The Best Cold Lasers For Cold Laser Therapy: TerraQuant
Our goal at ColdLasers.Org is to sell the best cold lasers and to present unbiased information about cold laser therapies. In addition to being the fastest growing TerraQuant cold laser and Thor low level laser source, this site includes information about different cold laser technologies and different style of cold laser therapy. The most common uses for cold lasers (sometimes called low level lasers) are:
- Accelerating the healing of damaged tissue
- Inflammation reduction
- Pain reduction
In addition to these therapies, cold lasers are used for dental surgery, hair growth, smoking-cessation therapy, laser toenail fungus removal and many other applications. Because low level lasers allow practices to safely control and focus the energy from the laser to deep inside the body, they are constantly being used in new healing applications.
In addition to selling some of the best cold lasers on the market, this site will present information about different types of lasers and the specifications of different professional grade lasers (including Terraquant, Thor, Apollo, Erchonia, VetroLaser, K-Laser and Microlight ML830). We do not cover product like the Scalar Wave, Quantum-wave and zero point (laser pointer). Comparing cold laser can be a challenge since every manufacturer used different wavelengths, power levels, emitter technologies and treatment systems. Our goal is to help you find the best solution for your needs, even if it is another brand of lasers.
Cold laser light is:
- Monochromatic (A single wavelength in the 635 to 970 nm range)
- Coherent (Traveling in a straight non-diverging line)
- Has a wavelength in red portion of the electromagnetic spectrum
- Polarized (Concentrating it energy as a defined spot)
- Low enough power level there is little risk of heating tissue (powers range from 10 continuous to 50,000 pulsed milliwatts)
Unlike high-power medical lasers, which are widely used to cut and burn tissue, Low Level Lasers (LLLs) or cold lasers penetrates the surface of the skin with little or no heating effect and no potential tissue damage. The energy is directed deep into treatment area stimulating the body's cells which convert the light energy into chemical energy to promote natural healing.
In most cases, Cold Laser Therapy is considered an alternative therapy like Acupuncture, chiropractic and physical therapy because it does not require expensive surgeries or a life-long dependency on drugs. Cold Lasers user laser energy to help the body heal itself. Traditional medicine practitioners have supported treatment options like Ultrasound And Tens for years but they are slow to pick up cold lasers as a healing option. These treatment have provided relief for many patients over the years and may be used in combination with cold laser treatment for even better results.
Currently, there are over 25 different cold lasers or LLLs that have been cleared by the FDA for various types of treatments. Cold laser have been in use around the world for over 30 years and have been in use in the US for over 10 years, mostly in the veterinary field. Low level laser therapy or soft laser therapy has been proven completely safe in over 3000 worldwide studies.
The power level of medical grade cold lasers ranges from 10 milliwatts to 50,000 milliwatts. The higher power level are only available for laser with pulse technology. This energy can be created using one or an array of laser sources. An array of lasers allows a wider treatment area. Since finding the optimum treatment spot deep inside the tissue is somewhat of an "educated guess", it can be very useful to cover a larger area with an array. This increased the probability of getting the photons to the problem area and larger arrays also also help increase the energy in the area surrounding the main target area. Emitters that use a combination of different wavelength source also have a better chance of treating tissue at different depths.
The average cold laser therapy session cost from 30 to 60 dollars. The average medical grade laser costs from $3500 - $15,000. Because cold lasers increase ATP production and blood flow in the treated area, activating the bodies natural healing processes, cold lasers can be used for:
- Cervical (neck pain) healing
- Lumbar (low back pain) healing
- (Wrist pain and injuries (Carpal Tunnel)
- Elbow and joint pain and injuries
- Lower extremities pain
- Foot and ankle pain
- Joint pain and Knee injuries
- Treatment after dental surgery
- Cosmetic Enhancement
- Hair Growth
- Smoking Cessation
There are 2 basic styles for treatment using cold lasers, pinpoint treatments (laserpuncture) and broad coverage of a damaged area. Each treatment style has a different goal that requires different equipment.
Laser Puncture Therapy
In a Laser Puncture treatment, the cold laser is used similar to acupuncture or acupressure to trigger a reaction from the body by stimulating an acupoint. In this case, a probe set or focused low level laser is used to concentrate all the energy from the cold laser into a very small area. Cold lasers are often compared to "acupuncture with a laser beams". In LLL laserpuncture treatments, the laser beam is use to trigger the body's acupoints without the fear or pain of needles. The energy from the laser may penetrate as deep as 5 inches into the body based on the setup of the laser.
