Laser Therapy for Pain: Best Devices, Pros & Cons, Safety

About 40% of people worldwide suffer from some form of pain, and for many of them, traditional medicines don't help. This is where laser therapy comes in. Below we'll discuss this type of treatment, best devices, and define all the pros and cons.

Millions of people around the world suffer from pain. It can be a debilitating condition that affects every area of your life. If you are one of these people, you should consider laser therapy as a treatment option. This is a relatively new treatment but has already proven effective.

In this article, we will look at laser therapy for pain relief. We will discuss the features, pros and cons of this treatment and the available devices which you can use at home.

IASO Cold Laser

Best post-workout recovery device

✔️ The most effective for post-workout recovery due to its compact size and the ability to apply to any part of the body;

✔️ Has three modes where you can combine the laser treatment with vibration massage for an even better experience.

More info

Venom Back

Best back pain relief device

✔️ The most effective device for the treatment of back pain due to its comfortable shape and combination of laser and vibration that relaxes muscles and improves blood circulation;

✔️ The flexible design and included straps that attach securely to your body, so you don’t have to worry about the device can slip off.

More info

LightStim

Best device for arthritis treatment

✔️ The most effective for the treatment of arthritis due to the technology of emission of four wavelengths of light at the same time, which reaches the deepest tissues and relieves pain and inflammation;

✔️ Works from the socket, so you can not worry that the device will turn off at the time of the treatment session.

More info

Flex Mitt

Best hand pain treatment device

✔️ The most effective device for the treatment of pain in the hands and wrist, thanks to the shape of the glove;

✔️ Fits all hand sizes and is safe for all skin types.

More info

How does laser therapy work for pain relief?

Laser therapy is a type of pain relief that uses a low-level laser (LLLT) to stimulate the body’s natural relief process.

Laser therapy is also referred to as photobiomodulation, low-power laser therapy, or soft laser therapy.

Laser therapy is different from other types of lasers, such as those used for surgery, which emit high levels of energy that can damage tissue. This kind of therapy uses low levels of energy that are safe, painless, and works by stimulating the body’s cells to promote healing.The lasers emit energy in the form of light that is absorbed by the cells in the body, stimulating them and increasing their production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). It is an important molecule that plays a role in many cellular processes, including cell division and protein synthesis. By increasing the production of this molecule, cold laser therapy help to improve circulation, which can relieve pain and reduce inflammation.

LLLT promotes increased blood circulation which promotes the healing process
LLLT promotes increased blood circulation which promotes the healing process
Learn more about infrared light therapy and its ability to relieve pain, as well as devices you can use at home.

What type of pain can be treated with laser therapy? 

Laser therapy can stimulate all types of cells, including muscles, ligaments, cartilage, nerves, etc., so a number of diseases can be treated with it. 

Some of the conditions that can usually be treated with laser therapy include:

  • Arthritis pain

Arthritis is a common disease that causes pain and inflammation in the joints. Laser therapy can help reduce both of these symptoms, as well as reduce hand stiffness and improve flexibility [1].

Take a look at LightStim, which can help relieve arthritis symptoms.

  • Back pain

Laser therapy can be effective in treating both chronic and acute back pain. It can help to reduce inflammation and speed up the healing process [2].

If you have back pain, take advantage of Venom Back, a device that provides soothing muscle pain.

Laser Therapy for Pain: Best Devices, Pros & Cons, Safety
  • Neck pain

Neck pain is a common condition that can be caused by various factors such as injury, poor posture, uncomfortable sleeping position, etc. Laser therapy can help reduce inflammation and pain by absorbing the light emitted. It stimulates the production of intracellular energy, which enhances the recovery processes [3].

  • Neuropathic pain

This type of pain is caused by damage to the nervous system. Laser therapy desensitizes the nerves by reducing levels of bradykinin, which promotes inflammation. As inflammation decreases, so do pain [4].

If you are experiencing symptoms of neuropathy in your hands, look to Flex Mitt, a device that can help you regain your mobility.

Learn more about neuropathy features, treatments, and the best home light therapy devices.
  • Postoperative pain

Laser therapy may be used to reduce pain after surgery. It impulses cellular activity, which means increased energy production and recovery process [5].

