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TENS electrode application & placement

How does the TENS treatment work?

Painless thanks to nerve stimulation; that is the promise of a TENS therapy that can work excellently for most users. TENS stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation and is aimed at people with acute as well as chronic pain who want to relieve it. The first effects may be noticeable after a short time. The TENS therapy is painless and when used correctly, without side effects. But how does it work at all? And what is to be observed to get your pain under control.

For which complaints is the TENS treatment suitable?

In principle, you can apply TENSENS sensations all over the body to relieve pain. So a TENS therapy is conceivable in many areas or better for many types of pain.

A: Arthritis | Arthrosis | Arm Pain | Ankle Joint Pain | Arm Golfer's Elbow

B: Back Pain | C: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome   

E: Elbow PainF: Feet Pain | Finger or Thumb Pain

H: Hand Pain | Herpes Zoster | Headaches | Hip Pain

K: Knee Pain | Knee Joint Pain

L: Lumbago and Sciatica | Lumbar Spin PainLower Arm Pain 

M: Migraines | Menstrual Complaints 

O: Occipital-Neck-Pain P: Phantom Pain | Pain in the Calf 

S: Stress Headaches  | Shoulder Pain Scar Pain

W: Wrist Pain | Wryneck Torticollis | Whiplash

Please note that you should in any case first consult your attending physician, since TENS may not be carried out in some situations. Among these examples are: strong contraindications

  • Cardiac arrhythmia.
  • Pregnancy (only with medical consultation)
  • wearing a pacemaker
  • skin irritation, inflammation or open wounds at the intended location
  • Metallic implants in the body (including copper spirals)
  • Mental illness

Why should I use TENS?

It pinches, it stings, it hurts. Nearly everyone has to cope with physical pain from time to time. Especially people who work a lot sitting down and are therefore predestined for neck and back pain have it.


Whether it hurts slightly or severely, pain of all kinds, for example, severely affects the quality of life considerably. The TENS stimulation current therapy – that is, the electrical nerve stimulation can help to bring about a pain relief. And that without medication, without chemicals and with correct use without side effects.

TENS is based on the principle of strong electrical stimulation. By means of electrodes (in the following also called skin electrodes) gentle stimuli with corresponding current are conducted via the skin into the nerve tracts in order to block them. Side effects are very rare. And thanks to handy TENS-devices you can carry out the TENS applications even at home or in the office, without special knowledge. It only requires some precision in the selection and positioning of the skin electrodes. The concept could also be called "self-help for acute and chronic pain".

Your advantages through TENS applications at a glance

  • Immediate pain relief: You are in pain at this moment and not only when you get an appointment with the doctor. With an appropriate TENS device, you simply apply the nerve stimulation at home. It works immediately ✓
  • Strong effect: Most users are very impressed by the effectiveness of the TENS treatment and register great success in pain treatment and muscle relaxation and in the elimination of circulatory disorders. Of course, this is no guarantee that it works equally well for every user ✓
  • Combinable: If you cannot yet live without medication, especially in the case of chronic pain, then it does not matter. TENS treatments can be wonderfully combined with drug therapies and thus produce a maximum treatment effect without increasing the risk of side effects ✓
  • No previous knowledge required: You can simply use your TENS device at home without previous knowledge ✓
  • Hardly any side effects: In contrast to the intake of drugs, pain therapy with a TENS device is usually free of side effects: ✓

What is the experience of TENS users?

Strong positive.

However, there is no guarantee for the effectiveness of the treatment, as every person reacts differently to stimulation current. Some users dismiss TENS as hardly effective and hardly noticeable, although it is by no means a new treatment method. experience reports of the customers who have already tried our TENS EMS Combo Device STIM-PRO X9. Often there is talk of "fast effects" combined with a clearly higher quality of life again. And also from a scientific point of view there are many indications that the form of therapy with TENS can lead to a fast and clear pain reduction, even if it is not a remedy, but only a form of pain treatment.

However, many users have a very positive attitude towards TENS. Please read the experience reports of the customers who have already tried our TENS EMS Combo Device STIM-PRO X9. Often there is talk of "fast effects" combined with a clearly higher quality of life again. And also from a scientific point of view there are many indications that the form of therapy with TENS can lead to a fast and clear pain reduction, even if it is not a remedy, but only a form of pain treatment.

