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Old 11-21-2012, 05:31 PM   #1
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Tens unit?

Hi,
My doctor got me a TENS unit this week it help with neck and shoulder pain. I've tried it for a few days and not sure how I feel yet. Haven't felt any relief. For those who use it, do you feel relief during the treatment or is it something that happens after multiple uses. Also I think I feel like it is aggravating my symptoms, not not totally sure as the last few days I have had a very high increase in pain. Has anyone used it and felt it made your pain worse?

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Old 11-21-2012, 05:54 PM   #2
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Re: Tens unit?

If it is making your pain worse, either the pads are placed wrong or it is set too high. It should never hurt. On the other hand, I do not find that it does much good. They have used on me at PT and I have owned 3 different models over 10 years...waste of my money. But at least half the people I have discussed them with feel like they help.

Get a Physical therapist to demonstrate using it for your particular problem.

 
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:35 PM   #3
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Re: Tens unit?

Dear cspine, i have to use the reusable, gel or karaya type that are big & oval. You rewet them to make them sticky again. The square, one time use electrodes, with the black in a line down the middle, are too sharp of sensation.When i put electrodes too close together it kind of squeezes my muscles. Tens works by causing some minimal pain, NOT real pain, to send a signal to the brain to release serotonin & other endorphins. It also scrambles the signal of your back pain. Its hard to describe.. it tells you in the booklet. Did you get the booklet? When set right( i have to use on full blast 24 hrs a day) it actually buzzes out the pain i am feeling. Put it on, leave unit open, turn the settings & the " volume" down & gradually increase all until you feel your pain less. It works while you have it on. The effects last 30 mins tops for me after taking it off. On me if too high or electrodes too small( more surface area is super important to me) its too sharp. I like continuous. If too high it can contract your muscles. That may be sore later. But, increasing your pain, idk? Ask the PT ppl to help you set it & they may have more comfortable electrodes. Either too high or too low, when set right it should make you say Ahhh, thats better. Of course, all this is just what i feel and my observations on myself. I got thru a dr leaving & finding another with and only because of the tens. I swear by them, and my pain is a monster. It can be a hassle but it helps me to take less narcotic medicine. Try putting all settings on halfway & increase the "volume" slowly. When it " grabs" turn it down a bit, then adjust pulse width( i like it on as hi as the pulse width can go) rate- try halfway, then "play" with it. If you get it right you will know, it will make you feel a reduction in pain, necks are hard though so little space, imo. But for me i use it on low back. Like I said this is what works for me & my experience. I would hate for you to abandon it without you even having it set right to give it a fair trial. Sorry if this is so long and redundant. I am just trying to explain something that is hard for me to explain.

Last edited by gmak; 11-21-2012 at 10:06 PM. Reason: typos, reword,

 
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Old 11-22-2012, 04:10 AM   #4
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Re: Tens unit?

Thanks for your advice Daffydolphin and gmak. I'm going to keep working with it over the holiday and weekend to see if I can find the right setting and place that helps. Hopefully it will help.

 
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Old 11-22-2012, 08:12 PM   #5
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Re: Tens unit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daffydolphin View Post
...waste of my money.
That's my feeling 100%! I have not heard from many folks who've gotten any real relief from them. It did no more good for me that tapping my head and rubbing my belly. I actually find it hard to believe they can be sold for pain management (or relief). But for those it works for, good deal but not for me even remotely. Good Luck on 'ya.

 
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:31 PM   #6
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Re: Tens unit?

hey cspineguy, how are you. I have tried the tens unit and it did nothing.
I told you, there is NO treatment for neck pain. Not even physical therapy.

It's not good to have neck pain, not good at all. It's a nightmare.

 
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:26 PM   #7
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Re: Tens unit?

Thanks it is good thing you shared here.

 
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:42 AM   #8
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Re: Tens unit?

I use it as part of my treatment...

