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A Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator (TENS) is a battery-run machine that relieves pain. TENS was designed to help reduce muscle pain, chronic or otherwise.
Similar to the Electrical Muscle Stimulator (EMS), both these devices incorporate low voltage electrical impulses to abate the pain. While EMS causes the muscle to contract, TENS stimulates the nerves. TENS has been observed by many to be the more effective of the two.
How does a TENS machine work?
Med-Fit provides you with an easily portable Tens machine with leads connected to pads called electrodes, or other customers may choose our Wireless Tens Machine options. These electrodes are put directly on the body where the pain is being experienced. The machine has safe variations in voltage which can be adjusted by the user.
Once you are happy with the settings, the device sends electrical impulses through the electrodes. You may feel a tingling sensation in the region where the electrodes are placed. This current then stimulates the nerve pathways and reduces the pain signals that are being sent to the brain, hence reducing pain. Nerve stimulation also helps in the production of endorphins, which are the body's natural painkillers.
Who can use a TENS machine?
Tens Machines tend to be used to help reduce pain in nerves, joints, muscles and much more. Unlike medication, there are virtually not side effects when using Tens Machines, which is a bonus for those wanting to stay away from medication.
Tens Machines are used to treat the following symptoms:
- Tens for Period Pains
- Tens for Labour pains
- Tens for Muscle Soreness
- Tens for Back Pain
- Tens for Shoulder Pain
- Increase Blood Circulation
They have also been known to alleviate pain for the following conditions:
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- An array of sports injuries
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Painful diabetic neuropathy
Anyone suffering from a painful condition can make use of a TENS machine after consulting their healthcare professional. TENS is completely safe to use as each device comes with a comprehensive manual and guidelines. Following these precautions will make sure that the device does no harm and is used with complete safety.
Some people may be allergic to the electrode patches of the device, the gel or the tape. We have a selection of sensitive skin electrodes that should help you avoid any rashes or allergic reactions.
People who have a pacemaker should use the device under controlled conditions.
TENS can be used at any time in the day except when driving or while using other electronic equipment.
If your doctors advise you against using TENS because of specified health reasons, it is best to comply.
The electrodes should never be placed on the eyelids.
Using a TENS machine from Med-Fit can significantly improve your daily lifestyle because of the benefits that it provides including:
Portability: The TENS device is very small and easy to maintain. Since it runs on battery and it can fit in your bag or packet, it is easy to carry around. It can be effortlessly taken from one place to another. The machine, therefore, can always be available when unpredictable pain occurs.
No Side Effects: People suffering from pain usually tend to get used to steroids or other anti-inflammatory medications. Such medicines may provide relief but this comes at a cost. Most of them have side effects which can further worsen the patient’s condition. TENS has no side effects whatsoever which makes it much safer than other options.
Instant Relief: Once the electrodes have been placed, it will not take long for the device to work its magic. For patients suffering from chronic pain, instant relief is rare. This is one of the major advantages of using TENS.
Long Usage: Every time there is a sensation of pain the device can be used since it has no side effects. There is no fear of addiction. It can be used for long periods of time without worrying, as long as the safety precautions are kept in mind.
Strengthening The Nerves: Pain is sometimes caused when the nerves fall short in fulfilling their tasks. This occurs when the nerve is damaged and it is not able to receive or send signals. TENS gives electric impulses which help in correcting the nerve signaling patterns. Prolonged usage may even help reverse nerve damage.
Affordable: Unlike similar machines previously, a tens machine is available to everyone. It is not beyond the reach of ordinary people and is cheap enough for everyone to buy.
Reduces Inflammation: Inflammation usually occurs when there is a physical injury or in conditions like sciatica. Such pain is difficult to heal with medication and can be unbearable. TENS first reduces the inflammation which in turn takes care of the pain.
Massages: The fusion of TENS and EMS and options like inbuilt messaging has given these machines additional advantages. By changing the setting on the remote this device can even turn into a massager that has different speeds. This helps loosen the muscles and reduce pain.
