Helping Athletes Heal Faster with MLS Laser Therapy
It’s true: there’s no such thing as a good time for an injury. Nobody enjoys getting hurt.
But for athletes, runners, dancers, and other active individuals, a poorly timed injury can be devastating. Imagine your entire senior year wiped out after an injury in the first week, or having to back out of a marathon you spent half a year training for at the last minute.
Even something like persistent heel pain can hold you back in practice and keep you from reaching your potential or playing as long as you want. And over time, constant inflammation from injuries that never fully heal can lead to early-onset arthritis, joint instability, and chronic pain.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a pro, a student athlete, or a weekend warrior. It doesn’t matter if you have teammates relying on you, or you just want to enjoy a friendly game with friends or a peaceful run by yourself. All you want is to be able to get back on the field (or trail, or ice, or court) as quickly and safely as possible.
We understand. And that’s why we’re so pleased to be able to offer MLS laser therapy to our patients. Although this advanced treatment can be highly effective for all sufferers of musculoskeletal pain, it’s extremely popular with athletes and active people looking to make the fastest possible recovery from an injury.
But before we get into that, let’s start with some background.
How Chronic Sports Injuries Damage Your Cells
Here’s something you may or may not realize about exercise.
When you push your body hard during training or a game, you’re actually doing damage to the cells of your muscles and connective tissues on a microscopic level.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing! In fact, it’s a necessary component of getting stronger. The damaged cells release chemicals that trigger a brief inflammatory response, which signals to the body that it’s time to regenerate and repair. During your rest period after your workout, the body rebuilds itself stronger and more adaptable than it was before.
But when the forces your soft tissues must bear are more intense or more frequent than they are equipped to deal with, and you don’t give yourself enough time to rest between workouts, those muscles and tendons stay inflamed all the time, and the body has a harder and harder time repairing the damage.
Over time, chronic inflammation even stops responding all that well to rest. It also leaves those muscles and connective tissues weaker and more susceptible to sprains, ruptures, and other severe traumas. It can even cause joint degeneration and an onset of instability and arthritic pain.
Plus, it’s just plain painful—sometimes severely so.
How Laser Therapy Works
After an injury, your body may need some “help” repairing the damage quickly, especially if it’s a chronic injury that’s been nagging at you for a long time.
This is one of the main things that laser therapy is designed to do. Lasers, as you are probably aware, are simply highly focused beams of amplified light. And light, as you may also recall from high school physics, is a form of energy. And energy is something your damaged cells are going to need a lot of.
To be more specific, the photons emitted by the laser system stimulate a photochemical reaction in the damaged cells of your injured tissues. This triggers a “cascade” of healing processes, including enzyme production, accelerated cellular metabolism, lymph drainage, and even collagen production—which reduces the formation of scar tissue.
MLS laser therapy specifically takes it even a step further from other forms of low-level light therapy that have been around for a couple of decades. The system actually uses two synchronized lasers simultaneously; one is primarily focused on fighting inflammation and healing tissue, while the other is primarily focused on relieving physical pain. Because of the way the two lasers are synchronized, they actually reinforce one another—meaning you get even better results than you would by using each separately.
What Kind of Results Can I Expect?
It would be unfair to call MLS laser a “cure all” for any kind of sports injury. Results do vary, and MLS laser therapy will likely be only one component of your overall treatment plan. You will still need to do your stretches and rehab, and take care to prevent recurrence by making smart choices about your training routine and gear.
However, we truly have witnessed incredible results when using this treatment technology—especially on dedicated athletes who are committed to their rehab plan. It’s not unusual to see athletes who incorporate MLS laser therapy cut their overall recovery time by 30 to 50 percent—which in many cases could be the difference between “out for the season” and “back well before the playoffs.”
Furthermore, if you’ve been dealing with a nagging injury that just won’t go away for months or even years, a few sessions of laser therapy might be the “kick start” your body needs to finally heal. It may even keep you out of surgery.
A typical MLS treatment course involves a series of 6-10 brief (~10 minutes) therapy sessions at our office, spread out over the course of a couple of weeks to a couple of months. Many athletes start to notice significant improvement after just a single session—and because the effects of treatment are cumulative, results continue to get better and better over the full treatment course.
There’s more good news. Therapy is completely painless (no anesthesia required!), and there are no known side effects even after years of clinical trials and millions of sessions.
Get Back in the Game!
At Burlington County Foot & Ankle Associates, we love working with active patients dedicated to their recovery. And we’ll do everything in our power to get you back in the game quickly, while keeping you as active and engaged as possible along the way.
If your game is suffering due to a recent injury or nagging pain, MLS laser therapy may be just what you need. So don’t wait for the pain to get even worse before you do something about it! Give us a call today at (609) 714-0052 to schedule an appointment, or contact us online and someone with our office will connect with you shortly.