We all have to realize that treating chronic pain is about using as many modalities as possible. No one thing is going to provide 100% relief...

I use my TENS unit at least once a day and it helps lessen the pain a bit.

Just like my daily exercise, physical therapy, yoga/stretching, use of injections or steroids when needed, massage, acupuncture, ice, heat, counseling, biofeedback, cognitive behavioral therapy, eating well, not smoking, getting a good night's sleep, maintaining a healthy weight, aqua therapy, etc....

There are also medications like nerve pain meds which target that specific type of pain. Same thing with a muscle relaxer....these help tremendously with muscle spasms.

Finding a great PM to help us live the best life possible with having a comprehensive program is best.

So...it's easy to find an inexpensive TENS unit online and as mentioned...anything that helps even a tiny bit to lessen our pain is good. All modalities added up should equal to about a 5 on the pain scale.

 
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:12 PM   #9
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Re: Tens unit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nochange View Post
hey cspineguy, how are you. I have tried the tens unit and it did nothing.
I told you, there is NO treatment for neck pain. Not even physical therapy.

It's not good to have neck pain, not good at all. It's a nightmare.
Maybe that's the reason why it doesn't work for me. I've been in two car accidents and one motorcycle accident and I suffered from whiplash terribly. It's my nightmare as well!

 
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Old 06-24-2013, 09:45 PM   #10
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Re: Tens unit?

Hi everyone. I hope you're all feeling well or better both physically and spiritually. I've been suffering chronic shoulder and back pain for years & cannot stand for longer than a few seconds. So my lifestyle is very limited. I bought a couple of Tens machines a few days ago as paracetamol doesn't help and I don't want stronger drugs.

My 1st experience with Tens on my shoulder seemed to cause more pain initially as my shoulder as not been in use for a long time. So I tried turning it down a bit the last couple of days. I noticed soreness of the muscle and sin immediately after about 30 minutes after treatment but after and hour or do I notice my shoulder pain much less and I can move it more freely. In the 5 treatments I've had my shoulder is much, much looser. I can move it more freely. It seems to improve more hours AFTER the treatment.

As for my 3 poor cracked vertebrae. I bought a Wi Touch Pro, put it on and was able to walk much further and recover from pain much after and didn't struggle a tenth as much to walk. Again my back felt stronger the next day.

Tens, from my limited experience will help relieve pain. During and how long after depends on the injury. Areas that may not have experienced movement for years would initially react with pain just like your very first jog. But once movement and oxygen and nutrients begin coming back to that area good results can be expected. Any suggestions would be most welcome.

 
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Old 06-24-2013, 09:46 PM   #11
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Re: Tens unit?

Hi everyone. I hope you're all feeling well or better both physically and spiritually. I've been suffering chronic shoulder and back pain for years & cannot stand for longer than a few seconds. So my lifestyle is very limited. I bought a couple of Tens machines a few days ago as paracetamol doesn't help and I don't want stronger drugs.

My 1st experience with Tens on my shoulder seemed to cause more pain initially as my shoulder has not been in use for a long time. So I tried turning it down a bit the last couple of days. I noticed soreness of the muscle and pain immediately after about 30 minutes after treatment but after and hour or so I notice my shoulder pain much less and I can move it more freely. In the 5 treatments I've had my shoulder is much, much looser. I can move it more freely. It seems to improve more hours AFTER the treatment.

As for my 3 poor cracked vertebrae. I bought a Wi Touch Pro, put it on and was able to walk much further and recover from pain much after and didn't struggle a tenth as much to walk. Again my back felt stronger the next day.

Tens, from my limited experience will help relieve pain. During and how long after depends on the injury. Areas that may not have experienced movement for years would initially react with pain just like your very first jog. But once movement and oxygen and nutrients begin coming back to that area good results can be expected. Any suggestions would be most welcome.

Last edited by worldcitizen; 06-24-2013 at 09:49 PM.

 
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