What are TENS and EMS and how are they used?
TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Neural Stimulation) and EMS (Electrical Muscle Stimulation) utilize electrical currents flowing through electrodes placed on the body to create a physiologic change in the underlying tissues.
TENS is a typically a higher frequency current that primarily affects the nervous system and causes little to no muscular activity, or a very slow fequency current with a bit more power that will cause some mild musclar contraction. The primary goal of a TENS tretament is to reduce the level of perceived pain in an injured area, which may allow a client to return to function with less pain or may facilitate further therapeutic interventions for the client with less discomfort.
EMS treatment is focused on directly stimulating the underlying msucular structures. Higher power levels combine with frequencies in the range that promote msucle contraction are used. This can be used to fatigue a tight muscle to promote muscle relaxation, help break up scar tissue adhesions, restore lost joint motion through directed muscular contractiosn into the joint restriction, increase blood flow through creating an oscillating pumping action fo muscular contractions in an area, and relieve pain through general desensitization of the area from the direct stimulation to the muscles.
Both types of treatment can be beneficial to many types of injury, and we tend to use them in addition to our other methods of treating your injuries to help control both the injury pain and the discomfort which can be caused from treating the injury.