Period pain is expected as a normal part of the menstrual cycle. Women may experience periods with minimal discomfort to intense pain. It is often described as a throbbing or cramping pain in the lower abdomen, which can extend to the back and thighs. In addition, some period pain comes in strong spasms, while others may be dull and have continuous aches. Hence, severe period pain can disrupt daily activities. It can also be debilitating, causing women to miss work. Therefore, treatments are necessary to minimise discomfort. Many women take OTC medicines, use heat packs, or undergo Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS). Fortunately, TENS machines for period pain can naturally relieve pain without medicines.
Abdominal cramps start 1 to 3 days before the menstrual period and can last up to 72 hours after the onset of the period. Thus, some women seek sufficient pain relief to manage period pain when it occurs. Additionally, women may prefer TENS machines for period pain over period pain tablets to avoid harmful side effects. The iTENS wireless TENS device from iTENS Australia is a safe and convenient way to treat acute and chronic pain, including severe menstrual cramps.
How Period Pain Happens
Period pain occurs when the muscular wall of the uterus contract strenuously. Chemicals called prostaglandins trigger muscle contractions to help the uterus lining shed during periods. Additionally, it compresses blood vessels, cutting off the blood and oxygen supply to the womb. As a result, it causes dull aches, pressure, or pain in the lower abdomen, hips, lower back, and inner thighs. Moreover, period pain can differ between women. Severe cramps may include nausea, vomiting, headaches, and diarrhea. TENS machines for period pain can help relieve symptoms affecting different body parts. Furthermore, certain factors put higher risks for period pain:
- Nutrient deficiency
- Irregular menstrual bleeding
- Underlying health condition
- High estrogen levels
Kinds of Period Pain
A painful menstrual period is classified into primary and secondary dysmenorrhea. TENS machines for period pain are suitable for primary dysmenorrhea while seeking medical advice for secondary dysmenorrhea is essential before using TENS. Primary dysmenorrhea is common menstrual cramps that recur during periods and are not due to other disorders. Period pain may range from mild to severe and subsides one to two days after the period starts. Additionally, menstrual cramps may become less painful as a woman gets older or after having a baby. In contrast, secondary dysmenorrhea is an intense period due to a disorder or underlying gynecological conditions. It is less common than primary dysmenorrhea but may develop at any life stage. These conditions are:
- Endometriosis – cells similar to the endometrium, or the layer of tissue covering the inside of the womb, grows outside the uterus. Because these tissues bleed during the period, it can cause swelling and pain.
- Adenomyosis – when the inner lining of the uterus (endometrial tissue) breaks through the muscular wall of the uterus. It continues to act normally but can cause pressure to the lower abdomen, bloating, and cramps, resulting in heavy periods.
- Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) – infection of the female reproductive organ (uterus, fallopian tubes, or ovaries) caused by a sexually transmitted bacteria.
- Cervical stenosis – narrowing of the opening of the cervix that impedes menstrual flow.
- Uterine fibroids – non-cancerous growths in the wall of the uterus that can cause heavy and painful periods.
Using TENS Machines for Period Pain
It is common for some women to take oral painkillers to reduce period pain symptoms. These medicines block the production of prostaglandins to relieve pain temporarily. However, relying on it frequently may cause side effects, including acid reflux, constipation, dizziness, nausea, stomach ulcers, allergic reactions, and many more. Therefore, women opt for TENS therapy to relieve pain and discomfort without side effects. TENS machines for period pain help reduce severe cramping or throbbing sensations by applying mild electrical impulses from the electrodes to the nerves through the skin. It works under Pain Gate Control and natural painkiller release theories. TENS treatment using Pain Gate Control overrides the sensory nerves to block pain signals passing through the spinal cord from reaching the brain. Thus, the brain receives fewer pain messages to be transmitted to the body as pain.
