Tens Unit For Feet: Is It Strong Enough For A Long-Term Relief?

BY WILLIAM BOZEMAN

May 8, 2023

/ Learn / Tens Unit For Feet: Is It Strong Enough For A Long-Term Relief?

Dealing with any kind of foot pain can be an incredibly frustrating experience. If you have an issue with your foot that’s causing pain, it can be easy to aggravate it every time you put pressure on it. As a result, foot pain can be highly debilitating since something as simple as standing or walking can cause pain. 

Fortunately, there are many treatment solutions when it comes to pain relief. One of those options is TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) therapy, which is commonly used to reduce the intensity of pain symptoms. Although TENS therapy can be effective for providing temporary pain relief, the real question is, can it provide long-term relief as well?

Common Causes Of Foot Pain

Before diving further into TENS therapy and whether it can help relieve foot pain, it helps to better understand what causes foot pain. For treatment of any kind to be effective over the long term, you need to be able to treat the underlying cause of the pain. With that in mind, the following are the most common causes of foot pain:

  • Plantar Fasciitis: Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissues that connect the heel to the toes. It can be caused by an injury or overexertion of the foot and can cause intense pain when walking or standing.
  • Bunions: Bunions are when the big toe starts to lean towards the other toes, causing a bump on the side of the foot, leading to pain and discomfort. This is often caused by wearing ill-fitting shoes and can lead to pain in the toe area.
  • Hammer Toes: Hammer toes are when the joints at the end of a toe become bent, causing intense pain with every step. Like bunions, hammer toes can result from wearing footwear that’s too tight for your feet.
  • Morton’s Neuroma: Morton’s neuroma is a condition where the tissues around a nerve in your foot thicken, leading to pain and tingling sensations. It can be caused by wearing narrow or pointed shoes that put too much pressure on the front of your foot.
  • Stress Fractures: Stress fractures can occur when the bones in your feet are weakened due to repetitive stress or trauma. Stress fractures are commonly caused by running or jumping on hard surfaces while wearing improperly cushioned shoes.
  • Achilles Tendinitis: Achilles tendinitis occurs when the Achilles tendon becomes inflamed, which can be caused by running on hard surfaces while wearing shoes that don’t provide enough support. It can also be caused by doing too much physical activity without properly stretching beforehand.
  • Gout: Gout occurs when uric acid crystals accumulate in the joints, which can cause pain, swelling, and redness. An unhealthy diet or lifestyle often causes gout, leading to intense foot pain.
  • Ingrown Toenails: Ingrown toenails are often caused by cutting your nails too short, wearing shoes that are too tight for your feet, or attempting to push a nail out from the side. This can cause intense pain and infection in the affected area.

Foot Pain And TENS Therapy

There are a lot of different conditions that can cause foot pain. TENS is a popular form of treatment because it’s non-invasive and drug-free. With that in mind, the following are a few things you should know about TENS therapy to better understand how it works:

How Does  A TENS Unit Work to Relieve Foot Pain?

TENS therapy works by sending tiny electrical pulses through the skin that stimulate nerve fibers, which can help to reduce pain signals from reaching the brain and stimulate the release of endorphins, which function like natural painkillers. This is done using a TENS unit, which delivers electrical stimulation via electrodes attached to the skin. The electrical pulses can also provide a soothing massage-like sensation to the foot, which can help relax the muscles and reduce tension, thereby reducing stiffness and pain.

Benefits Of TENS Unit For Feet

The following are a few of the reasons why TENS therapy is so effective at providing temporary relief from foot pain:

  • Flexibility: With a TENS unit, you can control the intensity and duration of the treatment. This allows you to adjust it according to your level of pain or discomfort.
  • Increase Circulation And Reduce Inflammation: Many conditions that cause foot pain, like gout, are at least partially a cause of inflammation. TENS can help to increase blood circulation and reduce inflammation, which can help alleviate foot pain.
  • Improve Range Of Motion: By massaging the muscles and tendons in your feet, a TENS unit can help reduce pain and stiffness associated with conditions like plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis, which can improve your range of motion.

Is TENS Strong Enough To Relieve The Foot Pain?

TENS therapy can be pretty effective when it comes to temporary pain relief. As such, it’s suitable for acute conditions that cause foot pain. However, TENS therapy simply isn’t strong enough to provide long-term relief from more chronic foot conditions. This is because TENS therapy uses low-voltage electrical stimulation to provide relief, and it can’t penetrate deep enough into the tissues to address the underlying cause of the pain.

A regular TENS unit can only deliver electrical currents up to 400 pulses per second, and the at-home TENS units available on the market can only deliver upwards of 250 pulses per second. So if you’re suffering from severe pain or a chronic foot condition, getting TENS therapy is more akin to getting a nice foot massage. It may feel good for a moment but won’t last.

How Relatyv Approaches Foot Pain

At Relatyv, we firmly believe that electrical stimulation can be highly effective at helping patients manage their foot pain. It’s why electrical stimulation is a critical component of our Relatyv protocol, which implements a Neurofunctional Pain Management approach to treating chronic pain. This means that instead of just addressing the symptoms, we focus on the underlying cause. 

We also emphasize a whole-person approach to treatment to help you manage your condition over the long term; all without relying on potentially addictive pain medications, risky chiropractic treatments, or invasive and expensive surgical procedures. Keeping this in mind, the following are the treatment solutions we provide when treating chronic foot pain:

Electroanalgesia

At Relatyv, we use electroanalgesia to target the deeper tissue of your foot and reduce pain while improving circulation and reducing inflammation. Like TENS therapy, electroanalgesia is a form of electrical stimulation therapy to help block pain signals and stimulate the release of endorphins. 

However, unlike TENS therapy, electroanalgesia delivers high-pulse currents that provide deep penetration and targeted relief. It’s much more effective than TENS therapy because electroanalgesia machines can deliver electrical currents at up to 10,000 pulses per second. Unlike TENS, electroanalgesia therapy can’t be used at home and is only administered by trained professionals.

IV Therapy

As part of our whole-person approach, we combine electroanalgesia with IV therapy. This specialized nutrient-replenishing treatment helps reduce inflammation and nerve damage. IV therapy delivers powerful, highly concentrated solutions filled with essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants directly into the bloodstream. This helps to reduce foot pain caused by inflammation or nerve damage and helps to speed up the healing process.

Lifestyle Counseling

Finally, we provide lifestyle counseling to help you make the necessary adjustments to ensure long-term foot pain relief. This includes providing advice on nutrition, exercise, and stress reduction techniques as well as providing guidance on how to care for your feet properly. By helping you make the necessary lifestyle adjustments, we can help to reduce and manage your foot pain over the long term.

Take A Step Towards A Pain-Free Life With Relatyv

At Relatyv, we specialize in providing effective, long-term relief from chronic foot pain. By combining electrical stimulation, IV therapy, and lifestyle counseling, we can help you appropriately manage your condition without relying on potentially addictive pain medications or invasive surgical procedures. So, if you’re suffering from foot pain and looking for long-term relief, contact Relatyv today to take the first step to a life free of chronic foot pain.

About the Author

Will is a healthcare executive, innovator, entrepreneur, inventor, and writer with a wide range of experience in the medical field. Will has multiple degrees in a wide range of subjects that give depth to his capability as an entrepreneur and capacity to operate as an innovative healthcare executive.


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