The photonic stimulator derives its name from using photonic, or light, emission to trigger, or stimulate, a biological response. Photonic Stimulation utilizes diffuse infrared light for the stimulation of certain biological responses, some of which may be fairly deep (several centimeters) into tissue. It turns out that certain wavelengths of light pass more readily through human and animal tissue than others. Hemoglobin, water and lipids each absorb and scatter light to different degrees at different frequencies, where each light frequency is typically expressed by the corresponding wavelength. Because of this, there is a "sweet spot" in the spectrum which provides more optimum penetration of the light, or photonic, energy. The DavaRay NanoBeam 940 infrared therapy device, or photonic stimulator, is designed to take advantage of this sweet spot in the Near Infrared, or NIR, portion of the spectrum. This region is below the frequency (longer wavelength) of light to which our eyes are sensitive, so we can see very little of the energy emitted at these wavelengths. Therefore, just like ultraviolet light, infrared is an "invisible light". Unlike ultraviolet, which is largely blocked by the top layers of skin, NIR penetrates deep into the tissue to reach nerve endings and the endothelial linings of the capillaries.
Similar light therapies (low intensity laser, LLLT) have been in use since the 1960s, especially throughout Europe, and there are now well over 100 published studies available in the literature. The FDA has now approved the NanoBeam 940 for use by healthcare professionals in the United States for the temporary relief of pain in muscles and joints, for muscle spasms and arthritis pain, for relieving stiffness, to promote the relaxation of muscle tissue and to temporarily increase local blood circulation where heat may be indicated.
It is among the most effective devices available.
We have come to believe through observation that the infrared light has a balancing effect on the autonomic nervous system, whose nerve fibers are especially rich in the walls of blood vessels and micro-capillaries. Studies have shown that Nitric Oxide is released into the blood stream, causing the walls of the micro-capillaries to relax and expand, permitting increased blood flow, or perfusion. The resultant temporary reduction in inflammation can be observed, and certainly felt. It is now recognized that Nitric Oxide is a key parasympathetic cytokine, that is it reduces inflammation.
Sympathetic nerves are also connected via the spinal column to the brain. As anyone who has experienced a cold can attest, inflammation impacts brain function and mood. Hyperactivation of the sympathetic nerves, as well as hyperproduction of proinflammatory cytokines (inflammation), has been observed by clinicians to have deleterious effects on brain function. We know that Myofascial pain and RSD pain are transmitted through the body by the sympathetic nervous system. Of course, if we are experiencing less pain on a conscious level, we tend to be much less irritable and more energetic. We can naturally think more clearly and concentrate better. Better mobility also naturally gives rise to better mood. The unconscious effects are less well understood, but have an undeniable, and often immediate, impact.
As with many devices and modalities recently put into practice (as well as some much older ones), more research is needed to more completely understand the mechanisms of action by which the photonic stimulator accomplishes what it does. We can certainly benefit by more fully understanding the often complex mechanisms by which the human body regulates itself, and the many roles of both the central and autonomic nervous systems in that process. In the meantime, the photonic stimulator, or infrared therapy device, particularly the DavaRay NanoBeam 940, has been used extensively in Sports Medicine Clinics and by the United States Olympic Teams for tissue injuries in it's athletes, as well by Physical Therapy Clinics and Neurofeedback offices.
For NanoBeam 940 specifications, see DavaRay NanoBeam
Mount Dora, FL, near Orlando