Sprains and Strains
The tough bands of fibrous tissue that connect two bones together in the joints are called ligaments. A sprain refers to ligaments stretching or tearing and most often occurs in the ankle. While a sprain injures the bands of tissue that connect two bones together, a strain refers to a muscle injury or to the band of tissue that attaches a muscle to a bone. Common signs and symptoms include pain, swelling, bruising and limited mobility in moving the affected joint.
At-home treatment for sprains or strains commonly involves RICE, which means rest, ice, compression, and elevation. More severe sprains may require surgery to repair torn ligaments. However, LLLT has also been proven to be very effective in treating sprains and strains. A study on 47 soccer players with second-degree ankle sprains found that LLLT combined with RICE can reduce edema (swelling caused by excess fluid trapped in the tissues).