Red Light Therapy and Arthritis
Are you facing a difficult time walking and carrying out daily life chores due to inflamed and painful joints? Does arthritic joint pain doesn’t seem to ward off? Herein, we are going to shed some light on how red light therapy can be a cure for arthritis. But first, let’s understand what arthritis is.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is an inflammatory condition that affects the joints of the human body. In this condition, the joints undergo swelling, tenderness, and pain. Arthritis is common in females as compared to males, especially after middle age. The health status of joints deteriorates as the age of patients increases. The most common symptoms of arthritis, pain, stiffness and swelling, redness, and decreased range of motion. Usually, arthritis runs in the family and passes from one generation to another. Besides genetics, obesity critically puts an individual under the risk of developing arthritis. The pathology of arthritis divides it into two types:
2. Rheumatoid arthritis
Treatment of Arthritis
The treatment for this condition usually involves painkillers, NSAIDs, counterirritants, DMARDs, and corticosteroids. The patients are expected to continue the heavy dosage of these medicines for quite a long time, most probably life-long. These drugs have many side effects as well, which further deteriorate other areas of patient’s health. As soon as the medicines are quit, pain, stiffness, redness, decrease in range of motion, and swelling not only return but also aggravate. This proves that medicines are not the most reliable solution for arthritis. Since it is a painful condition, it is necessary to give it adequate attention.
Red light therapy shows remarkable results in patients of arthritis. This is a drug-free, natural and non-invasive therapy for inflammation of joints. This therapy includes the use of devices that give off concentrated but safe wavelengths of natural light. Once the wavelengths of natural light fall on the cells of the skin, it minimizes oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is the accumulation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and their reaction with the tissues and joints, causing harm to the body system. However, Red Light Therapy stops oxidative stress in the concerned areas, i.e., joints to provide relief.
Moreover, this therapy stimulates the body to produce cellular energy in the form of Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP). We know that cells make up the human body. Each cell has a powerhouse. This powerhouse is called mitochondria. Red Light Therapy stimulates the production of energy in these powerhouses. In arthritis, when red light enters mitochondria, the process of ATP formation begins. Sufficient ATP production empowers the body to accelerate the healing ability, tissue regeneration, and reduce joint pain and inflammation.
How does it work?
Red Light Therapy exclusively involves mitochondrial activity. It increases the down-regulation of the genes that take part in inflammation and up-regulation of those genes that produce energy. This way, the red light therapy stimulates the body to develop better repairing and regenerating ability. When the body upgrades its cellular repair and regeneration status, ultimately, inflammation subsides. Red light enters the tissues, tendons, and cartilages surrounding joints to minimize the inflammation and promote healing.
Furthermore, arthritis gravely damages the cartilage in joints. Cartilage cushions the joint and prevents friction. Red light favors the building up of collagen, which is the 60% composition of cartilage. Lastly, the red light increases blood flow, hence nutrient flow, towards the affected joints to accelerate the healing of the painful joints.
Red light therapy is an effective therapy for patients of arthritis. Since medications are partly effective and produce unanticipated side effects, red light therapy is one of the safest alternative therapeutic options for arthritis treatment.
1. Anonymous. (2019). Arthritis. Mayoclinic. Retrieved from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/arthritis/symptoms-causes/syc-20350772#:~:text=Arthritis%20is%20the%20swelling%20and,are%20osteoarthritis%20and%20rheumatoid%20arthritis
2. Nelson, S. Red and Near Infrared Light Can Help to Reduce Joint Pain and Alleviate Arthritis. Joovv. Retrieved from: https://joovv.com/blogs/joovv-blog/red-near-infrared-light-proven-reduce-joint-pain-alleviate-arthritis#:~:text=Bottom%20Line%3A%20Red%20Light%20Therapy,%2C%20inflammation%2C%20and%20related%20symptoms
3. Anonymous. (2020). Ease Arthritis Pain and Inflammation with Red Light Therapy. Retrieved from: https://platinumtherapylights.com/blogs/news/red-light-therapy-for-arthritis