TENS machines for period pain also work best by prompting the release of endorphins. Endorphins are neurotransmitters the brain release when the body feels stress or pain. Likewise, endorphins help block the nerve cells that receive the pain signals. As a result, it helps alleviate pain and promote pleasure. In addition, devices like the iTENS from iTENS Australia achieve pain relief similar to oral painkillers or anti-inflammatory drugs but without the risk of addiction. Moreover, a TENS machine operates on various stimulation levels to activate the body’s pain gate controllers (high-frequency) or induce endorphin release (low-frequency).
Kinds of TENS Machines for Period Pain
TENS therapy is a pain management technique common for people with acute and chronic pain. It utilises a battery-operated device connected to adhesive electrode pads. Physiotherapy clinics and treatment centres use traditional TENS machines, which are units connected through wires or lead cables. However, modern versions like the iTENS have wireless electrodes for convenient pad placement on the pain site. In addition, it is more compact due to the absence of connecting wires. You can buy these portable devices for personal or home use to treat various conditions. It is a non-invasive and practical tool with zero to minimal risks and does not interfere with other pain management methods. Therefore, women can use TENS machines for period pain daily until the symptoms pass.
Pain Management with a TENS Machine
Period pain is acute since it can last for a few days. However, dysmenorrhea can be uncomfortable, and causes some women to take a rest. TENS helps relieve pain by directing the electrical currents to the most painful area. Thus, using TENS machines for period pain enable women to alleviate painful contractions, ease sore muscles and allow movement. To start the treatment, place the TENS pads on the pain site and switch on the device. The machine creates tingling sensations as it passes through the skin. Then, start on a low setting and gradually increase it until it feels strong but comfortable. It is worth noting that TENS should not cause muscle contractions. Therefore, avoid turning the intensity too high that it causes discomfort and prevent overstimulation. Furthermore, some devices like the iTENS have pre-set modes for quick and easy pain treatment.
Period pain affects many areas; hence, the TENS pad placement is vital for optimal relief. Therefore, you may use TENS machines for period pain in multiple ways. The most effective pad placements for period pain are the following:
- Abdominal cramps – place the electrode pads on the pelvic region
- Lower back pain – place the electrode pads between the rib cage and the buttocks. However, avoid putting the pads directly over the spine.
- Headaches – position the electrode pads on the neck or shoulder beside the neck. Do not place the TENS pads directly on the head, spine, or throat.
How Long Can You Use a TENS Machine for Period Pain
TENS treatment varies with the pain condition. It is safe to use a TENS machine frequently as needed with no risk of overdose. Moreover, it is ideal to use TENS machines for period pain for 20 to 30 minutes. Then, you may extend the session to one hour should you need more time or if the pain is persistent. However, allow a twenty-minute interval for continuous treatment to avoid overstimulation. Furthermore, switch the device off and remove the pads during rest to prevent skin irritation. In addition, some users feel pain alleviation while using the device, while others experience lasting effects after the TENS session. Pain management can vary between individuals; thus, knowing how your body reacts to medical devices like TENS is important.
The Effectiveness of TENS Therapy
Women can relieve severe cramps and dull or numbing sensations by using TENS machines for period pain at the onset of a menstrual period—most period pains peak within the first day of the cycle. Therefore, having a TENS device ready can help reduce abdominal cramps or lower back pain. Furthermore, TENS therapy can give pain relief within ten minutes of application until several hours. Other users continue to experience adequate pain alleviation for up to twenty-four hours. Some studies suggest that repeated TENS sessions can increase the duration of pain relief. However, this may depend on several factors, like the severity of the condition, affected body area, and treatment intensity. Therefore, it is best to know these factors to achieve lasting pain relief.
iTENS: Wireless TENS Machine for Period Pain
TENS therapy helps people manage pain while enabling them to continue working or doing chores. A TENS machine is a wearable device you can use in the comfort of your home. Furthermore, wireless TENS machines for period pain, like the iTENS, maximise portability and ease of use. iTENS is the first FDA-cleared wireless TENS device for pain relief. It incorporates Bluetooth technology to deliver efficient pain management. Additionally, iTENS offers the following features:
- Smartphone connectivity – the wireless electrodes are Bluetooth-ready, allowing seamless connection to iOS or Android devices. Thus, you can control pain treatment from a smartphone instead of a wired handheld controller.
