E-stim vs TENs: Are they different?

When it comes to treatment plans, there are many different ways to help relax the muscles and stimulate the muscles on a cellular level to speed up healing time. One of the most common treatments you will find in clinics is a treatment called E-Stim therapy. E-Stim is commonly mistaken for a TENs unit, due to the sensation being so similar. However, they work completely different from each other!

How E-stim and TENs machines work

Electrical Stimulation Therapy, or more commonly know E-Stim, stimulates the muscle fibers causing a contraction of the muscles. This increases blood flow, allows for a relaxation of the muscles, decreases inflammation and strengths the muscle. All of which due to a small electrical impulse being delivered deep into the muscle belly to cause a contraction.

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation, or TENs, is used for the relief of chronic or acute pain. TENs units work through stimulation of the nerves which travel along the same pathway as pain signals, causing a disruption of the pain pathways to the brain. This treatment is commonly used for chronic pain, and can aid in decreased inflammation through increased circulation.

E-Stim or TENs machine? Which is best for me?

TENs units are sold in doctors offices, Costco, Walgreens, all over! And typically at a reasonable price. E-Stim machines are typically only used for professional use for patients being treated by Chiropractors, Physical Therapist, etc.

TENs machines are focused on interrupting pain pathways temporarily, making this machine a common household treatment for pain relief at home. Conditions such as nerve pain, arthritis, carpal tunnel and various other conditions, typically chronic conditions.

E-Stim machines are focused on traveling deep into the muscle itself, relieving spasms, improving blood flow, and overall health of the muscle specifically. In regards to having this therapy in addition to a chiropractic treatment, it shows the most benefit for relaxing the muscle spasm and allowing for an easier and more effective adjustment.

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Disclaimer: No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.

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