Cold laser therapy is a treatment also commonly referred to as low-level laser therapy. It is used to treat pain, inflammation, and to improve wound healing.
The most common use of cold laser therapy is to treat short-term pain, but a cold laser can also be used as a cosmetic laser in skin and weight loss treatments (but don’t confuse it with a surgical laser, which is different—there are many types of lasers with various purposes). Thus far, it has been shown to help those who experience chronic pain such as chronic neck or back pain, arthritis, and tendonitis. The temporary relief of pain occurs as the laser stimulates cells in a way that releases endorphins and causes therapeutic results, allowing the patient to relax and ease inflammation.
There is some question as to how it works, and quite honestly, there’s a bit of mystery surrounding it. But it is thought to lower certain levels within the cells and stimulate their mitochondria. There are very specific wavelengths that are used in this type of therapy, but dosages are quite variable depending upon where the treatment is given and for what purpose. It is still a fairly new treatment, but one that many scientists are beginning to study for the endless potential uses it could offer.
One surprising way that cold laser therapy is used is to help smokers give up the habit. The laser is said to release endorphins that help the smoker feel at ease, and in turn imitate the effects that nicotine has on their bodies. Many smokers who have not had luck quitting with other methods have turned to laser therapy as a potential solution.
Although the science and practice of low-level laser therapy is new, it is on the rise as a potential treatment with many different applications. Some companies even claim it helps to treat herpes, migraines, wrinkles, and other conditions. With the many possible benefits of laser therapy, it is no surprise that scientists are quickly conducting legitimate research to help determine the validity of these claims and hopefully provide relief to patients who suffer from chronic pain or require help with wound healing, quitting smoking, migraine headaches, and many more.