BOULDER, Colo. — For the past three years, Robert Wells has used light therapy to manage his physical pain and stress.
Wells is a veteran and also worked in law enforcement. Over the years, he suffered multiple injuries.
“I was shot in the left shoulder, I had a redone ankle. I have a lot of arthritis in my neck and hands,” Wells said.
This pain led him to use VA-prescribed opioids.
“I was on opioids and used them frequently and a little too much. It was changing my habits of behavior,” Wells said. “When I started using [light therapy]not only did I get pain relief, it was amazing, my arthritis started to feel good, my mobility increased.”
A Harvard-affiliated study examining the impact of light therapy found it could help treat traumatic brain injury.
That’s why David Martin decided to open Light Lounge, a light therapy business, in Boulder. He says the potential of light therapy is limitless.
“I truly believe that the greatest attribute of light therapy is to naturally reduce inflammation in the body. Because when the body can heal itself, that’s the best way to heal itself,” Martin said.
He says one of the biggest barriers to light therapy is cost.
“The machines in front of you are $130,000 medical devices,” Martin said. “But what we’re trying to do here at Light Lounge is make it as affordable as the cost of a cappuccino.”
Martin says that three out of five insurance companies cover light therapy. For Wells, the therapy allowed him to stop using painkillers and changed his life.
“I got out and I’m active again,” Wells said. “I’ve been so miserable for so many years. I’m sick of being sick and tired.”
Light therapy is something Wells hopes other veterans or anyone with injuries will consider.