Introduction to Photobiomodulation (PBM) and PBM Light™

A painful mosquito bite is healed after 5 minutes of PBM therapy.

PhotoBioModulation (PBM) is a universally recognized term for red and infrared light therapy. Also known as Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT), Red Light Therapy (RLT) and cold laser therapy, PBM utilizes red and infrared light to promote healing, reduce inflammation, relieve acute and chronic pain and to repair injured and damaged tissue.

Previously considered “alternative treatment,” PBM has gone mainstream over the past decade as a proven method to enhance well-being, minimize the effects of aging (wrinkle reduction), promote recovery after surgery, improve hair growth, soothe sore muscles, stimulate dry skin and ease winter depression.

Theodore Maiman in 1960 developed the first working laser at Hughes Research Lab in California. He shook up the academic and research world where many clinical applications have since been developed. The first indication of a beneficial Low Level Laser Therapy application was discovered in 1967 by Endre Mester in Hungary who used a ruby laser on mice intended to treat tumors. The treatment was ineffective, but researchers discovered the laser energy was stimulating hair growth and wound healing on the mice. Since then there have been thousands of studies on the topic of low level laser therapy discussing the mechanics of how and why it works and its benefits in various health conditions.

In recent years LED light units have been found to perform just as well, therapeutically, as low level lasers according to Dr. Michael Hamblin. This LED light energy must have comparable red and infrared wavelengths (as well as comparable therapeutic dosage), according to the Arndt-Schulz curve, to effectively bio-stimulate (e.g. healing) and bio-inhibit (e.g. pain relief). These therapeutic effects in recent years have come to be universally recognized as effects of photobiomodulation, abbreviated PBM.

PBM Therapy, or PBM(T) provides a broad range of health benefits stemming from red and infra-red IR light, promoting the synthesis of ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) in mitochondria, the power plant of every cell. When red and infrared light penetrate through skin into muscles, joints, ligaments, bone and nerve tissues, a cascade of physiological action occurs at the cellular level. Physiological functions and processes become highly efficient when exposed to PBM light, resulting in better wound healing, improved tissue regeneration and repairing for damaged or injured tissues.  As LLLT and LED technology has advanced over the past decade, small and affordable handheld devices perfect for home use have come to the consumer market. PBM Light is one such device.

PBM Light ™ and PBM Light + ™ from Oral IQ are compact, portable PBM devices similar in size to a handheld torch flashlight, convenient for on-the-go use. PBM Light™ comes in a silver-colored stainless steel case weighing 210 grams. It has three red LED diodes: 630nm 660nm and infrared 850nm LEDs. For deeper healing, PBM Light +™ may be a better tool. PBM Light +™ comes in a blue- colored anodized aluminum casing that dissipates heat, easily allowing for longer treatment sessions. The unit weighs just 120 grams, much lighter than the original PBM Light™, and contains different LED diodes: a 660nm diode and two infrared diodes, 850nm 940nm. Both units are designed to provide ideal biological effects to the body: red light in the 600nm range (e.g. 630nm, 660nm) penetrates skin to a depth of 10 mm whereas longer infrared wavelengths in the range of 800nms to 1000nms (e.g. 850nm, 940nm) penetrate skin to a depth of 20-100mm. Each unit is rechargeable and conveniently compact (2.6cm x12.05cm).

The beneficial healing wavelengths of  PBM Light™ and PBM Light+  treat a wide range of physiological systems, orofacial areas and joint complexes. From oral inflammation and surgical wounds to mouth sores and even oral mucositis, PBM Light™ reaches throughout the oral cavity perfectly. When deeper treatment is required, like dense muscle layers, joint spaces in TMJ cases (Temporal Mandibular Joint Dysfunction) or osteoarthritis, PBM Light +™ t has the 940nm infrared wavelength LED to penetrate deeply.

Athletes benefit from soothing red light therapy as well. Tennis elbow, runners knee and even sprained ankles can all be treated with PBM Light™ and PBM Light +™ , adapting to all curvature and concave and convex interfaces of joint complexities effortlessly. When pressing PBM Light’s narrow treatment head against a treatment site, fluid and fat tissues easily displace away, allowing deeper, directional penetration to reach desired treatment sites.

PBM Light™ and PBM Light+™ red and infrared light units are FDA approved. Both units are ANSI class 3B treatment devices offering a safe, economical and convenient means to treat a wide range of ailments. They provide fast muscle recovery after strenuous physical activity, treating the body’s trigger points and meridian points, enhancing wellness. PBM Light™ and PBM Light+™ can stop sharp pain from accidental paper cuts and can minimize annoying itchy bug bites. PBM Light™ is a universally essential tool belonging in every household.


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