How TENS unit can help you with your Sciatica Pain?
How TENS Unit Can Help You with Your Sciatica
If you are suffering from sciatica, then you must have experienced how painful, frustrating, and debilitating it can be. For people who do not know what sciatica is, it is a nerve condition that is generated as a result of other health issues that exist within the human body. it can cause intense pain, numbness, and tingling so badly that it can be incapacitating. Health professionals used to recommend painkillers to patients as a way of dealing with the pain from this excruciating health condition. But nowadays, many physicians have begun to see how TENS units can help patients with their sciatica.
What Exactly is Sciatica?
The name ‘sciatica’ is coined from the nerve that is being affected by this condition, which is known as the sciatic nerve. It is the largest nerve and at the same time, the longest nerve in the human body. It passes from the spine or lowerback, through the hips, and down into the buttock. From there, it extends to the back of the thigh and through the knees where it splits and ends in the feet. The sciatic nerve controls function and sensation to the leg and foot.
What Causes Sciatica Pain?
At the onset, patients with sciatica start experiencing a tingling sensation anywhere along the upper thigh or buttock. The tingling sensation extends down the back of the thigh and can reach down to the toes. The sensation can also extend high up the lower back. People with sciatica, in most cases, experience the agonizing pain in one leg.
Sciatica is a condition that comes about as a result of slipped or prolapsed discs which protrude and mount undue pressure on inter-vertebral nerves. This is the pressure that irritates the sciatic nerve, causing severe pain and inflammation.
As soon as the nerve becomes inflamed, it transmits pain signals to the brain, which brings about sciatic pain.
Sciatica pain can be experienced in several places; at the source of the stress or compression or it may be referred or radiated down the sciatic nerve into the buttocks. The chronic pain can also be felt at the back of the thigh and in the lower leg as well.
Management of Sciatica Pain
You can manage sciatica pain using painkillers such as opioids, but you must seek out comprehensive medical diagnosis and ensure that you follow all medical counsel. You may need to sign up for sciatic nerve supervision and therapy. But one of the most effective methods of dealing with sciatica is by the use of the TENS unit.
What is a TENS Unit?
TENS – Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation – is a safe and non-invasive form of therapy that utilizes electric pulses which are delivered to any specific area of the human body to alleviate pain. These electrical pulses from TENS are administered via a portable unit which is powered by a small battery.
A TENS unit can be used either at home or in a clinical environment. Medical research has shown that a TENS unit can increase the chances of obtaining pain relief from sciatica.
How Do I Use the TENS Unit
The first step to take is to clean the area where the TENS electrode pads will be attached. Ensure that the area is completely dry before fixing the electrode.
Fix the TENS electrode pads close to the source of pain or pressure point that reaches the hurting area. Then select the mode of operation as directed by a doctor. The TENS unit has several modes: the conventional mode supplies a regular stream of electricity while the Burst mode works like acupuncture. The Burst mode delivers short bursts of electrical stimulation. The Modulation mode creates a feeling that is similar to massage via steady pulses and a cycle of bursts.
You can adjust the mechanism or machine to a level and the settings you are comfortable with, then gradually increase the level of stimulation until you start feeling some pain. Then take it down a few notches. A strong sensation should overwhelm you, though this is not painful in any way.
You can leave the TENS unit for a few minutes to several hours and this depends on the recommendations from your doctor and the amount of stimulation you need to find relief. Your physical therapist or doctor is in the best position to advise you accordingly.
Disengage the pads from their position on your body and store it in a cool and dry place.
The TENS unit for sciatica works by preventing pain signals from connecting to your brain and this is another reason why this electrical device works for relieving sciatica pain. You can make use of multiple electrode pads which allows you to spread the treatment process out while you target several areas or locations of pain.
In conclusion, ensure that you work closely with a medical doctor that will help you monitor the treatment.