Laser therapy is proven to aid many health and lifestyle conditions. In a new advancement, scientists from the Birmingham University in UK and Beijing Normal University in China conducted research to find the effectiveness of light therapy for cognitive decline.
As per the study published in the journal ‘Science Advances’, laser light therapy can be useful in treating short term memory issues. This is a non-invasive therapy that may improve the working memory of a person. The name of this treatment is transcranial photobiomodulation (tPBM). The right prefrontal cortex of the brain is important for working memory. The tPBM treatment is applied to this area only.
Researchers found that participants who received this treatment showed improvement in their working memory within a few minutes of receiving the treatment. The team also monitored the brain activity during and after receiving the treatment through electroencephalogram (EEG).
There are numerous other studies conducted on laser light therapy on mice. Human trials have also shown that this treatment can improve various cognitive functions including attention, focus, emotions and reaction time. This study is the first one to establish the link between tPBM laser therapy and working memory.
Researchers also noted that people with attention-related disorders like ADHD can also benefit from this treatment. This is an invasive treatment with no side-effects and hence, anyone can receive this treatment.
For this research, the team took 90 participants in different age groups. They were given tPBM treatment of different wavelengths. Some were given longer wavelengths whereas some were given shorter wavelengths. The treatment was given for about 12 minutes. Post therapy, they were asked to remember colors and orientations on the screen. People who received treatment with longer wavelengths showed better results as compared to others. The team also analyzed EEG during the treatment. The research team, therefore, predicted that working memory and cognitive performance improved after this treatment.
The team mentioned that further research is needed to find the exact reason behind why tBPM therapy is good for working memory. They believe that light may stimulate nerve cells present in the prefrontal cortex which improves the efficiency of cells.
Image credits- freepik