Constant knee pain makes it hard to be active, so in mid 2015, I did a lot of sitting and reading. One of the books was Norman Doidge’s The Brain’s Way of Healing.
Chapter 4 covered the effect of red and near infrared light on the brain and spinal cord, and there were some remarkable stories told. In passing, Doidge mentioned the positive effect of red and near infrared light on arthritic joints and damaged tendons.
I went hunting on Google Scholar and found some medical journal articles that Continue reading “The Beginning”
A few people have asked how long a light hat should be worn.
A previous post about the Goldilocks Effect is really important to read, as it describes the research on the odd effect of too much red light.
More red light is not better – it can make things worse. Neurones are finicky fellows and we must respect this.
So how long should you wear an Eliza light hat, or any kind of red/near infrared light on the head? As everyone’s light hat is different, it is impossible to give absolutely firm advice. But based on what I’ve observed over the time of making many and varied light hats, I’d suggest the following considerations.
This photo is one of many remarkable images produced by neuroscience researchers at the University of Queensland. More.
I’ve had a number of people tell me that conversations with their GP or specialist about red and near infrared lights haven’t gone well. One chap took his newly-made Eliza to show his neurologist, who roared with laughter and said that it would be very handy at Christmas.
I remember my reaction when patients brought in newspaper clippings about the latest and greatest cure for something – I’d keep a smile on my face and inwardly groan.
If you are getting less than supportive noises from your doctors, don’t get cranky with them, because they are trying to protect you. There are lots of charlatans and snake oil merchants out there, and people with chronic diseases are easy targets. They are worried that you and your family are going to be taken in by costly rubbish. If you read about the beginnings of my learning about red lights, here, you’ll see that I was also very skeptical.
So what can you do?
Continue reading “How to help your doctor”
This is a wonderful article: Turning on the lights…
A few people have asked to be put into contact with others making Elizas and Daffodils at home. I’m told that a forum is just the thing to allow this to happen.
So the redlightsonthebrain forum has been set up. It is set up as a free site, so apologies in advance for any advertisements.
I’m the Admin, but I’m a novice forum-user, so anything could happen….oh well, we can only give it a try. If it is a disaster, it can be removed from existence.
Life is full of revelations. In my case, this revelation is a slow realisation of the blatantly obvious.
I’ve been fretting over the instructions for a two-wavelength Eliza. These instructions will involve soldering and flash stuff like that. It’s OK for those who solder for pleasure, and who are at one with the finer points of electrical connections, but most Eliza-makers are happy to avoid unnecessary complications.
So, applying the KISS (keep it simple, stupid), I offer this pronouncement:
Make two Elizas (or Daffodils), one with the ~670nm LED strip and the other with a longer wavelength. While 810nm is the fashionable one, it has been difficult to get, whereas 850nm is much easier to find.
Then use the two light hats in sequence, one immediately following the other. I tend to use the ~670nm first, then the longer wavelength second. I’m not sure that it makes much difference which goes first, as long as one quickly follows the other.
I’ve had a few queries about using high powered LEDs, the logic being that if low powered LED strips can improve the health of neurons, then lots of low powered LEDs or high powered LEDs will do a better job. If only it were that simple…
Prof John Mitrofanis and others have shown very clearly that there is a Goldilocks Effect. They use a more scientific term, but it is the same thing.
1. Too little red/near-infrared light doesn’t do very much at all.
2. Too much red/near-infrared light can cause problems for the neurons.
3. The just-right amount of red/near-infrared light is perfect.
Prof John and his team have been able to define the “just-right” dose at the neuronal level in mice. But we have no such knowledge for humans. So we have to be cautious. Very cautious.
So, please don’t use high powered LEDs. Start at a low level of red light exposure, as we have done.
Remember that we are at the very beginning of understanding of trans-cranial lights. There continues to be wonderful research work being done and as it appears, I’ll let you know if and how this changes the approach to DIY light hats.
What I do know at this stage is: Less Is More.