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How a TENS Machine Can Help Relieve Fibromyalgia Pain - A Complete Guide
Ever wondered about how a TENS machine can help relieve the pain caused by Fibromyalgia? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Today, we will take a deep dive into what the TENS machine is and how it can help manage Fibromyalgia pain.
What Is TENS?
You’ve probably heard about the TENS machine many times. However, now that you want more information about this machine and how it can treat pain. TENS is short for Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, a process that utilizes mild electrical currents to treat chronic pain.
In this process, the TENS machine is attached to the person’s body using tiny sticky pads called electrodes. The device is very small and handy so you can hold it while being attached to your body.
Once the machine is switched on, small electrical impulses will go to the areas in your body where pain can be felt. It helps relieve the pain and relax your muscles. It also improves the production of endorphins, which are the natural painkillers in the body.
A TENS machine can be used to treat pain caused by different diseases such as Fibromyalgia.
Symptoms of fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia is a rare medical condition that causes pain all over the body. People also call it “widespread pain”. A person who has this condition can also suffer sleep problems, fatigue, and emotional stress.
There is no known cause for fibromyalgia. In fact, it requires a lot of tests to completely diagnose the problem. Its symptoms can start showing in people around 30-60 years old. In the United States alone, Fibromyalgia affects roughly 4 million adults, which is 2% of the adult population.
The pain caused by fibromyalgia is chronic, which means it is not curable. It will stay with you throughout your lifetime so proper pain management is vital in helping you handle the problem.
The following are the most common symptoms of fibromyalgia:
- Pain and stiffness all over your body
- Recurring fatigue
- Depression & Anxiety
- Sleeping problems
- Impaired memory
- Constant headaches
- Tingling pain in the hands and feet
- Pain in the face or jaw
- Abdominal pains
Causes of fibromyalgia
The cause of fibromyalgia is yet unknown. But there are things that can trigger the pain. For example, people who have experienced a serious injury, such as after a car accident, can happen to develop fibromyalgia in the later year. It can also be triggered by emotional stress and infection. It is also associated with other diseases like arthritis, osteoarthritis, and temporomandibular disorder (TMD).
The treatment for fibromyalgia mainly includes self-care strategies and anti-depressants. Over the counter pain killers may be also given by your doctor to relieve the constant pain. Since fibromyalgia is a chronic condition, you can undergo occupational or physical therapy to help manage the pain or increase your stamina against pain.
How can a TENS unit for fibromyalgia help me?
A TENS unit is a non-invasive yet effective device that helps relieve pain caused by different medical conditions such as fibromyalgia. This small device is extremely portable and useful for managing fibromyalgia pain. Your package should have a TENS machine with dual channels, two wires with a total of 4 connectors, four electrode patches.
You can use the machine for 30 minutes while you’re active. A friendly tip – you need to consult your doctor before using the TENS machine. If you have a cardiac pacemaker or metallic implant, you can’t use it because the electric stimulator might cause discomfort.
Evidence for TENS to Reduce Fibromyalgia Pain
In a 2020 study, 44% of the 301 women participants reported that the TENS machine has reduced 30-40 percent of the pain. The subjects in this study have suffered body pains caused by different conditions. In the same study, they used the TENS machine for four consecutive weeks and the majority reported a global improvement in their condition.
Claudia Sommer, a pain researcher at the Wurzburg University in Germany has also said that the TENS had a positive result in treating pain as per a randomized controlled study she conducted.
Another TENS expert at the University of Iowa City, Kathleen Sluka has led the trial with rheumatologist Leslie Crofford or Vanderbilt University in Nashville and has confirmed the benefits of the TENS machine for decreasing fibromyalgia pain.
How to use a TENS unit for fibromyalgia
To use a TENS unit for fibromyalgia, clean the portion of your body using water only. Before putting the patches on your skin, make sure you dry the area. Prepare the TENS machine and the patches.
Attach the patches on your body where you can feel the pain. For example, if you have neck pain you can put electrodes on the back of your neck. Two black electrodes should be placed parallel with the red electrodes at 4 different points of your neck.
TENS Electrode pads placement for fibromyalgia
The placement of the electrode pads for fibromyalgia depends on where you can feel pain. In most cases, you can feel the pain in your lower back, neck, knees, elbows, and shoulders. Our Caremax TENS Machine has programs specifically designed for various body part. For reference, please click our program card.
There are two main placement areas for TENS units for fibromyalgia: the top of shoulder blades and the lower back. Each of these areas has two electrodes, for a total of four electrodes. This placement is intended to target the widespread nerve pain that is characteristic of fibromyalgia.
TENS settings for fibromyalgia
Once you’ve turned on the TENS machine, you can start feeling the stimulator. In general, you need to wear the machine for at least 30 minutes. There are three mode settings in your TENS machine: Continue, Burst, and Modulation.
You can set the continue mode on for acute mild pain. If the stimulation seems weak, you can increase the intensity of the TENS unit. Modulation and Burst mode are useful for treating chronic pain such that in fibromyalgia. In this case, the unit will send through a bursting pain-relieving power to decrease the pain on the spot where you’ve placed the electrodes on.
Again, our Caremax TENS Machine has programs specifically designed for various body part experiencing chronic pain. For reference, please click our program card. However, If you want to use the customized program, set the pulse rate between 2Hz – 10Hz and a pulse width between 170uS – 200uS.
Find the best TENS unit for fibromyalgia
Looking for the best TENS unit for fibromyalgia? Caremax Australia has been selling the best TENS machines. For many years, we’ve been supplying individuals and healthcare professionals with premium-quality TENS units. When you have a TENS unit, you can have the immediate resort of pain management. This innovative technology could be the answer you’re looking for.
Discover the most sought-after products below essential for effective TENS therapy treatment.
|Caremax 2.0 Classic TENS machine||Caremax 2.0 Pro TENS Machine|
Are there any risks of side effects?
TENS machines are 100% safe for use. However, consulting your doctor is still important if you have other underlying medical conditions that might be triggered by the mild electrical stimulation caused by the TENS machines. For example, if you have a pacemaker, using the TENS machine might affect its performance. Your doctor can provide the best advice on your safety.