So what’s up with these new Cold Lasers?

Cold Laser Application for TMJ Pain

Cold Laser Application for TMJ Pain

This is a post in response to a request I have received and some of the blog posts I have read on other sites.  I hope it is informative for you.  As always I welcome any kind of comments or questions.

First of all, “Cold Lasers” are not to be confused with “Cool Lasers”.  “Cool Lasers” are utilized in cosmetic medicine or dermatology to reduce acne scars or wrinkles.  “Cool Lasers” actually generate enough energy so that the water in your skin cells absorbs the laser light. The absorption in turn causes the instantaneous vaporization or destruction of the cell.  There is really nothing “cool” about this laser, in fact this is a thermal tissue reaction, however, the skin is kept “cool” via external cooling mechanisms.

“Cold Lasers” on the other hand are truly “cold” to the touch and their function is purely geared towards biostimulation and healing.  Nowadays, these lasers are often being referred to as “Biostimulatory Lasers”.  Cold Lasers do not create any heat, yet they are very powerful.  To give you an example, surgical lasers for dental surgery generally range between 2 Watts and 7 Watts in output power.  Cold Lasers on the other hand, can have actually 100 Watts or more output power at their tip, yet they will never cut tissue.  So what’s going on here you ask?!?

Well, the difference is the POWER DENSITY at their delivery end.  Surgical lasers have an emitter tip of a few hundred microns in diameter.  Therefore, a few watts of output power are concentrated into a very small diameter at the cutting tip, which yields a very high power density.  A high power density can have enough

Cold Laser Application for Rapid Orthodontics (Invis

Cold Laser Application for Rapid Orthodontics (Invisalign)

 energy to cut tissue.  Cold Lasers on the other hand have an emitter tip of several millimeters to centimeters in diameter.  So, despite their high output power, the power density at the delivery tip is very small and is therefore incapable of creating a thermal effect in tissues, let alone cut them.  In addition, Cold Lasers often “pulse” (they switch on and off) at very high frequencies.  Their power is usually given for the peak output at each of the pulses, so that the average power output is dramatically lower.

So what do Cold Lasers do for you?  Well, in the simplest sense they transfer photon energy into your cells.  Cells use this photon energy to produce their own energy source, which is a molecule called ATP.  Once cells load up on ATP, they have enough energy to regenerate themselves faster and better.  Research has also shown that Cold Laser therapy can reduce inflammation, by blocking the production of certain inflammatory molecules such as interleukins.

Cold Lasers present a growing treatment modality tool in Laser Dentistry.  Their advantage is that there is no danger of over-dosing, there are no adverse effects, and there is above all NO PAIN involved in the procedure.  New uses for Cold Lasers evolve constantly, but we use them currently in the dental field for improved healing after oral surgery procedures, periodontal surgery, faster implant integration for dental implants, TMJ pain, faster orthodontic movement of teeth and desensitization of teeth.


One Response

  1. […] Lastly there is the new field of biostimualtion, which has actually nothing to do with surgery, but can help dramatically in the healing process.  Biostimualtion was already discussed in a previous post underCold Lasers. […]

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