Light Relief® Blog
Star Wars, Star Trek... Same Thing—Light Therapy's Not Science Fiction
A lot of people look at the technology of light therapy and immediately think of Star Wars. But the simple fact is, it’s not Star Wars at all. It’s actually more along the lines of Star Trek—there’s a distinct difference, and you’ll find out how distinct that difference is, if you accidentally mistake one for the other in the presence of a true science-fiction fan. Regardless, infrared light technology like Light Relief® isn’t something you'll see only on the silver screen anymore. It’s actually being used more often than you think for pain therapy.
The pessimists in the audience might scoff at that, but it’s true. Light therapy technology is seeing a large increase in use among physical therapists eager to bring relief to athletes who might otherwise be sidelined by their injuries. This isn’t to say, of course, that light therapy should be used to deal with pain while ignoring a very real injury—but this is not a technique that simply masks pain. It actually penetrates to relieve pain in your muscles and joints.
You don’t have to be an athlete to try light therapy, and you don’t have to have access to a physical therapist in order to make use of the technology. Small hand-held devices are now available on the consumer market, allowing those in pain to try it in the comfort of their own homes.
Modern Life's Not So Bad When You Consider the Benefits of Infrared Therapy
Say what you will about life being far simpler in eras past—there’s one advantage that being alive in the 21st century has over all other periods of time, and that’s our increasing access to alternative remedies for pain. Years before the advent of infrared therapy, a runner sidelined by an injury might have had to undergo months of therapy to recuperate. Likewise, someone suffering from pain in their muscles and joints would have had little recourse for pain relief. These days, life is a whole lot better.
Scientific advancements in the field of infrared therapy have allowed great leaps not only in the treatment of pain, but also in the area of rapid healing. Light therapy techniques aren’t used just to bring pain relief to injured athletes or painful joints. They’re also used to improve local blood circulation, which has a beneficial impact on the entire body.
As if all this weren’t good enough news, it gets even better. Those seeking alternative remedies for the pain of swollen joints, damaged muscles and other painful conditions no longer have to pay exorbitant doctor’s fees to get treatment. Infrared therapy devices are now available for in-home use, and technology has made it possible for them to be small enough that they can be held in the palm of your hand. If you want a reminder of how much better your choices are these days, imagine trying to get ahold of something like this 20 or 30 years ago. We think you'll agree the options have improved.
LED Therapy and Doubting Thomases
There are an awful lot of people out there looking for alternative pain therapy solutions, but by all accounts, those who have found effective relief are in the minority. That raises the question: Why? With all of the scientific and medical advancements that have been made in the field of pain relief, including LED therapy, you’d think that getting sweet relief from aching muscles and joints and other painful maladies would be easy.
The trouble is, there’s still a sizeable segment of the population that looks at alternative pain therapy devices, like LED therapy units, and shakes their collective heads in disbelief. After all, how can light relieve pain? If that were the case, wouldn’t spending a sunny day at the beach do the same? Not so.
LED therapy works in a much different way than the rays of the sun do. First of all, most of the infrared light that the sun emits is absorbed by the earth’s atmosphere. Secondly, LED therapy works on a much closer, far more concentrated level that aims the light directly to the affected area, bringing about increased circulation. This is where its healing properties lie.
If you’re in search of alternative pain therapy and want to do everything you can to avoid the dangerous side effects of pain medication, look into LED therapy. Companies like Light Relief® manufacture and sell light therapy devices that fit into the palm of your hand and that are easily affordable. When you’ve got nothing to lose except the pain, that’s a winning proposition.
Treating Upper Back and Shoulder Pain with Light Therapy
There are some pretty pervasive upper back and shoulder pain myths out there that you might be surprised to learn aren’t true. For example, did you know that if you’re in pain, the worst possible thing for you to do is to stay in bed until it goes away? While it’s true that you should get much needed rest if you’re suffering from upper back and shoulder pain, overdoing it can actually make matters worse.
Yet another myth tells us that exercising the affected area is bad. In reality, the reverse is true—getting regular exercise can greatly decrease instances of upper back and shoulder pain. But how do you exercise something that’s in pain? The answer to that is: very carefully. And employing the use of light relief therapy can also help increase flexibility and range of motion.
Light Relief® therapy involves the use of infrared lights directed at a specific part of the body. As a result of continued exposure to the infrared light, circulation in the affected area is increased and results in increased blood flow. Light Relief® therapy can be used to soothe pain in the muscles of the upper back and painful shoulder joints, making gentle exercise possible. Just remember to keep your myths in order: rest is good, but too much rest will only make the condition worse; and when you do exercise, don’t overdo it. Slow and easy wins the war against pain.
Treating Knee Joint Pain with a Combo Approach
Experts are quick to point out the fact that in order to fight knee joint pain effectively, patients need to work with their doctor to implement a combination approach to therapy. But what does this entail, and why is it necessary to take a multi-level approach?
Stated simply, there isn’t any single “cure all” that will take care of the problem of knee joint pain on its own. All of the recommended treatments, when attempted individually, may prove insufficient. These include:
Lifestyle change. Patients who are overweight can decrease knee joint pain significantly by losing weight, but in many cases the damage that’s been done won’t be completely eliminated.
Physical therapy. This can include everything from therapeutic massage to light exercise, but even physical therapy, which has been shown to deliver substantial relief from pain, isn’t enough on its own to eradicate pain.
Drugs. This is usually the last resort for most people suffering knee joint pain, but in many cases prescription strength drugs can be avoided through the use of simple anti-inflammatories that help increase flexibility and allow for exercise and physical therapy to work more effectively.
