During Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy’s first physical therapy session years ago, he became familiar with TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator) treatment. The idea is simple: place electrode pads on the area that is hurting, and then deliver an analgesic electrical current in order to provide some temporary pain relief.
When I returned home from this first session and shared the news at home, my nephew’s ears immediately perked up. (He was spending part of the summer with us, and was probably around ten years old at the time.) “You mean they are electrocuting you?” Of course, during my next session my nephew was anxiously sitting in the corner of the room with a big grin on his face as they applied the electrodes. I think he was a little let down when he did not see me convulsing in pain after the machine was turned on.
Early on my former physical therapist recommended that I purchase my own personal TENS machine to use at home. I looked at many models, some inexpensive (manual knobs) and some expensive (digital settings). I went with the less expensive model, and have not regretted it since.
Don’t be deceived as I was with the battery power source. When I used this machine for the first time, I thought to myself “how good can this $50 battery-powered machine really be…am I even going to be able to feel the current?” With that it mind, I applied the electrodes to my shoulder and then immediately cranked the settings up to maximum power. As my arm started flailing around uncontrollably, I shouted out for someone to please help me turn off the machine. So trust me when I say that this machine can deliver a punch. (My nephew would have had a blast had he been around on this occasion!)
This model has two channels, which means that I can apply it to both wrists at the same time…or to one shoulder and one elbow. The electrode pads are easy to take on and off (and seem to stay stickier for a longer time if stored in the refrigerator.)
Please check with your doctor first to see if TENS treatment for you. If it is, I would highly recommend this machine – it’s affordable, easy to use, and perfect for those moments when you need some temporary yet immediate pain relief at home.
TENS Battery-Operated portable Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator for Pain Relief
The Sonic Tens is a pocket-sized, portable, battery operated TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator) which is used for the symptomatic relief and management of chronic (long term) pain. Relieve Pain and Rebuild, Re-educate, Tone, and Stimulate Muscles. TENS is a non evasive method intended to be used to alleviate pain. The Sonic TENS sends impulses through the skin that stimulate the nerve (or nerves) in the treatment area. Features include: Dual Channels which may be isolated between channels – meaning you can either station. Wave Form: Modified, square wave form with zero net direct current (DC) component. Pulse Amplitude: 0 to 80 mA each channel, adjustable (500 ohm load). Pulse Frequency: 2-150 Hz adjustable. Pulse Width: 60 – 250 Microseconds adjustable. Modulation mode: Pulse width is automatically varied in a cyclic pattern over an interval of nominally 4.0 seconds. Burst MOde 7 Pulses per Burst, 2 Bursts per second. 100 Hz internal frequency of burst. Maximum Charge: 20 micro coulombs per pulse. Power Source: 9 Volt Alkaliine Battery. Battery Life: 70 hours average useage (alkaline). Size 3.5 ” x .5 x 2.5″. Weight of unit without battery: 3 oz. FDA 510K approved.