Light Therapy as a Natural Management Option for Chronic Conditions
Updated: May 10, 2022
Including anxiety, depression, chronic pain, chronic fatigue, skin conditions, and poor sleep
Most people think of a Physical Therapist as someone who helps people recover from car accidents, work injuries, and surgeries. In fact, we do so much more. The definition of Physical Therapy is “the treatment of disease, injury, or deformity by physical methods…rather than by drugs or surgery.” In this article, I will be discussing our use of Photobiomodulation (PBM) therapy, or the use of light in specific wavelengths to help the body to promote healing and to fight inflammation and damage.
Oxidative Stress: The Underlying Cause of Chronic Conditions
The underlying cause of most chronic conditions down to the cellular level is oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is the disturbance in the balance between the production of reactive oxygen species (free radicals) and antioxidant defenses. Excessive oxidative stress causes cellular damage and can even damage our body’s proteins and DNA over time.
Causes of Oxidative Stress
Several factors contribute to oxidative stress and excess free radical production. These factors include, but aren’t limited to:
• Poor diet
• Sedentary lifestyle
• Lack of exercise
• Excess stress
• Excess drinking
• Exposure to environmental chemicals, toxins, pollutants
The body’s natural immune response can also trigger oxidative stress temporarily. This type of oxidative stress causes mild inflammation that goes away after the immune system fights off an infection or repairs an injury, and this is helpful. Uncontrolled oxidative stress can accelerate the aging and degenerative process and may contribute to the development of a number of conditions, including orthopedic, neurological, and cognitive.
What is Photobiomodulation Therapy and how can it help fight Oxidative stress and chronic conditions?
Red and near-infrared light (at specific wavelengths) is readily absorbed by receptors in our body’s cells, activating the natural energy process. These wavelengths of light promote ATP production, which boosts energy transport in the cells, and helps kick free radicals off our cells. This helps the body’s natural healing process to aid in reduction of inflammation and tissue damage. Red and near-infrared light are difference from blue and UV light because whereas blue and UV light mainly affect the upper layers of the skin, red light can be absorbed by cells deeper in the body.
What can Photobiomodulation Therapy help?
There is evidence to suggest that PBM therapy can help the following conditions:
• Nerve pain and nerve regeneration
• Soft tissue healing
• Anxiety and depression
• Skin conditions
• Muscle performance and recovery
• Sleep and energy
Photobiomodulation therapy has been around and studied for over 60 years, but recent advances in technology have allowed more accessibility of medical and health clinics to start incorporating its use to help patients achieve their health goals. The Theralight 360 is also FDA approved as a device to help aid in weight loss, as it promotes a healthier metabolism and aids in regulation of blood glucose and A1C levels.
If you would like a free phone or in-person consultation to learn more about how our Theralight 360 Photobiomodulation therapy can help you, click here https://www.thegrpt.com/events-and-offers
In good health,
Dr. Ashley Bertorelli, PT, DPT, Founder of The Green Room Physical Therapy
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Clifton Park & Troy