There is a simple reason for this: most pain has a deeper cause that needs to be repaired. Especially with a healthy and active lifestyle. TENS  only regulates the pain, but does not eliminate the cause. For this reason, TENS is often combined with electrical muscle stimulation (EMS), an artificially generated stimulation of a muscle. He reacts as usual with a muscle contraction and consumes energy through the work done. Thus, causes of pain can also be treated.ýnbsp; which can also treat causes of pain. You can find further information in our detailed EMS guide. 

The TENS stimulation current therapy

Are you looking for a non-drug option to relieve your chronic or acute pain? A TENS therapy could be the ideal alternative for you.

TENS and treat pain

But it needs it at the beginning to get used to the TENS-stimulation current therapy and also to find out the correct form of application. The TENS therapy works very individually, but still simple.

A treatment duration of 30 to 40 minutes is recommended. From this time on, the body produces endorphins which have a pain-relieving effect beyond the actual application. Of course, the duration can be adjusted to your individual needs. If necessary, you can also extend the application period and apply TENS several times a day.

The only important thing is that you feel good. Electrotherapy is usually perceived as a pleasant tingling sensation. If it becomes unpleasant, then the current frequency or the intensity of the stimulation current is too high. This can cause you to overstrain your skin areas. If necessary, approach the area step by step.

What is also necessary is that the skin electrodes are placed correctly.

The correct electrode placement for a successful TENS treatment

The self-adhesive electrodes have the key role in every TENS treatment. They are the ones that transmit the current to the skin and nerve tracts. Through the use of suitable electrodes very positive effects can be achieved.

But only if they also sit properly.


Where should the pads be placed for ideal electrode placement?

TENS makes pain therapy for the entire body conceivable. In this respect, there are no limits regarding the electrode position. You should not place the electrodes on the neck and on the chest chest if you do not want to place them. In the worst case, the direct proximity to the heart can cause ventricular fibrillation.

Otherwise, always place the electrodes where it hurts. Of course, you may not know exactly where the nerve paths or nerve fibers are that are to be blocked. Therefore, several electrodes are usually placed around the painful area to reach all nerves. Nevertheless, a little spirit of experimentation is required: Try out in several applications with different electrode positions, for example, to see where the effect is more noticeable and where it is not so noticeable. Even a small difference in placement can make a big difference in the effect.

The correct electrodes themselves also make a difference. For example, you should use either several electrodes or a pad with a larger surface area for the back. Special electrodes are also recommended for rounded bodies such as the knee as well as for the neck-shoulder area. And so it continues for other body parts.

Which electrodes are suitable for which TENS device, what advantages a TENS device with multiple electrodes offers and how the electrodes work exactly you can find out here.

Why are the electrodes so relevant?

Each form of pain appears in its own way and demands specific nerve tracts. With transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, the nerve path affected by the pain is blocked by stimulation current, whereby the pain stimulus, i.e. that which makes the pain perceptible only later, cannot be transported to the brain. This is then referred to as the gatekeeper or gatekeeper effect.

However, if the electrode is positioned incorrectly and does not cover the corresponding nerve tract properly, the effect of the therapy is already reduced. With square universal electrodes, it is difficult to find an optimal position, especially in hard-to-reach areas or on the curves of the body. In this case, it is best to use specially shaped electrodes that have been specially designed for use on specific body parts.

Also make sure that the skin areas are not damaged and do not show any skin diseases. In case of open wounds or skin irritation, TENS therapy can worsen the condition. In such a case, wait until your injury is completely healed. And consult a doctor before using TENS for the first time.

The correct application frequency - At what intervals should the TENS treatment be carried out?

Ideally, you listen to your feeling and apply the TENS treatment whenever your pain increases again, if necessary several times a day. Since TENS usually has few side effects, an overdose is practically impossible. Ideally your pain will be relieved during the TENS application and the effect will last for a certain time.

How does electrostimulation with a TENS device feel?

Whether knee, neck, wrist, head or arm pain: TENS itself must not cause pain and usually does not do so if the current intensity and duration of application are correct and the affected skin areas are uninjured and healthy. The typical sensation of a TENS application can best be described as a relaxing and slight tingling sensation.