Last week we released a post about what laser therapy is and how it works. This week, we’re going to explain some of the common biological effects that occur during and after a laser treatment.
- Pain reduction
One of the most common reasons patients seek out treatment is because laser therapy reduces pain in both chronic and acute injuries. The photobiomodulation process used in laser treatment has a variety of ways in which it relieves pain. One of these ways is through increasing serotonin levels which impact mood and nerve transmission, in addition to increasing the level of beta endorphins that reduce pain at receptor sites. Laser also reduces bradykinin levels (an inflammatory mediator) in the bloodstream, which reduces pain.
Another very common use of laser therapy is to reduce inflammation of an injured area. In a simple way, laser therapy influences the metabolism of the mitochondria to enhance speed of healing. Laser therapy specifically targets the vasodilation process (the dilation of blood cells), which decreases blood pressure. It also affects other mechanisms of the body, including the reduction of Interleukin-1 production (a component of immune regulation and inflammatory responses) and the mitigations of free radicals in the body. In the end, it all contributes to the improvement of the body’s ability to move through the inflammatory phase of healing at a quicker pace.
- Accelerated tissue repair and cell growth
Research has shown that laser therapy has enhanced tissue repair by aiding leukocytes (white blood cells), macrophage activity (the detection, engulfment and destruction of pathogens in the body) and neovascularization (the formation of new blood vessels). This serves to help tissue repair in addition to new tissue growth. The improved oxidative environment because of these changes to the injured area also help improve quality of scar tissue and reduces the number of adhesions.
- Improved nerve function and healing
There are a few factors that can impact an injured nerve’s ability to heal properly. Slow reparation of function to damaged nerve tissue can result in numbness and impaired sensation in the limbs. The photobiomodulation process helps accelerate nerve cell regeneration. Multiple studies have shown that laser therapy has a positive effect on nerve repair which can dramatically affect pain relief.
We are excited to offer this treatment as of May 1st, and welcome any questions you may have about laser treatment!