These days, Light Relief® therapy doesn’t require the presence of a doctor and can be self-administered in the home. When combined with diet, exercise and over-the-counter pain relief treatments, Light Relief® therapy can be a critical catalyst to minimizing knee pain and greatly improving your quality of life.
Clearing Up Joint Pain: How to Tell Yourself Apart from a Chair
Your joints are what differentiate you from static, inanimate objects. Do you know how you can tell that you’re not a rock or a chair or a tree? No, it’s not your ability to speak or think—it’s your joints that are the differentiating factor, those all-important connections between your bones that make it possible for you to move around. But if you suffer joint pain; you’re far more likely to want to sit about as still as a rock, chair or tree, rather than suffer the pain of movement. This is an incredible burden to bear, not to mention the risk of additional health problems related to being sedentary. It's also a burden that can be effectively treated through the use of LED therapy.
Needless to say, the LED therapy that you’ll get from a hand-held infrared device won’t be enough to help you break free of your joint-imposed sedentary existence all on its own. But it can be the gateway through which all else—including gentle exercise to build up your muscles, which support your joints—is made possible.
The great news about LED therapy, aside from the fact that it can bring joint pain relief, is that it can be self-administered, it’s not dangerous or addictive, and you can buy the equipment without having to take out a second mortgage on your home. With all that in mind, you really have no reason to avoid looking into owning your own infrared light therapy device—you can thank us later!
The Myth of Sitting Up Straight for Back Pain Relief
Infrared technology is used for the treatment of back pain relief on a regular basis by physical therapists and doctors. The science behind it is accepted: infrared light emitted from an LED and pointed at a specific location on the body can greatly reduce stiffness and pain brought about by a variety of different causes. This technique is widely used in medical clinics throughout the world—but unless you’re able to differentiate between myth and fact when it comes to the prevention of back pain, any type of therapy might be insufficient.
For example, here’s one fact about back pain prevention that you probably weren’t aware of: Everyone talks about the importance of sitting up straight to promote back health, and about how slouching only makes matters worse. But did you know that sitting up straight can also lead to back pain?
According to the experts, sitting up straight for extended periods of time can be just as bad a strain on the back as slouching can be. This is because you’re putting too much stress on the muscles of your back in an attempt to keep it perfectly straight. In many cases, people who are seeking back pain relief take this approach without realizing they’re actually inflicting more pain.
So what’s the answer? To move around frequently and not remain in a single position for too long. By doing this, combined with infrared technology treatment, you can achieve significant back pain relief.
Common Causes of Back Spasms and How Infrared Light Can Help
People who have been unfortunate enough to experience back spasms all say the same thing—that it was one of the most intensely painful experiences they’ve ever had. And people who have never experienced back spasms are usually in agreement upon one thing—that they never want to find out for themselves.
Unfortunately, for many people this is an inevitability, especially when you consider the fact that even a particularly heavy sneeze or cough can sometimes bring about a serious back spasm. But, with the exception of instances such as these, what can you do to prevent experiencing this painful circumstance?
- Learn how to lift. Lifting heavy objects isn’t necessarily bad for you—it’s not knowing how to lift heavy objects that’s the real killer.
- Work on your posture.
- Take care of your back and don’t overwork it.
- Drink plenty of fluids. Dehydration can have an impact on your overall muscle strength.
If you’re in the midst of experiencing a painful fit of back spasms, it may be necessary to seek medical attention. Whether you seek medical attention or not, the use of infrared light therapy can be incredibly effective at calming and soothing agitated back muscles, as well as speeding up the recovery process.
Using LED Infrared Light for Back Pain Management
Before your doctor can recommend a back pain management routine, the first thing that has to be done is to determine the cause of the pain. Since the back is one of the most complex and delicate parts of the human body, it’s often not enough simply to guess at the root cause. Unless that cause is painfully obvious, your doctor will probably perform a number of tests just to be sure. These can include the following:
- A full physical exam. This is generally the first thing your doctor will do, as a way to determine what’s causing the pain and where it may be coming from.
- X-rays are performed in order to rule out fractures or tumors, and to get a look at the overall condition of your spine.
- CT scans and MRI scans are a way to see even further, getting a close-up look at your discs and nerve roots.
To help speed up the healing process by increasing circulation and to provide fast pain relief without having to resort to heavy medications that could have dangerous side effects, many doctors recommend some form of LED pain therapy, either administered at a physical therapy clinic or self-administered in the privacy of your own home. The latter can be accomplished through the use of a hand-held infrared therapy unit, which can be easily purchased. Seen as a far better alternative to making daily visits to a doctor’s office or physical therapy clinic, LED pain therapy devices play an integral role in successful back pain management.
If LED Light Therapy Isn't “Alternative” Then What Is?
A lot of people view infrared light therapy as an alternative pain therapy akin to placing crystals on your forehead or wearing magnets around your neck—in other words, an approach that’s been deemed wacky by the vast majority of the population and the entirety of the medical community. But the truth is, doctors have been using infrared light for pain relief, muscle and joint therapy and to speed up the recovery process for wound healing for a very long time. But if infrared light isn’t what doctors consider alternative pain therapy, what is?
Here are a few examples.
- Mind-body therapy, which includes visualization and meditation.
- Acupuncture. While accepted by many in and out of the medical community as a viable form of pain relief, it still carries the “alternative" label.
- Reiki. This is a massage-based healing method that operates on the idea of a “life force energy” as the main conduit for the healing of pain.
Having been in use for decades in medical facilities for a variety of different ailments, light therapy stands apart from these alternative pain therapies as a scientifically accepted method. Now that LED light therapy devices have made their way onto the private market, their acceptance among regular, every-day skeptics will surely be only a matter of time.