Electrotherapy and TENS

Electrotherapy and Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) is the electrical stimulation of the body in which currents are passed through the body to stimulate nerves and muscles, especially in treatments of various forms of paralysis.

Electrotherapy uses a low voltage electrical current to activate the muscles and nerves, which improves blood flow to the area. Once the blood flow has been increased, the muscles begin to receive the oxygen carrying red blood cells.

The increased blood flow can increase recovery speed and aid the removal of lactic acid. Electrotherapy is also and effective method to reduce muscle wastage post injury.

Electric stimulation devices such as Compex incorporate some of the most advanced technology in the electrical muscle stimulation field. They have a wide range of applications designed to aid injury, recovery and facilitate training.

Compex muscle stimulators have several pre-set programmes for easy use. They can automatically judge the correct settings based on your muscle response, and then run through a complete cycle.

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a method of providing pain relief by applying electrical current to the affected are using several electrodes which can be fixed to the skin.

How does TENS work?

When tissue is damaged the pain nerve fibres in the damaged area become irritated and more sensitive, leading to a heightened perception of pain. Also, in the region, there are also mechanoreceptors which when stimulated can override the pain impulses in the area.

Application of TENS

All injuries will be different meaning the use of the TENS machines will be different for each individual.

There are usually three main variable settings on a TENS machine.

  1. Frequency
  2. Intensity
  3. Pulse Width

Customers are encouraged follow the instructions provided with the machine or seek professional advice before using their TENS machine.

Does TENS hurt?

TENS machines should not cause users discomfort, but when being used a slight tingling feeling is expected. There are also several symptoms which may indicate the TENS therapy is harmful.

  • If the area of skin has abnormal sensation.
  • If the user suffers from seizures or epilepsy, professional advice is required.
  • Similarly, if the user is pregnant, professional advice is required.

Finally, TENS should not be applied to the chest or neck of a user or also not be used if:

  • Users have an allergic reaction to the electrodes, gel or strapping.
  • Users have a skin condition such as eczema.
  • Users have open wounds in the injured area.
  • Users have circulatory problems.
  • Users have a pacemaker.

Be sure to shop our range of Electric Stimulation devices and TENS machines here.

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