Do you suffer from acute pain or chronic pain in joints or muscles? Are you looking for a non-pharmacological method of managing pain? If so, you may benefit from a drug-free and non-invasive pain relieving technique called Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS). TENS is a simple machine that stimulates your nerves via a low-voltage electrical current through your skin. It is an electronic medical device that stimulates the affected area through electricity.
A non-painful therapy such as TENS is often suggested by physios for pain or shockwave therapy. TENS is a simple procedure that attaches the low-voltage electrode pad to the skin of a patient. Small self-adhesive electrodes are attached over the painful area on the skin. These electrodes are connected via a dual channel until a comfortable amount of electricity is being transmitted. This electricity stimulates the sensory nerves in the affected area and effectively block pain signals to the brain. Here are some benefits you can receive from TENS therapy.
Endorphinic stimulation using TENS results an increase in the production of endorphins. Endorphins are an analgesic substance secreted naturally in the body. The secretion of this substance in the body generates an overall analgesic effect that relieves the pain. The release of brain endorphins induces vasodilation (dilatation of blood vessels which decreases the blood pressure) or a possible inhibition of sympathetic impulses. Several studies have shown an improvement in the rate of wound healing when the electrodes have been applied locally to release endorphins.
TENS is a stimulation device that generates electrical pulses which activates the nerves that are a little larger and faster than other nerve fibers used to convey pain. A prickling message is sent to the brain via the spinal cord which masks the pain during the stimulation. According to gate-control theory, TENS may affect or inhibit the transmission of painful information through the nerve fibres and up to the brain where it is processed.
It is a unique, highly effective treatment option for individuals suffering from chronic musculoskeletal pain condition. The effectiveness of TENS treatment in chronic pain produces a positive analgesic outcome. TENS is a stand-alone treatment for severe to moderate pain. Apart from low back pain, knee, neck and shoulder pain, it is effective in conditions s such as:
- Shin splints
- Sports injuries
- Neuropathic pain
TENS is safe for children, adults, and seniors. However, TENS should be used with caution in some conditions like people with pacemakers, pregnant women, and those allergic to electrodes or gels used during the treatment. Make sure to visit a physio for proper guidance regarding the treatment and its uses.
At Emerald Hills Physio, our team is proud to have 50 years of experience in non-surgical and orthopedic pain management strategies. If you’d like to learn more about the treatments we offer, including TENS and shockwave therapy, then call our clinic today to schedule an appointment. Located in Edmonton, we have experienced physical therapists to take care of you!