In addition to relieving pain, laser therapy can also help reduce inflammation and swelling and promote the healing of wounds and injuries, as well as relax muscles after a workout.

Best devices for pain management

IASO Cold Laser

IASO Cold Laser

Best post-workout recovery device

IASO сold laser is a safe, non-drug treatment for injuries, chronic pain, and degenerative conditions. The combination of longer (830 nm) and shorter (680 nm) waves allows you to influence deep and superficial tissues, stimulating the body’s natural repair process.

The device combines cold laser therapy with a massage function. There are three different modes in total, so depending on your condition, you can combine sessions using only a laser or vibration.

It is also worth noting that the device is very compact, but this does not impair its effectiveness. The size makes it easy to carry with you wherever you go without causing any inconvenience. Because of this, the laser is very fond of athletes, since the device can be applied to any place on the body for point heat and vibration effects.

To use the IASO, all you need to do is take an armband to tie around your arms, or adhesive patches (come in a set) to attach the device to any part of your body for immediate pain relief and muscle relaxation.

Venom Back

Venom Back

Best back pain relief device

Venom Back is a wearable wrap that uses cutting-edge laser treatment innovation to offer a muscle recovery treatment for low back pain and soreness.

The device dissipates heat using technology with four evenly spaced vibration blocks, providing deep back massage. Plus, the flexible design and included straps keep your device secure, so you don’t have to worry about slipping off.

As for vibration, you can choose:

  • Wave (in which the vibration passes through the four vibration blocks in short pulses);
  • Pulse (in which the entire device alternately turns on and off);
  • Constant (a steady stream of vibration). 

Based on your condition and for the best experience, you can use the option you want.

However, you should consider its bulky design, which is not suitable for on-the-go treatment, unlike the compact IASO cold laser. It’s also not the easiest device to use. Based on user reviews, the control panel is in an awkward position to manipulate, but its efficiency covers these minor drawbacks.

LightStim

LightStim

Best device for arthritis treatment

LightStim is an FDA-approved device that emits light energy to reduce pain. It uses patented MultiWave technology to emit four wavelengths of light (red — 630, 660 nm, and infrared — 855, 940 nm) at the same time, which impulses the body’s natural pain relief process for a quick effect. Based on this, this device is good for the treatment of arthritis. It is also a way to relieve muscle pain, stiffness, and muscle inflammation.

Another feature is that manufacturers don’t try to make LightStim multitask. They target each of their devices for one specific treatment thereby increasing its efficiency and safety.

However, keep in mind that the device is held in the hands and must work directly from the outlet, unlike the wireless devices Venom Back and IASO сold laser.

Flex Mitt

Flex Mitt

Best hand pain treatment device

Flex Mitt is an innovative product that can help you get rid of chronic hand and wrist pain quickly and easily.

The device illuminates your hand with red and infrared light while you are wearing a glove. These wavelengths penetrate deep into your skin and allow them to interact with the muscles that are causing your pain. It increases circulation to the treatment area, resulting in a stronger and faster healing process.

Flex Mitt Mitts are easy to use and portable so you can take them with you wherever you go. It fits all hand sizes and is safe for all skin types. It is also equipped with a timer, so you can not worry about the safety of using this device.

Read about DPL therapy, a unique technology that penetrates deep into the layers of the skin and reduces pain.

Customer reviews

“My shoulders at times get so stiff and cause a lot of pain which makes it difficult to move around freely without feeling stressed out. I have tried different therapies, both medical and alternative, and the cold laser is one of the treatments that has given me quick relief. It was a game-changer for me and allowed me to live without limits!”

— Brian, TX

“This red light therapy device is the best investment I have made for my health. 

The broadhead shape covers more surface area and a flat handle that allows you to lay it against your skin while using, targeting specific areas with lights. Also, the device can be used for various parts of the body and for various painful conditions. For example, it has helped me with both tendonitis and sciatic nerve pain. I am delighted with light therapy and this device in particular.”

— Markl, CO

“The light therapy has helped me get my life back! After being told by two different orthopedic specialists that I needed a complete shoulder replacement due to an old injury I was confused. I’ve had bad results from surgeries and medications in the past, which caused fear because it’s risky. 

After trying out this new treatment, I was pleasantly surprised — it helped improve my range of motion and reduced pain so much. I’m now able to do most ADLS as well as return back to yoga!”

