Physiotherapy is the Department of treatment which is performed externally on the body of the patient. The physiotherapy treatment can be a standalone treatment or given in combination with medicines. Physiotherapy is most commonly used for treating sore muscles, inflammation of nerves and tissues, post-surgery and during healing phase after accidents.
The Physiotherapy is performed by a physiotherapist who is a qualified professional with experience. The underlying cause of the pain or inflammation will be determined by the therapist who will further decide a plan of treatment for the patient. The plan of treatment mostly includes few set of exercises along with therapies which should be taken for a minimum of 20-30 days. The physiotherapy treatment requires certain equipment to perform various therapies.
TENS i.e. Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation are majorly used for treating nerve-related conditions which are causing pain to the patient (mostly chronic or acute pain). The TENS unit works by way of sending pulses on the surface of skin and nerve strands which have a stimulating effect. These stimulating pulses will help in preventing the pain signals reaching to the brain. The unit also induces our body to generate a high level of natural painkiller ‘Endorphin’ on its own.
How does the TENS unit work?
- The TENS is performed with the help of small battery-powered machine which matches the size of the pocket
- The two electrodes from the machine are connected to the skin. The electrodes are placed on the affected area or the pressure point which creates electrical impulses which travel with the nerve fibres.
- When the current is passed from the unit, people experience less pain since the electricity stimulates the nerve of affected area and signals the brain to block pain.
- It also stimulates the nerves to produce endorphin which is a natural painkiller. This helps in blocking the perception of pain.
- The TENS machine can be set at various wavelength frequencies which would be determined by the doctor, physiotherapist or the acupuncturist.
- The TENS is commonly used for relieving pain caused by different types of ailments or health conditions.
- The TENS unit is mostly used to treat joint, bone or muscle problems which are caused due to osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia. Neck pain, lower back pain, bursitis or tendinitis.
- TENS has also been used to treat other types of pain such as the labour pain, chronic pain or cancer pain.
About the safety of TENS usage:
- The TENS unit is considered quite safe, however; the misuse of TENS can cause harm.
- The Proper prescription is required before using the TENS unit.
- Inform your doctor if you are using any alternative therapy along with the traditional medical treatment. It is not recommended to side line the medical treatment and simply rely on the alternative therapy.
Note: It is said that the electrodes need to be replaced when they no longer stick firmly on skin. It needs to be changed also when it has been re-applied more than the prescribed number of usage or when the electrode does not conduct effectively.