What is T.E.N.S?
Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation or T.E.N.S is a method of electrical stimulation which aims to provide pain relief by stimulating the sensory nerves and modulating pain. TENS is an alternative to drug treatment as it is a non-invasive treatment technique that has few side effects.
A TENS machine comprises of a hand held battery operated unit (looking similar to a walkman) which generates electrical stimulation and can be easily controlled by the individual. Pre-gel electrodes are placed on the skin which are easily applied and convey the electrical stimulation.
The frequency, intensity and duration of TENS can be manipulated to control pain. With the support from the physiotherapist people can identify the most effective frequency for their pain.
TENS is effective at reducing pain in the following ways:
- When using a high frequency, TENS stimulates certain 'non-pain' nerve fibres to send signals to the brain that block other nerve signals carrying pain messages.
- When using a low frequency, TENS promotes the production of endorphins which are natural pain-relieving hormones.
Types of pain treatable by T.E.N.S
TENS is used to relieve pain and may include the following:
- Acute pain – such as sports injuries, acute torticollis, acute low back pain and joint pain
- Chronic pain – such as low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, peripheral nerve injuries and phantom limb pain.
- Postoperative pain
- Raynaud’s disease pain
- Diabetic neuropathy pain
- In labour and delivery pain
Benefits of T.E.N.S
T.E.N.S is a non-invasive, practical and safe method to help ease both acute and chronic pain. It is an alternative to medication and designed so that you can move around with it working. The machine is easy to control and you can place itin a pocket or clip it onto a belt.
At Physio.co.uk our physiotherapist can advise you if a TENS machine will be suitable for your condition. If T.E.N.S is suitable, we can provide you with one and teach you how to use it.
For more information or book an assessment please call 0330 088 7800 You can also make appointments with Physio.co.uk online!