To date, researchers have yet to find a way to reverse the effects of neuropathy. By definition, neuropathy is a nerve condition brought on by the poor circulation of blood running through the body. Most often, the condition is caused by diabetes. At its worst, the condition causes people to experience pain and discomfort issues in their feet and hands, a condition called peripheral neuropathy.
Without an available treatment method to reverse the condition, patients are left with nothing more than maintenance options. However, there is an emerging technology on the horizon that shows promise in terms of treating neuropathy.
Laser Therapy for Neuropathy
In recent years, researchers have discovered low-level lasers with red or near-infrared red light might have healing powers. Through the use of laser therapy, doctors have been able to treat medical conditions like joint pain, hair loss, vision issues, and skin issues. There is even evidence that laser therapy would help with mental health issues like depression and anxiety.
More recently, neurologists have been experimenting with red light laser therapy to treat patients with significant neuropathy issues. So far, the results have been promising, though more research is necessary.
Specifically, cold laser treatment has been a popular treatment alternative for neuropathy. It works by increasing the blood flow to the affected area or areas. This serves to rejuvenate the nerve endings, which diminishes the effects of neuropathy.
The evidence doesn’t yet suggest laser therapy is a cure for neuropathy, but patients certainly benefit from having to deal with less pain and discomfort. Best of all, the treatment process is painless and affordable.
How Red Light Laser Therapy Works
Human cells need light energy to grow and repair. Absent this light energy, cells remain damaged or die.
Inside human cells are organelles called mitochondria. Mitochondria act as batteries to energize cell growth. When an area is treated with a red or near-infrared laser, the red light stimulates the mitochondria. The mitochondria react by stimulating new cell growth and damaged cell reparations. This serves to increase blood flow and circulation, which specifically addresses the primary issue that causes neuropathy.
About the Laser Therapy Treatment Process
To be clear, the idea of using laser therapy to treat medical conditions like neuropathy is still a new concept. While it shows great promise, researchers have yet to establish specific treatment protocols. That leaves doctors having to experiment a little to find the most effective ways to use laser therapy. Here is what we know so far.
Low level red light laser therapy works best with red or near-infrared light administered at a light wave frequency of intensity of between 600 nm and 1000 nm. For the best results, treatment should be restricted to no more than 2 or 3 times a week for no more than 20 minutes a treatment.
The laser therapy process for neuropathy will take time. Treatment can be administered in a clinical setting. Once the therapeutic process begins, patients can expect to start seeing results in a couple of months. With that said, expectations should be tempered a bit for the first 26 weeks. That is the point at which most patients report significant improvement.
Until reliable treatment protocols can be established, results may vary from one patient to the next. As researchers gather more data, they should be able to determine treatment protocols that work on a majority of patients. For now, we know this treatment process works, though the degree it works varies. Still, it is fast becoming the best treatment alternative for patients who are suffering from neuropathy.