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The Beginning

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”

Sourcing the LED strip for your Eliza

I’ve just had a query about sourcing 670nm LED strip.

I have found it hard to get 670nm of late, so in recent Eliza-making, I’ve resorted to any old red LED strip. The main thing is to look for the one with the darkest red colour. They are available on eBay and are not at all expensive.

While 670nm is currently regarded as the bees knees, other wavelengths are also effective, including down to 630nm which is is getting towards an orange colour.

So don’t get hung up on finding exactly 670nm LED strip.

Just find the darkest red LED strip you can get, and use that.

Record keeping

I had a great query this morning about what baseline information to collect before you start using an Eliza. I have an excel spreadsheet which is basic, but a useful start, and it allows you to add comments over time. I will post it separately.

There are three very important things you can do to track any changes.

Before you start using the lights, do the following.

1. Handwriting

Find a notepad with lined pages, and keep this only for your handwriting samples.Write a long sentence or two in your normal handwriting. Write something that you are happy to write at regular intervals.

2. Video clip of you walking

A short video clip, showing you walking towards the camera, away from the camera and from side to side.

3. Video clip of you talking

Again, only a short clip is needed.

Can you schedule yourself to repeat these three things every month?

I know it is a pain and it is embarrassing to have videos of yourself being done, but the monthly video clips will help show subtle changes in:

  • Gait
  • Posture
  • Walking fluency
  • Facial animation
  • Articulation of words
  • Voice quality

The monthly writing samples will show if there is any change in your hand use, especially if you have the symptoms in your writing hand. Prof John has a neat piece of software that can analyse handwriting changes over time.

These kinds of changes are really hard to pick on a day to day basis and they often only become evident if you keep these kinds of records.

If you are willing to share your records with Prof John, please let me know. At this stage all information is important as we are still at the beginning of understanding. Hearing of your experience with lights and would be hugely valuable.

Weekend Australian article

An article in the Weekend Australian newspaper about red light and Parkinson’s Disease covers some of the people involved in the experiences described in this blog.

The article mentioned a home-made light hat. The instructions for  making a one-wavelength version of the hat (aka Eliza) have been posted.

Instructions for a two-wavelength version of the light hat are in progress.

PS. If the link to the article takes you to a paywall, try searching for it using Google, using the search term ‘Suvi Weekend Australian’. I was able to access the full article this way.

The Eliza Instructions finally…..

Here are the instructions for making a one wavelength Eliza.

Download instructions for a 1-wavelength Eliza

Download the things you will need for your DIY Eliza.

Making an Eliza isn’t difficult, but it is a fiddly process and takes quite a few hours.

Be brave and give it a go.

Let me know if there are things that need to be clarified.

I’d love to see photos of your Eliza.

Instructions for the one wavelength Eliza

I’ll be posting the instructions for the one wavelength Eliza later today. It has taken me a lot more time than expected to put in all the details.

You will need a workplace with good light and electricity. You will also need patience and a sense of humour.

In preparation, here is the list of things you will need.

Red lights and disease-seeking missiles

Journal Article: Targeting the body to protect the brain: introducing neuroprotection with remotely-applied near infrared light.  Link

This research article was published on 10 March 2015 in the journal, Neural Regeneration Research, by Daniel Johnstone, John Mitrofanis and Jonathan Stone, all from the University of Sydney.

Here’s a summary.

While the causes of many diseases are not known, the diseased cells all do have systems to repair themselves. Research into the use of red and near infrared light on damaged cells has shown that the light can stimulate these cells into starting the repair processes.

The light exposure does not have to be heavy duty. LEDs work just as well as lasers.
Continue reading “Red lights and disease-seeking missiles”