August 18, 2017
When each patient walks through our doors at CAM Physical Therapy and Wellness Services, the goal of our Glenn Dale/Bowie physical therapists is to construct a treatment program that addresses their condition as efficiently and effectively as possible. While various types of exercises will account for a large portion of these programs, other interventions are also necessary to alleviate pain and other symptoms. One of the more commonly used interventions to accomplish this at our practice is called TENS therapy.
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a noninvasive therapy that sends a low-voltage electrical current through the nerves at a painful area in order to reduce pain levels. As a noninvasive treatment, TENS can be seen as an alternative to drug therapy that comes with far fewer side effects. Compared with pain-relieving drugs, the most common side effect of TENS therapy is an allergic skin reaction that only occurs in about 2-3% of patients.
TENS is administered with a small, battery-powered machine about the size of a pocket radio. The TENS machine has two wires that conduct electrical current called electrodes, which are attached to the skin at the area where the patient is experiencing pain. This creates a circuit of electrical impulses that travels along nerve fibers in order to alleviate pain in that particular region.
When the TENS machine is turned on, it can be set for different wavelength frequencies depending on the location and degree of the patient’s pain. Once the current is delivered, the patient will often experience less pain. This is either because the electrodes stimulate the nerves in an affected area and signals to the brain that block or scramble normal pain signals, or because the electric stimulation of nerves may help the body produce natural pain killers called endorphins, which block the perception of pain.
How our Glenn Dale/Bowie physical therapists use TENS therapy
TENS therapy can be used to treat a variety of injuries and painful conditions as a supplement to other exercise-based interventions. The most common conditions our Glenn Dale/Bowie physical therapists use TENS therapy to treat include the following:
- Fibromyalgia-related bone, joint or muscle problems
- Low back pain
- Neck pain
If you’re experiencing pain of any sort, our Glenn Dale/Bowie physical therapists will approach your condition with a multi-faceted approach that will include TENS therapy and several other effective components. Contact CAM Physical Therapy and Wellness Services at 301-464-7390 to schedule an appointment at any of our four clinics in Laurel, Hyattsville, Glenn Dale/Bowie or Parkville/Baltimore, MD today, or click here for more information on TENS therapy.