- Hypoallergenic gel pads – iTENS pads have a laser-printed silver conductive surface. It is hypoallergenic to minimise redness and harsh skin reactions. Likewise, the pads are reusable and flexible, with no wires restricting movement.
- Interchangeable pads – the iTENS device allows switching electrode pads in different sizes for use in various body areas.
- Pre-set modes – the iTENS app provides quick access to multiple programs based on body parts or health conditions.
- Custom treatment – create TENS settings by adjusting the parameters based on individual preference through the app’s manual mode.
- Energy-efficient battery – iTENS utilises rechargeable lithium-ion batteries with a 24-hour run time from a single full charge. Therefore, it avoids insufficient power and constant battery replacement.
- Standalone device – individuals can use the iTENS unit alone without opting to connect to a smartphone. However, the settings are limited.
Period Pain Relief Through the iTENS Smartphone App
A TENS machine delivers consistent pulses to stimulate the nerves for pain relief. Traditional devices have a connected controller to regulate the flow of electrical charges from the electrodes. However, some of these devices have limited settings or functionalities. On the other hand, the wireless iTENS utilise smartphone app features to deliver efficient pain management for a wide range of pain conditions. Thus, using TENS machines for period pain is more convenient through the iTENS app. First, pair the unit with the iTENS app via Bluetooth. Launch the app and choose the desired treatment from the menu. For period pain, you may select the program for abdominal cramps or lower back pain, whichever is more suitable. Alternatively, you can manually adjust the TENS settings by inputting the pulse rate, pulse width or duration, and waveform. Trying out various frequencies and intensities can help find the most effective results.
The iTENS app allows you to control the pain relief level from mild to severe pain. Therefore, you can apply the intensity that you are most comfortable with. However, the electrical stimulation should be strong but not uncomfortable. If it causes more pain, review the current settings and reduce accordingly. Furthermore, the iTENS wireless TENS machines for period pain can help you track usage time to help manage TENS sessions. As a result, you can avoid overstimulation or schedule TENS treatment at optimal times.
Advantages of Wireless TENS Machines for Period Pain
TENS therapy is a practical and cost-effective pain management method. Individuals who want to minimise intake of oral painkillers may use TENS machines for period pain. The wireless TENS device also provides the following advantages over other traditional pain relief methods:
- Risk-free – TENS does not develop adverse side effects despite long-term use. People with chronic pain can use a TENS machine many times a day.
- Non-invasive – the TENS pads adhere firmly but gently to the skin. It also does not involve intrusive procedures like acupuncture or surgery.
- Targeted pain relief – you can direct the electrical stimulation directly on affected nerves without affecting other areas.
- Reusable – the TENS pads are reusable for several applications, making them cost-efficient.
- Easy pad positioning – wireless electrodes like the iTENS enable convenient pad placement, especially in hard-to-reach areas.
- Complementary – TENS can be administered alone or in conjunction with other therapy methods without conflicts.
- Portable – the wireless iTENS is lightweight and discreet underneath the clothing. There are no wires sticking out, making the iTENS unnoticeable. Therefore, it can be used in most settings.
- Self-administered – TENS therapy does not require medical supervision or a prescription when purchasing.
- Easy to use – TENS machines are easy to operate and suitable for various conditions.
Other Uses of TENS Therapy
TENS is versatile pain management beneficial for wide aches and pain disorders. Thus, people can also use TENS machines for period pain to relieve symptoms of other conditions. A TENS device like the iTENS helps ease acute pain from sports injuries, post-surgery, and labour pain. The low soothing pulses can boost blood circulation, increasing the blood and oxygen flow necessary to rehabilitate damaged tissues, nerves, and sore muscles. Therefore, a TENS machine is excellent for facilitating quick recovery. Moreover, TENS therapy is also an excellent drug-free alternative for chronic conditions. It helps reduce symptoms of joint, nerve, and musculoskeletal pains. In particular, the wireless iTENS has pre-set modes for the following ailments:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Plantar fasciitis
- Endometriosis or pelvic pain
TENS Machines for Period Pain: Safety Guidelines
Although generally safe, medical devices like TENS machines for period pain require precautions. For instance, people with chronic or severe pain must consult their doctors for a proper diagnosis and treatment plans. Likewise, individuals with cancer, epilepsy, heart ailments, and electrical implanted devices like a cardiac pacemaker and defibrillator must refrain from using a TENS machine without medical guidance. Additionally, do not administer TENS therapy while sleeping, driving, operating machinery, or near water. Also, avoid placing the TENS electrode pads over the joints (kneecap, ankle, elbow), head, genitals, front and the sides of the neck, and the spinal cord. Lastly, do not put the pads on open wounds and numb skin or areas with less sensitivity.
