Knee injury is common, and anyone can suffer from this at any moment. This injury takes time to heal and can severely disrupt one’s daily life.
There are numerous treatments available to treat knee injuries. Near-infrared light therapy is one of the rapid solutions among them. With this therapy, one can heal from knee injuries significantly faster without the risk of any further damage.
Here, we will discuss how near-infrared light therapy can help in healing knee injuries.
Near-Infrared Therapy for Knee Pain
Knee pain is caused by damage to muscle or bone cells in the knee. Therefore, the more rapidly these damages are healed, the faster one can get rid of knee pain.
Specifically, calibrated light wavelengths are used to deliver healing effects to help people get rid of knee pain. Near-infrared light wavelengths being bigger than the visible light spectrum, they can easily penetrate the upper layer of the skin and reach the muscle and bone cells to trigger rapid healing.
This therapy delivers 810 – 860 nm infrared wavelengths via LED light bulbs. Several studies also corroborate the effectiveness of this therapy.
When a person administers red light therapy, the following incidents start to take place in the body:
- Mitochondria in body cells will absorb energy to improve metabolism
- Improved metabolism will increase blood flow all over the body
- Several hormones and protein production will be boosted
- The circadian rhythm of the body will be adjusted to ensure health benefits
Specific red light wavelengths are often included with near-infrared light therapy to elevate the effectiveness of near-infrared light therapy. Researchers have agreed that 630 – 660 nm red light offers the most health benefits in reducing pain in the human body.
There are also doctors who recommend red light therapy to reduce pain if the problem is generated on the periphery of the body.
How Does Light Therapy Help with Knee Injuries?
As mentioned earlier, light wavelengths reach deeper into the skin and energize the mitochondria in cells. These energized mitochondria improve cell functions and help in repairing damaged ones. Once the damaged cells are repaired, healthy growth can be replicated.
In general circumstances, these cell repairs could take weeks, which is immediately started with the help of red light therapy. In addition to cell repair, elevated metabolism increases blood flow in the human body.
Increased blood flow can transfer oxygen and other helpful nutrients to the injured body area. Therefore, the body gets all the necessary ingredients near the injured area, significantly reducing the injury period.
Moreover, collagen protein and melatonin hormone production are also boosted when red light therapy is administered. Collagen protein makes up almost 80% of the body cells. Therefore, boosted collagen production makes injuries faster.
Melatonin hormone is responsible for our sleep and stress management. When a person is injured, they may experience depression and stress which may influence their sleep cycle. With enhanced melatonin production, these problems can be avoided significantly. Also, red light therapy users can manage pain more effectively due to the melatonin hormone.
On the other hand, near-infrared therapy offers similar benefits with the ability to travel deeper into the skin and reach the muscles and bone cells. Therefore, any musculoskeletal injuries can be addressed with this therapy.
Additionally, near-infrared wavelengths slightly heat up users’ bodies. Therefore, any harmful bacteria can not live in the infected area and worsen the injury. This therapy helps reduce inflammation and infections as well.
Possible Side Effects
LED light therapy is non-invasive and has no lingering side effects. One may experience temporary headaches due to bright light.
If the user’s skin is too light-sensitive, they may experience temporary redness, irritation, and itching after taking red light therapy. However, reducing light brightness and increasing light distance can resolve this problem immediately.
Another drawback of light therapy is that the effects are not long-lasting. Therefore, one will need to use this therapy regularly to keep receiving the therapeutic benefits.
One can easily purchase a light therapy device online and start taking this therapy. However, it is recommended to consult a doctor before taking this therapy to avoid any possible side effects. A medical professional can also recommend the user the best device to purchase to get the best possible therapy results.
Red light and near-infrared light therapy have debuted as therapies not for very long. However, in this short time period, these therapies proved their worth.
Multiple studies have proved that these therapies are effective in treating sports injuries to the knee. More and more health benefits of this therapy are being discovered as time advances.
Make sure to get a good red light therapy device to help yourself with your knee injuries. See if these devices are FDA-approved and offer the correct light wavelengths for ultimate health benefits.
Endurance athlete, professional off-road cyclist, and avid blogger, Tyler Tafelsky participates in long-course multisport and cycling events. Today, Tyler competes in ultra-distance cycling races at the professional level. Since starting Better Triathlete in 2014, he has been the head of content for the site's editorial team. Learn more about Tyler