Laser therapy is a safe, non-invasive technique used to improve microcirculation. It is an effective tool for reducing pain and inflammation related arthritis and myofascial pain syndromes. It can be used safely as an adjunct or replacement to pharmaceutical pain relievers.
Our clinic utilizes a Class IV 9W LiteCure Laser which utilizes a 980nm wavelength. Red blood cells and water molecules, in particular, love this wavelength and are metabolically stimulated by this near infrared wavelength. These cells will absorb the light energy in their mitochondria and convert it to ATP – the form of energy used by all cells. This huge surge in ATP allows the cell to carry out its function at a very high efficiency meaning the cell instantly becomes better at transporting, repairing or reproducing. Increased cellular efficiency = Reduced healing times!
Increased microcirculation means we are improving local blood flow to an area. When muscles and joints ache it’s often because they are ischemic and therefore lacking oxygen. These low oxygen levels in the tissues send “danger” signals to the brain which are interpreted as pain if the signals reach a certain threshold. Increasing the blood flow to the region improves oxygen delivery to the tissues which is often why patients experience immediate pain relief with high powered lasers.
Class IV laser is different than Class IIIa/b lasers which you may have heard referred to as “cold lasers” or “low level laser therapy”. Class III lasers penetrate effectively up to 1cm and treatments take approximately 20-60 minutes. No heat is generated and you won’t feel the effects taking place even though you are improving cellular efficiency. Class IV lasers are much higher powered and thus require more safety precautions including specific protective eyewear.
Laser is unsafe in the following conditions:
-You have an active tumour or infection. Cancer’s that have been declared in remission for at least 6 months – consult your health care provider first.
-Over the trunk or abdomen if you are pregnant
-Over glandular tissue such as the thyroid
-Over growth plates in children under age 18 except in the case of Osgood-Schlatter’s
-You are taking medications that increase your sensitivity to light i.e. Acutane. Please check all your medication labels for this warning prior to your visit and bring a list of all medications with you to your appointment.
-You’ve had a steroid injection within the past 7 days
Because laser therapy has contraindications and very powerful therapeutic effects, you must be assessed by the licensed healthcare provider that is overseeing your laser therapy. Our chiropractors are certified to assess your condition and determine the appropriate dosage of laser therapy required. Our certified laser technicians will deliver the dosage of laser therapy under supervision of a chiropractor.
For more information on our laser please visit www.litecure.com or stop by the office to pick up a brochure.