Phototherapy is an emerging treatment modality being used in a variety of physical therapy settings. It has had a significant effect on decreasing pain and increasing range of motion.
Therefore the therapy is widely used for pain relief and wound healing without negative or long-term side effects. The treatment parameters can be changed and adapted depending on the type of laser used and the kind of pain (acute or chronic).
When applied properly, phototherapy or Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) has proved to be very efficient in relieving pain and improving wound healing. This therapy aims to restore the normal biological function of injured or stressed cells. Various studies confirm the analgesic effect of phototherapy.
Mechanism of Phototherapy
The therapy involves exposure to light of a specific wavelength comprising polychromatic, polarized lights, lasers, light-emitting diodes, fluorescent lamps, or very bright, full-spectrum light. The light is administered for a prescribed amount of time and, in some cases, at a specific time of day.
Benefits of Phototherapy
The therapy has been very effective, as it
- Reduces pain in a large variety of acute and chronic pain entities including pain related to abnormalities in nerves, soft tissue, muscles, tendons, joints and bone.
- Reduces swelling and inflammation associated with acute injuries in superficial muscles, tendons, ligaments and sheaths.
- Improves wound healing of slow-to-heal or non-healing wounds in soft tissues, tendons and bone due to improved tissue oxygenation and nutrition.
- Improves absorption of interstitial fluid and increases lymphatic circulation and drainage which results in better tissue regeneration.
- Improves local and systemic blood circulation which is useful in blood-related conditions and torpid leg ulcers.
- Enhance autoimmune response in immunodeficient conditions such as psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis and atopic dermatitis.
- Controls hypertension by increasing flow rate and increasing the diameter of the blood vessel.
- Restores normal pigment in abnormally colored cutaneous lesions.
Results of Phototherapy
The low-intensity laser light of this phototherapy penetrates the skin to increase circulation in the tissues below, accelerating healing 40% faster than by the body’s normal means. Through this perfectly safe treatment, inflammation is reduced and pain decreased.
This is a non-surgical, drug-free alternative to treating these conditions, which limit patients’ quality of life. This natural therapy has been used to successfully treat many with a range of conditions.