The presence of pain can force you to make major changes and sacrifice daily activities. The fear of pain will soon take over your life if not controlled at the right time and with the right method.
Do tens machines work?
Yes, many studies have shown that Tens Machines have been known to alleviate pain and do help to treat many different things (as seen as above). A study on woman during painful menstrual cramps with Tens devices and placebo’s shows that Tens Units are highly effective.
Tens Machines come with several fantastic benefits including:
- Instant pain relief: Once the electrodes are placed, it will not take long for the device to work it’s magic and begin providing you with pain relief.
- Affordable: Tens is available to everyone. It is not beyond reach of the average person and the prices come at different affordable levels for different things.
- Reduces Inflammation: Tens machines aim to take care of the inflammation first which in turn then takes care of the pain.
- Massages: The combination of Tens and EMS – these machines have different advantages. By changing settings on the remote, these devices can even turn into a massager that has different speeds. Naturally the massaging will help loosen muscles, reduce pain and drive blood circulation to that area.
- No side effects: As mentioned above, Tens has no real side-effects which is a made plus when you want to avoid medication.
- Long Usage: There should be no fear of addiction when using Tens Machines. Tens devices can be used for long periods without worrying, as long as you keep safety precautions in mind.
- Strengthen your nerves: Tens gives electrical impulses which helps correcting nerve signaling. Prolonged usage may even reverse nerve damage.
If you're still unsure of the device or wish to know more, click on our Choosing the right tens machine page.
Who shouldn't use Tens Machines
Using a TENS machine for pain relief is generally considered safe for many individuals. However, it's important to consult with your healthcare provider before utilizing a TENS device in specific circumstances.
Avoid using a TENS machine if:
- You are pregnant, in labor, or suspect pregnancy.
- You have a pacemaker, other implanted medical devices, or experience heart rhythm issues.
- You possess electrical or metal implants within your body.
- Children under 16 years old should use the device under supervision.
- If you have conditions like cancer, diabetes, or epilepsy, it's advisable to seek medical advice before using this product.
How to ensure you use the Tens Machines Safely
A TENS machine, utilizing Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Stimulation (TENS), is a device designed to alleviate and diminish pain. These devices are powered by batteries and feature leads with adhesive pads for application.
Due to its electrical nature, it's crucial to use this device correctly for optimal results. Detailed instructions and guidelines for proper use can be found in the accompanying user manual. Pay careful attention to pad placement, and avoid applying them to the following areas:
- Frontal or lateral regions of the neck.
- Mouth, temples, or eyes.
- Both the chest and upper back simultaneously.
- Numb areas.
- Regions with varicose veins, irritation, or broken skin.
Do Tens Machines help with cramps?
Tens can certainly be a method of pain relief for those struggling with cramps, or even for those struggling with conditions like endometriosis - especially for those that do not want to take any specific medication. Tens machines have been known to be pain relievers for: Period Pains, Leg Cramps, Muscle Cramps, Endometriosis and many more similar conditions or cramps.
Does a tens machine tone muscle?
A Tens Machines unfortunately does not build muscle, however an EMS device can in fact help you tone and strengthen your muscles.
What if I have sensitive skin?
A regular occurrence and we cater to those looking for sensitive electrodes. You can find out sensitive skin electrodes for tens machines in our Tens Electrodes section in the navigation.
Can Tens Machines burn fat?
As mentioned above, unfortunately Tens doesn’t aim at muscle toning or burning muscle. This can be confused with EMS devices. EMS units can help build muscle mass, increase your metabolism and assist you in burning off excess fat at a much faster rate.
How long should I use a tens machine for?
It really depends on your reason for usage, however typically a machine is used for around 15-30 minutes per session, and can be used several times a day if needed.
When should I not use a Tens device?
Don't use it in the bath or the shower, operating machinery or whilst driving.
What type of tens machine will I need?
This will majorly depend on your conditions, issues, pains and possible injuries - we'd recommend looking into this on another one of our pages, choosing the right tens machine for you.