For effective results, firmly press the electrode pad on clean and dry skin to seal them in place. However, check the skin area for signs of irritation while using TENS machines for period pain. If redness occurs, switch off the device and remove the pads. Wait for a few minutes, or try alternating the electrode pad placement. If skin irritation persists, discontinue use and consult your doctor. The iTENS wireless TENS device from iTENS Australia utilises hypoallergenic gel pads, reducing the probability of harsh or allergic skin reactions. Furthermore, ensure you do not set the intensity levels too high to make you uncomfortable.
iTENS Australia: Wireless Pain Relief Kits
TENS machines for period pain are available without a prescription. You may purchase a wireless TENS device at iTENS Australia online to help relieve period pain and other conditions. The iTENS wireless device has innovative wing-shaped interchangeable pads to allow versatile use in different areas. Moreover, iTENS Australia offers wireless iTENS pain relief kits and accessories in the following sizes:
- Large wings (16.5cm x 6.4cm): for broad pain coverage like the shoulders, lower back, and thighs.
- Small wings (14.0cm x 4.4cm): for tight or rotating body parts like the joints, arms, hands, and feet.
- Long strip-spare wings: provides TENS treatment for long-length pain like sciatica, painful IT band, tendons, or other pain that radiates downwards.
- Interchangeable wings: spare wings for small and large pads.
- Refill gel pads: each packet contains three sets of replaceable gel pads. One set of pads is good for 15 to 20 applications. In addition, the iTENS replacement pads are more low-cost than other TENS pads in the market.
TENS Machines for Period Pain: TENS Pad Maintenance
The iTENS electrode pads are usable for up to 20 applications before their adhesiveness wears off. Therefore, TENS machines for period pain are more cost-effective than other pain management methods. You may extend the life of the pads by applying them on dry skin free of body oil or lotion. In addition, TENS will accumulate gel pad residue as you peel it on and off. Thus, removing the residue can help restore the stickiness of the gel pads. You may clean the silver conductive surface of the iTENS wings with a damp cloth. Ensure not to submerge the entire device in water or other liquids to avoid damage to the electronics. Lastly, place the protective cover back on the pads after use and store them in a poly bag with the kit. However, once the pads have exhausted their adhesiveness, you can easily purchase replacements at iTENS Australia.
Best TENS Machines for Period Pain in Australia
TENS is an all-around and flexible method to manage pain safely and without harmful side effects. More people are searching for natural alternatives to reduce symptoms of various body aches or pain conditions. Additionally, women look towards TENS machines for period pain to manage severe cramps without taking medicines or visits to a doctor. It is also easy to use after the first try. To get the most effective results, consider these important aspects in selecting the best TENS device. Firstly, wired or wireless electrodes will significantly impact pain treatment. A wireless TENS unit like the iTENS offers more efficiency and comfort in treating debilitating period pain. Secondly, check the available treatment modes. More programs can help manage various pain situations. Lastly, interchangeable pads help treat several body parts optimally.
Period pain can be immobilising without adequate pain relief. Thus, women seek various pain management options to manage discomfort when it happens. Due to their safety and effectiveness in alleviating symptoms in acute and chronic conditions, TENS machines for period pain are also becoming the norm. You may get an FDA-cleared TENS unit like the iTENS to ensure safe use at iTENS Australia online. iTENS is an all-around pain management device that medical professionals and pain specialists trust.