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AU Registered Medical Device
12-month warranty
Same day dispatch
Professionally endorsed

Period Pain Relief Device: A Guide on How to Use TENS to Alleviate Menstrual Cramps

A woman clutching her abdomen due to period pain while in bed

Many women deal with the discomfort of period cramps every month. Fortunately, there is a Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation or TENS period pain relief device. It dispatches electrical pulses to the body. Consequently, this pulse therapy can interrupt pain signals and prompt endorphin release. Furthermore, using a TENS unit is straightforward. Initially, locate the treatment area (lower back or abdomen) and prepare the skin. Then, position the pads. Finally, turn on the device and adjust the settings.

Menstrual pain is a common issue that affects many women. Painful cramps can impact daily activities and the overall quality of life. Traditional solutions for period cramps may include heat packs, compression pads, and medicines. However, they often have side effects or limitations. Meanwhile, TENS therapy is a promising solution for period cramps. It is safe and effective in managing painful periods. This article will present the TENS period cramp relief device, how it works, and how to use it.

What is a TENS Period Pain Relief Device?

Menstrual cramps, scientifically known as dysmenorrhoea, occur when the uterus contracts to shed its lining. It often results in throbbing or cramping discomfort in the lower abdomen. These pains can vary from mild pain to severe pain. Nevertheless, it is a common part of the menstrual cycle for many individuals. Fortunately, the TENS period cramp machines can provide instant relief.

The TENS period pain relief device employs low-voltage electrical currents to the body. It streams the pulses through electrodes attached to the skin. Accordingly, teenagers and adults experiencing premenopausal symptoms commonly use TENS units. Medical professionals and clinics often recommend TENS therapy as a safe and effective solution to period cramps.

TENS units come in both wired and wireless models. Thus, it offers flexibility and convenience to suit various lifestyles and preferences. The wired types typically include a central machine connected to electrodes via physical wires. Meanwhile, wireless models offer a more discreet, cable-free experience. The electrodes connect directly to a smartphone app or a small remote control for operation.

Causes of Menstrual Cramps

  • Uterine contractions: The primary function of the uterus during menstruation is to contract to help shed its lining.
  • Increased prostaglandin production: Prostaglandins are chemicals that trigger muscle contractions, inflammation, and discomfort. High levels of prostaglandins are associated with more severe cramps or intense pain.
  • Endometriosis pain: As the lining of the uterus breaks down and sheds, it can cause significant discomfort.
  • Pelvic pain or Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID): It is an infection of the female reproductive organs. It can cause persistent menstrual pain.
  • Cervical stenosis: A narrow cervix can sometimes hinder menstrual flow. It causes a build-up of pressure and discomfort.

A woman using TENS on her lower back

How Does a TENS Period Pain Relief Device Work?

TENS period pain relief devices operate through various mechanisms. Firstly, the electrical pulses from TENS stimulate the production and release of endorphins. These are the natural pain-relieving chemicals of the body. Endorphins interact with receptors in the brain and spinal cord to reduce the perception of pain levels. Also, it triggers a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine.

Secondly, the Pain Gate Theory. The TENS unit delivers electrical currents that activate non-pain-carrying nerves. These nerves then send their signal to the brain faster than those that carry pain signals. Because the brain can only process limited sensory information, the non-painful impulses essentially “close the gate” to painful input. Thus, it prevents the brain from receiving the full extent of period cramps.

The electrical pulses from TENS can also encourage blood flow to the targeted area. Enhanced blood circulation helps in two ways: it supplies more oxygen and nutrients to the muscles and helps in the efficient removal of waste products and toxins. Specifically for menstrual cramps, the improved blood flow can help relax the contracting muscles of the uterus.

Benefits of TENS Therapy

TENS pulse therapy offers a variety of benefits. Foremost, TENS provides relief without incisions, injections or ingesting medication. It is particularly appealing to those who prefer not to rely on pharmaceuticals. Additionally, TENS units offer customisable settings. It allows users to adjust the frequency, intensity, and duration of the stimulation according to specific needs.

Using a TENS unit to provide relief from cramps can be a cost-effective solution in the long term. Once purchased, the device can be used repeatedly. Furthermore, TENS therapy can be used in conjunction with other pain management strategies. It can complement heat packs and exercises.

A guide on how to use the iTENS app

How to Use a TENS Period Pain Relief Device

First, ensure the TENS period pain relief device is fully charged or has fresh batteries. Accordingly, prepare the skin where to attach the electrodes. It is usually the lower back or abdomen. Then, peel off the protective film from the electrodes and press them firmly onto the skin. Follow the proper pad placement for effective positioning. Next, connect the electrodes to the central machine or a smartphone for wireless.

Afterwards, turn on the TENS device. Start with the lowest settings and gradually increase until a solid but comfortable tingling sensation occurs. This step is crucial; the sensation should be noticeable but not painful. Adjusting the settings helps users find the most effective combination for their specific type of period pain. Also, some units have pre-set programs that directly target period cramps.

Users can use the device continuously or for set periods depending on specific needs and recommendations. Some people benefit from continuous low-level use throughout the day. Meanwhile, others prefer dedicated sessions ranging from 20 to 30 minutes. Nevertheless, it is essential to take breaks for longer sessions. After the session, turn off the TENS device and remove the electrodes.

Pad Placement

Before applying the pads, it is essential to clean the skin area. It ensures adhesion and conductivity. Accordingly, the recommended placement for period pain generally focuses on the lower abdomen or lower back area. Proper placement is crucial for the effectiveness of TENS therapy. Placing the pads symmetrically on either side of the pain site is advised.

Additionally, ensure proper spacing between the electrode pads. This is to distribute the electrical impulses evenly. Furthermore, do not place the electrodes directly on the spine, broken skin, or open wounds. Moreover, users can adjust the placement to ensure maximum comfort and effectiveness.


In conclusion, uterine contractions, increased prostaglandin production, PID, endometriosis, and cervical stenosis are the common causes of menstrual cramps. Fortunately, the TENS period pain relief device is a highly effective method for providing relief. It employs electrical currents to the nerves via electrodes attached to the skin. This electrical stimulation can prevent pain signals from reaching the brain. Also, it triggers the production of endorphins and improves blood flow.

Furthermore, TENS therapy offers a variety of benefits. It provides relief without medications or invasive procedures. Additionally, it is customisable, cost-effective, and can complement other modalities. Moreover, using the device is easy. Prepare the skin in the treatment area. Then, attach the electrode pads and turn on the device. Finally, adjust the settings or choose a pre-set program. However, proper pad placement is crucial. For period pain, individuals can position the pads on the lower abdomen or lower back.

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