeutic lasers deliver specific red and near-infrared wavelengths of laser light to induce a photochemical reaction and therapeutic effect. Physiological effects include increased circulation, reduced inflammation, pain reduction and enhanced tissue healing. Laser therapy has been used in Europe since the 1970s and was cleared by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2002.
Laser Therapeutic Effects
During each painless treatment, laser energy increases circulation, drawing water, oxygen, and nutrients to the damaged area. This creates an optimal healing environment that reduces inflammation, swelling, muscle spasms, stiffness, and pain. As the injured area returns to normal, function is restored and pain is relieved.
During therapy, infrared laser light interacts with tissues at the cellular level increasing metabolic activity within the cell. By improving the transport of nutrients across the cell membrane, the increased production of cellular energy (ATP) is stimulated. The cascade of beneficial effects that follows includes increased cellular function and tissue repair.
Why Is It Necessary To Use Different Frequencies?
Different pulse frequencies elicit different physiological responses. During laser therapy, it is beneficial to deliver a variety of pulse frequencies. Research has proven that utilizing the right frequencies, therapy can target the right amount of bone, soft tissue, and fat. Our lasers utilize this approach. This dynamic range, combining 4 wavelengths and frequencies from CW to 20,000 Hz, has the best chance at stimulating all of the body’s cells to heal themselves more efficiently.
Why are wavelengths so important?
Wavelengths determine laser energy’s depth of penetration in tissue and specifically target beneficial chromophores to stimulate the photo-chemical reaction.
Irradiating an area with 660nm, a wavelength where melanin in our skin absorbs very well, will ensure a large dose to the superficial region. Since light can both inhibit bacteria and promote cell growth, laser therapy has incredible results in wound healing and scar tissue regulation.
At this wavelength, each photon gets converted to heat increasing a temperature gradient at the cellular level stimulating the micro-circulation and increases blood flow to the tissues. This increases delivery of more oxygen-fuel to the cells.
Our red blood cells contain hemoglobin, the protein that transports oxygen from the lungs to the tissues. Each hemoglobin holds four oxygen molecules and typically only one oxygen is released to the cells and carbon dioxide is picked up and carried to the lungs in exchange for another oxygen to complete the cycle. The peak of hemoglobin’s absorption lies at 905nm, when this wavelength is absorbed, more oxygen-fuel is made available to the cells. The quicker oxygen is released into the blood stream, the more fuel the cell has to carry out all of its natural healing processes.
The enzyme determining how efficiently the cell converts molecular oxygen into ATP has the highest absorption at 800nm. Regardless of the enzyme’s molecular state, when it absorbs a photon it will flip states. Photon absorption will accelerate the process and increase cellular ATP production.