TENS Units

How Does A Tens Unit Work?

Tens units have different adjustable settings to control amplitude (intensity) of stimulation by controlling the voltage. Current, and pulse width (duration) of each pulse. Electrodes are placed at specific sites on a user’s body depending on the physical location of their pain. The current travels through electrodes and into the skin stimulating specific nerve pathways to produce a tingling or massaging sensation that reduces the perception of pain. When a Tens Unit is used as directed a T.E.N.S. is a safe, noninvasive, drug-free method of pain management. A Tens Unit is used to offer a better quality of life for people with pain. There are two ways to explain how a T.E.N.S. successfully decreases or eliminates pain.

One of these theories is called The Gate Control Theory and is the most advanced explanation. The gate-control theory suggests that there’s a neural mechanism in spinal cord that acts as a kind of gate, shutting down or opening up the flow of signals from the periphery to the brain. Whether the gate is open, closed or partially closed depends on what sort of signal it receives from the brain to change the perception of pain in the user’s body. These frequencies interfere with the transmission of pain messages at the so spinal cord level, and help block their transmission to the brain.

Another theory is called The Endorphin Release, which suggests that electrical impulses stimulate the production of endorphins and enkephalins in the body. These natural morphine-like substances block pain messages from reaching the brain, in a similar fashion to conventional drug therapy, but without the danger of dependence of other side effects.

Some common uses for T.E.N.S. treatment are: acute and chronic pain, post op incisions and post-surgical pain, labor, and delivery, migraine and tension headaches, acute pain from sports and other injuries, arthritis, chronic pain from tendentious and bursitis, cancer pain, and wound healing.

To learn more about our treatments or to schedule your first appointment, please contact our Rochester clinic at 585-434-5492, or write to us through our secure Patient Portal.

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