How can light help prevent cognitive decline?
At Marama, we have a healthy obsession with your brain. If you frequently feel unfocused, foggy, forgetful, or your brain simply doesn’t feel like it’s functioning the way it did when you were younger, make sure you subscribe to our email list. We’ll be sharing a series of educational articles about optimizing brain health and preventing or reversing cognitive decline.
Today we’re discussing photobiomodulation, or using light to help optimize brain function.
What is photobiomodulation?
There are many factors involved in cognitive issues. One is literally a lack of energy — the brain’s ability to produce or use energy to work optimally. There is a safe way to stimulate the brain to utilize the energy you need to think clearly.
Stimulating the brain with near infrared (NIR) light revitalizes mitochondria, increases brain activity, and improves blood flow to the brain. This is photobiomodulation (PBM). Mitochondria are the structures in every cell in the body that produce the cellular fuel known as ATP. As we age, our mitochondria can slow down and become less efficient in producing ATP. But luckily, your mitochondria are able to absorb near infrared light and use it to boost the process of ATP production. Research is also showing that NIR stimulation can trigger more gene transcription and cellular repair mechanisms. This process also stimulates the release of nitric oxide (NO) which has a beneficial side effect of helping to dilate blood vessels and improve blood circulation.
Dementia, Alzheimer’s, brain injuries, and more
Vielight is a near infrared photobiomodulation device we use at Marama. It produces frequencies designed to help your mitochondria. This device is used for patients with dementia, Alzheimer’s, traumatic brain injuries, and anyone wanting to optimize their cognitive function. We use this with our Marama residents daily as part of our protocol. The research and safety of red light therapy has been well described by researchers including Dr. Michael Hamblin, PhD at Harvard. You can see an index of relevant studies here on the Vielight website: https://www.vielight.com/research/ We believe the science and the results make it a worthy addition to the daily routine at Marama for improvement of memory and mental fitness.
How to use a NIR device
To use the Vielight, you place it on the user’s head, and attach a light clip onto the nose. It has transcranial and intranasal NIR lights, which creates a holistic photobiomodulation effect — meaning the light surrounds the brain for optimal effect. Turn the Vielight on while you are relaxing or while doing daily activities and allow the device to do its work.
At Marama, we strive to offer the most beneficial technology currently available to our residents for memory care, cognitive function, and overall health. Our vision is a world without dementia, and we strive daily to make this vision a reality.