— Laura, AZ

“I have had this device for several years and I’m extremely happy with this purchase. It is an excellent solution for back pain, suitable for temporary relief from arthritis, and even caused me less jaw pain after oral surgery. It can also be used to treat bruises. You can’t go wrong if you want an easy-to-use therapy device at your fingertips.”

— Franck, FL

Side effects of laser therapy

Laser therapy can be an effective alternative to surgery or medication. With proper use and under the supervision of physicians, there are no reported side effects. 

However, now devices can be used at home. And if you do not follow the rules, you may experience the following side effects:

  • Redness and swelling at the area of treatment

Redness and swelling are the most common side effects of laser therapy. They typically last for a few hours or days after treatment.

  • Bruising

Bruising is also a common side effect of laser therapy. It usually goes away within a week or two.

  • Changes in skin color

Laser therapy can cause changes in skin color. The skin may become lighter or darker. These changes are usually temporary and will resolve on their own over time.

  • Infection

There is a small risk of infection with laser therapy. The risk is higher if the skin is broken or there is an open wound.

📌
If you notice any side effects and it lasts for a long time, stop using laser therapy and consult a specialized doctor.
Side effects of laser therapy

Pros and cons of laser therapy for pain relief

Laser therapy has a number of advantages and disadvantages. It is important that every patient understands this so that they know what to expect.

Pros of laser therapy

✅ Non-drug treatment

One of the best benefits of laser therapy is that it does not require medication. Patients do not have to worry about getting a prescription, buying expensive drugs, or the risk of drug interactions. Laser therapy does not pose the risk of addiction or overdose like other pain medications.

✅ Painless procedures

Some patients avoid treatment for health problems because they are worried about the discomfort the therapy might cause. Laser therapy is painless and comfortable.

✅ Can be used at home

Previously, light therapy could only be obtained in specialized clinics. However, over time, many companies began to offer devices that can be used without leaving home. So if you don’t have time to see a doctor or want to be in complete control of your sessions, laser therapy can offer you that.

✅ Versatility

Laser therapy effectively treats many common physical problems such as muscle spasms and sprains, arthritis, neuropathy, neck pain, back pain, etc.

✅ Can be combined with other treatments

Since laser therapy does not require drugs, it can be combined with other treatments such as physical therapy, surgery, or injections for an even greater effect.

Laser Therapy for Pain: Best Devices, Pros & Cons, Safety

Cons of laser therapy

❌ Long-term treatment

Anyone familiar with light therapy knows that one should not expect complete relief of symptoms in just one session. This may require several more procedures.

❌ There are contraindications

Like any medicine, laser therapy has its own contraindications that should be taken into account. It should not be used for suspected cancers or carcinoma, over the thyroid gland, in pregnant women. Also, it should not be used for direct eye exposure, as the laser can cause permanent eye damage.

Summary

Laser therapy is a type of pain relief that uses focused light (red and infrared) to target specific areas of the body. It is one treatment option that has the potential to provide pain relief or reduction, especially for patients who require treatment without surgery or medication.

Laser therapy can be used to relieve pain for a wide variety of conditions, including arthritis, back pain, muscle recovery, and more.

In addition, unlike many drugs, laser therapy does not produce diminishing returns that require an increase in dosage. The analgesic effect remains constant and corresponds to the device.

FAQ

🤔 What is laser therapy?

Laser therapy is a type of medical treatment that uses focused light to treat various conditions. It can be used to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and promote healing.

💡 How does laser therapy work?

When laser light is applied to the skin, it penetrates the tissue and is absorbed by the cells. This absorption of light energy causes a reaction that can lead to various therapeutic benefits, such as pain relief and reduced inflammation.

🔍 What conditions can be treated with laser therapy?

Laser therapy has been shown to be effective in treating a variety of conditions, including musculoskeletal pain, arthritis, nerve pain, wound healing, and more.

❓ Is laser therapy safe?

Laser therapy is generally considered to be safe, however, as with any medical treatment, there are potential risks and side effects that should be discussed with your doctor prior to beginning treatment. The most common side effect of laser therapy is a temporary increase in skin sensitivity. Other potential side effects include itching, redness, and swelling.

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