A tens machine is the transcutaneous nerve stimulator machine that runs on electricity and tends to override the pain receptor in the human brain. There are several side effects of using tens unit, which can be eliminated with proper usage. With extended use of tens unit, you can have mild side effects. Skin redness and skin irritation are the most common side effects of applying the tens pad.
What can Cause the Side Effects?
If you allow too much current to pass through the tens units to pad, then you will develop muscle twitching over the neck. If it occurs, just decrease the current flow. Some users wrongly place the pads of the tens unit over the veins that travel from the neck to throat or brain. This act blocks the blood flow causing a side effect. Those suffering from epilepsy cannot place the pad over the neck as that might cause a seizure. Pregnant ladies cannot use tens unit to relieve pain from any part of the body. Although it relieves the labour pain, to some extent, its effect on an unborn is yet unknown. During the third trimester, you cannot use it. Never place the electrodes of tens unit over the uterus region irrespective of the fact which week it is.
Some of the Side Effects of Using Tens Unit….
- Pain: It is the foremost side effect. In tens unit there is a continuous pulsing of electric stimulation from Tens machine that might cause muscle twitching and pain. If you make the intensity too high, pain will be severe. It might cause muscle soreness and hence, users must lower the intensity until strong tingling sensation is felt.
- Skin irritation: Although a tens unit is meant for long-term use, you have to periodically remove the pad from skin. Clean the skin before applying the pad as that will disperse the current adequately. This will reduce the level of skin irritation. If you do not change the position of the pad, then there can be redness and skin irritation.
- In rare cases tens unit may cause welts, hives, burns and allergic skin reactions. Beginners may find it difficult to use.
- Starters of Tens units may suffer from headache, nausea, muscle ache, loss of sensation and enhanced hair growth.
- Tens units cannot be used for an elongated period as there are side effects of using tens unit such as muscular twitching. If it happens, this implies that an overstimulation has occurred. It is important to consult the physician before using it.
How can Use of Tens Unit Impact those with Pacemakers?
People who have pacemakers cannot use tens unit. Electrical impulses from a tens unit may affect pacemakers. Those with a bipolar pacemaker can use it. However, if the pacemaker is unipolar, then there may be irregularities. You need to reprogram the pacemaker prior to using the tens unit. It can cause severe side effects.
Using a Tens Unit Over Neck and Head…
You can place a tens unit over several parts but then some patients cannot use it over head and neck. If you have convulsions, seizures, or blood vessel disorder, you must avoid tens unit. Never place electrodes on the anterior region of the neck.
Tens unit can block the pain in the brain, but then it offers no ultimate solution. Always use tens unit under the supervision of a doctor.