Choosing the Right Tens Unit for you

right-tens-unitShould I use a tens unit?  Should it be digital or analog? What is EMS, Microcurrent, Interferential, and Russian Stim?  With so many options in the market place what is right for me?  Lets go over the basic types of home pain relief and tens units that are out in the market.

A tens unit which stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation has been typically used to disrupt or block the pain cycle.  This is done by delivering a painless sensation to the area of involvement that typically feels like a tingling or pins and needle sensation. This is done through pads or electrodes that are placed around the area of pain.   Basically the TENS Unit will change the way we feel the pain by closing the pain gate.  The stronger the Tens Unit  frequency the greater the chance that the body may release endorphins, which would act as natural pain killers to help relieve the pain feeling.


Tens units come in two main types: Digital or Analog.

An analog tens unit like the Tens 3000 found on Discount Medical Supplies is very quick to learn and easy to use.  Basically you are turning knobs instead of pushing buttons like on a digital screen.  This type of unit like the Tens 3000 is typically preferred by poeple not comfortable using computers or digital devices.

A Digital tens unit like the Tens 7000 is different from an analog tens unit since you are not turning knobs and buttons but are changing all of your settings on a digital screen.

An EMS unit or Electronic Muscle Stimulation uses electrical impulses to contract or stimulate muscles.  These EMS impulses are directed towards the body through sticky pads also known as electrodes.  EMS Units allow you to work, re-educate, or even tone muscles by its rythmic contractions. 

Microcurrent Electrical Nerve Stimulation devices, (MENS or Microcurrent are newer stimulation devices found on the market.  Microcurrent devices tend to deliver smaller amounts of electrical stimulation than do the standard TENS units.  The Microcurrent benefits are pain relief, muscle relaxation, increased circulation, and depending on the unit delayed wound healing, non-union fractures, as well as relief from nerve issues.   

Interferential current or IF is basically a deeper form of TENS. Basically, the IF modulates at a  higher frequency (4000 Hz) carrier waveform with the same signal that is produced by a TENS unit.  Therfore, the IF higher frequency carrier waveform will  penetrate the skin deeper than a regular TENS unit.  This will give the patient less discomfort for a higher level of stimulation.  In essence,  deep within the tissue, the carrier waveform would be cancelled out, which would result in a TENS like signal deeper under the tissue and skin.  This
will provide for greater pain relief than TENS, and could also be used effectively for management of post-surgical, post traumatic and chronic pain.  

Russian Stim is a specific type of electrical stimulation that uses medium frequencies to reduce muscle spasms, edema,  as well as for help in muscle strengthening. This was developed by the Russians for their Olympic Team to help their athletes increase their muscle mass and strength and is now used more widely in the US.

By going through all your choices on Tens unit types and electric stimulation you can now choose the best product for you on