The Alternative Medicine Industry
Alternative medicine is a multi-billion dollar business with $ 43 billion being spent by American consumers every year. The therapies considered as alternative are a diverse bag. Some are considered as having the therapeutic properties, while many are of doubtful effectiveness and some are simply bizarre. I have deal with acupuncture as an aid to smoking cessation in an article entitled “I am going to take a critical look at laser therapy for stopping smoking.”
Medical uses of Laser Light
In laser treatment for quitting smoking a pulse of low energy light is aimed at various points on the skin. It is often compared to acupuncture and the laser light is directed at various acupuncture pressure points. Practitioners of laser treatment claim that this causes the release of endorphins in the body. Endorphins are a natural opiate and are typically released during times of physical stress or trauma. They are also released when we are engaged in pleasurable activities, such as sex. Conventional laser therapy is a legitimate medical procedure used to treat a variety of conditions. However, usually medical laser therapy differs from laser treatment for quitting smoking in one very important way. The laser light is high energy and delivers a concentrated beam of light to a small area of the body being treated. The impact of this high energy light can be used to cauterize blood vessels in the eye or destroy cancer cells in the skin. Lasers can also be used as a 'light scalpel' for surgical procedures. This is just a few of the medical uses of high energy lasers. Low energy lasers have been used to treat acute pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis and other chronic joint disorders.
Is Laser Treatment for Quitting Smoking Legitimate?
So, is laser treatment for quitting smoking effective? A number of clinical trials have been conducted looking into this question. Their concluding: There is no evidence that low energy laser light is an effective smoking cessation aid. If it as any effect at all it is due to its action as a placebo. Even if could have shown that laser therapy results in endorphin release it is difficult to see how this would stop nicotine cravings. At best it would cause a feeling of well being. The same effect could have been achieved by strenuous physical exercise.
Go For a Run Instead
I am under no illusions about laser treatment for quitting smoking- it is a total sham and has no basis as a therapy in the modern medical context. Not surprising, this treatment does not come cheap. Typically, laser treatment for quitting smoking will cost about US $ 350. Now that's what I call expensive snake oil! As is often the case with fringe treatments for smoking cessation, the quoted quant rates are outrageously high. And this is the case with laser treatment for quitting smoking. I have seen quoted quit rates for laser treatment for quitting smoking in excess of 90%. This is clearly ridiculous as no stop smoking program or aid, even those of proven effectiveness, will ever achieve anything like this success rate. The old adage: 'if it looks to be good to be true, then it probably is' definitely applies to laser treatment for quitting smoking. If you are serious about stopping smoking and have money to spend you would be well advised to spend it on a proven and effective smoking cessation product or program.
For sensible help and advice about quitting smoking visit: Tips To Help Stop Smoking .