What is a Tens Machine

By Med-Fit UK Content Team  .  Last Updated Saturday, 10th September 2022

TENS – Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation are devices that are specifically designed to help relieve pain through the use of mild electrical currents. The electrical current created by a Tens Machine is passed through the body using TENS electrodes (sticky pads) that are attached to the skin.

The electrodes are connected to the Tens machine via wires, or some tens units come with wireless/bluetooth electrodes.
Once the electrodes are placed on your skin in the right areas (the area of treatment) and the Tens Machine is switched on, the current begins focusing on the sensory nerve endings – these are targeted because they have a direct link to the brain.

The Tens unit sends a message to the brain to begin releasing endorphins, the body’ natural painkiller. The endorphins released helps relieve the user of their pain, almost acting as a prescription drug/medication with many people preferring TENS due to the devices not having any side effects.

Tens machines have become more of a ‘go to’ product for those who suffer from a number of different conditions, especially reducing nerve pain, muscle inflammation, pain from sciatica or arthritis.

How long can I use a tens machine for?

Electrotherapy or Tens Machines have been around for a long time, but in recent year this type of practice has become more accessible to all. When answering the question ‘how long can I use a tens machine for’ – you must first answer several questions alongside it, such as:

  • Will a Tens Machine be more effective with more uses?
  • How long can I leave a Tens machine on?
  • How frequently can I use a tens device without risking addiction?
  • Are there any risks with a high number of sessions per day?

TENS is a non-invasive form of therapy, which means that there is no risk of overdosing on your sessions in anyway. Tens units are designed to allow you to use the device if you need it. As mentioned above, TENS is designed to provide immediate relief from pains for different conditions and inflammation.

All our EMS Machine and Tens Machines are designed so that the therapy can be used on the go throughout the day.

A big question is how long can I leave a tens machine on for? – The answer is quite simple and convenient. It is usually advised that Tens therapy should last around 30 minutes each session, however there is no real danger to increase the duration of the session as long as you give your skin and body a break from the electrodes.

The only real risk from a Tens machine is the potential skin irritation that may come from leaving the pad on in one place too long.

Most medication or general pain relief methods usually come with limitations or some form of rules to follow – for example, most people are warned not to have ibuprofen on an empty stomach, and pain killers come with a safe dosage instruction, however, Tens Machines are nothing like drugs and they have no side effects.

TENS is extremely safe and a fantastic alternative to painkillers. There is no limit to how much a tens machine can be used before becoming addicted, due to there being no addiction involved in the therapy.