Broad Treatment Therapy
In many cases, a practitioner may not be targeting a trigger point, they will choose to use a cold laser to energize a larger area of the body. In this case, a cold laser with a broad focus (larger than the size of a dime) and the correct wavelength are used to penetrate the deep tissue with photons to accelerate natural healing in a large area. These large emitter can cover areas up to 4.6 inches. The larger treatment area increase the chances of stimulating the "hotspots" that need healing the most. Larger Emitters also reduce the treatment time.
Cold Laser Comparisons
There are several key factor to evaluate when choosing a cold laser. These include:
- Wavelength - The wavelength controls the depth of the penetration of the laser photons. Some wavelengths (like violet) are absorbed in the top layers of the skin so they can not generate any significant change in deep tissue and joints.
- Power - Since the power of a laser usually remains constant during a treatment, the energy of the light is equal to the power in watts multiplied by the time in seconds during which the light is emitted. For a continuous laser, this is simply watts times treatment duration. For a pulsed laser, the calculation is watts x duty cycle x treatment time. A laser with more power (measured in watts) or a higher duty cycle (measured in duty cycle) can deliver the more energy (measured in joules) in less time. Joules is the best way to compare pulsed and non-pulsed laser for their ability to direct energy into the deep tissue and initiate healing. The class of the laser is largely controlled by the power level.
- Coverage Area - The larger the coverage area, the faster and more thorough the treatment. A larger coverage area also means that the laser is more likely to hit a trigger spot or damaged area.
At the most basic level, cold lasers use a variety of different treatment plans to stimulate natural healing. The goal of cold laser therapy is to deliver light energy units (in photons) to cells that need healing. Photons are absorbed by the cells, stimulating the mitochondria to accelerate production of ATP. An ATP increase in the cell helps accelerate the bodies healing process by transforming cells from a state of damage to a stable, healthy state.
Other Names for Cold Lasers
There is some confusion about what to call the equipment that is described on this site. Probably the most accurate is photobiomodulation (or PBM) equipment but this name doesn't seem to stick with the average person. Some prefer to call the products low-level lasers or soft lasers. The goal of these name is to distinguish these lasers from the medical lasers that are used to cut and burn tissue. In some publications, you may see the abbreviation LLLT for Low Level Laser Therapy. Many of the cold lasers actually warm the skin during therapy so the name cold laser is not a totally accurate description either. Regardless of what you call it, cold lasers and low level lasers do generate some minor heating, they are not soft and they are designed to use photobiomodulation to promote healing.
Professionals And Home Use
Cold Laser are typically sold to practitioners but there are no legal limitations for the use of cold lasers in the home. When selecting a product for home use, simplicity of operation can be the critical factor. Products like the Thor cold lasers are designed for professionals while products like the TQ Solo and TerraQuant Pro are great for both home and professional use.
Classes of Cold Lasers
All lasers, hot and cold, are given a classification according to the international specification; IEC 60825. The more dangerous the laser, the higher the classification. The most dangerous cold lasers are class IV (4) lasers and the safest are class I (1). Power level is a key factor in the application of cold laser therapy to deep tissue but this does mean that higher class lasers are better, it just means they are more dangerous. Most lasers use a diffused beam with a treatment area larger than a pencil eraser and not a focused beam the size a pencil lead. By spreading the energy over a larger area, the product becomes easier to use for treating medium and large areas of damage. They also become safer and their classification is lower.
As just discussed, larger laser beams are safer AND more easier to use. To illustrate the effectiveness issue, lets look at it another way. If you have a big bruise (damaged tissue) the size of your hip or elbow and you needed to "color in" with ink, would you want to use a ball point pen or a big fat marker? When you are treating damaged tissue, you are essentially "coloring in" the tissue with light. In many cases, you might not even know where the exact area that needs treatment the most. By using a larger emitter, you increase the odds that you will radiate the critical spot. With the exception of trigger point therapy, the larger the cold laser beam the better.
Some cold laser therapies qualify for insurance reimbursement using the following Cold Lasers CPT codes.
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