Some parts of the body heal better than others. You’ve probably noticed this if you’ve had a tendon or ligament injury. Tissues that don’t receive much blood flow, like tendons, spinal discs, and some joint structures, may take longer to heal or never heal entirely without help. Fortunately, there are treatments to increase blood flow to these areas and help the body heal itself. One of these treatments is cold laser therapy, a quick, non-invasive treatment that can reduce inflammation, increase blood flow and encourage healing on a cellular level.

Here are five conditions that cold laser therapy can treat:

1. Repetitive Use Injuries

The human body can take a lot, but it eventually takes a toll when we perform the same action day after day. Work, sports, and hobbies that require constant use of the hands, wrists, elbows, or shoulders may cause painful symptoms over time. Repetitive use injuries appear slowly and may flare up or calm down depending on your activities and how you treat them. Common repetitive use injuries include:

  • Tennis elbow
  • Carpal tunnel
  • Trigger finger
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Shin splints

Most of these are caused by either bursitis, tendonitis, or both. Tiny tears in tendons and inflammation of the bursa (the sack around a joint) cause pain and stiffness that gets worse with use. Since these structures struggle to heal independently, they are great candidates for cold laser therapy. Ongoing treatment may be needed, especially if you are still doing the activity that caused the injury, but most people notice a difference after their first couple of treatments. Since laser therapy treatments are quick, usually less than twenty minutes, they easily fit into a busy schedule. You should notice a reduction in pain and stiffness and an improvement in range of motion. Over time you can expect fewer flare-ups.


2. Muscle Strains

Muscles usually receive robust circulation and heal better than other structures. Still, some muscle injuries can take a long time to heal or struggle to heal well. The healing process may stall, or pain and inflammation might make healing more miserable than it needs to be. Early on in the healing process, laser therapy can help muscle injuries heal faster and healthier.

Inflammation is a natural part of healing, but excess inflammation can hinder the process. By encouraging a healthy inflammatory response, cold laser therapy encourages the healing process to move past the initial inflammatory phase. It can be beneficial for areas like the back, legs, and ankles that are in constant use. Older adults often have slow circulation in the legs, resulting in poor healing. Laser therapy brings blood, oxygen, and nutrients to the area, encouraging healing and lowering the risk for infection.

There is no overnight solution to natural healing, but cold laser therapy can help muscle injuries heal faster and decrease pain and stiffness.

3. Ligament Sprains

A ligament sprain is an injury that causes stretching or tiny tears in a ligament. These injuries commonly occur in the knees and ankles. They can also happen in the hands and around the shoulder. The infamous ACL in the knee is a common offender that takes months to heal and sometimes requires surgery. Ligament injuries can happen to anyone, but they affect athletes and those with physically demanding jobs or lifestyles more often. They can also happen due to trauma such as a car accident. Whiplash affects several structures, including the anterior longitudinal ligament of the cervical spine.

Like tendons, ligaments are tough tissue that isn’t well supplied with blood flow. They can take months or years to heal, and many people experience chronic pain or stiffness from incomplete healing. Cold laser therapy uses wavelengths of light that produce a cellular reaction comparable to photosynthesis in plants. The stimulated cells produce more collagen, a key component to healing and strengthening injured tissues.

Cold laser therapy reduces pain and stiffness and can cut down on healing time. It also improves your chances of healing completely. Using cold laser therapy on a new injury is ideal, but even older injuries can benefit.


4. Surgical Incisions

After surgery, your doctor will monitor the wound to make sure it is healing properly. Since most surgeries require cutting through layers of skin and muscle, it can take up to a year for your body to fully recover. Excess inflammation is a common complication of healing after surgery. Medical providers have found that cold laser therapy reduces inflammation and healing time. It can also help manage pain and reduce stiffness throughout the healing process. Not every surgical incision is a candidate, but your doctor can tell you if you might benefit from post-surgical cold laser therapy.


5. Joint Pain

Most adults deal with joint pain at one time or another. Whether from an injury or a chronic condition like arthritis, joint pain can be frustrating or even debilitating. Injuries to the spinal joints, knees, and elbows can be challenging to heal and prone to causing chronic discomfort. Cold laser therapy improves healing in joint injuries and can make you feel better while you heal.

There is no cure for osteoarthritis, but cold laser therapy can mitigate the symptoms and help you feel better. In studies done on patients with arthritis of the knee, improvement in pain, swelling, and range of motion was noticed after every cold laser treatment. Regular treatments may improve your pain and quality of life.

 

Cold Laser Therapy in Kentucky

At All Star Chiropractic, we have seen the difference cold laser therapy makes for our clients with healing injuries and painful chronic conditions. Schedule a consultation today to determine if cold laser therapy is right for you and receive a personalized treatment plan.