Electrical Muscle Stimulation is an exceptional way to help the body in the healing process. This is accomplished by sending a very small electrical current into the affected soft tissue injury or muscle spasm. The therapy utilizes this current in an effort to help reduce swelling and release trigger points that may have the muscle locked up. It does this by helping the body to release natural relievers of pain often referred to as endorphins.
This is a great therapy if there is a spasm in a back or neck muscle. It works well in relaxing the muscle and allowing it to return to its normal state rather quickly. Short therapy sessions are excellent at facilitating healing from acute and chronic pain.
For more information, please continue to read below!
When dealing with acute, subacute and chronic pain, electrical stimulation is not the first solution that comes to mind for many sufferers. Instead, it is very common for people to ignore reoccurring back, neck, and joint discomfort for years and temporarily alleviate symptoms with medications without seeing a chiropractor.
Studies of analgesic medications reveal that these drugs do lessen the pain but they do not treat the source of the problem. Over time as the body develops a tolerance to painkillers, higher doses are required for relief. This means more physical dependence on medication, more side effects, and more toxins that the body has to combat as it tries to heal itself.
What is EMS and What Can it Do?
Electric muscle stimulation mimics the body's nervous system by sending safe, low frequency electrical pulses to the affected area, causing the muscle to contract and increasing temperature and blood circulation. The same natural process of the body to repair injuries works with EMS to relieve other common nervous system disorders, including constant headaches, numbness of limbs, and back pain.
By utilizing and encouraging the body's natural healing mechanisms, EMS and similar therapies can drastically reduce the dependence on medications and unnecessary surgeries and resolve the symptoms of underlying causes much quicker.
How Did EMS Originate?
For over two centuries, scientists have experimented with electricity in relation to human anatomy. According to the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, Luigi Galvani was one of the first physicians and physicists to suggest that electric currents have an effect on muscle tissue and response.
Although his theories were controversial, Galvani's experiments and those of his contemporaries, such as Alessandro Volta, and others after him, such as scientist Michael Faraday, paved the way for advancements in electrophysiology and neurology, fields of science that chiropractors study intensely in their coursework to understand the relationship and function of muscle groups and nerves in order to treat pain.
Electronic Muscle Stimulation
This type of therapy uses light electrical pulses that are transmitted to specific areas of the body through electrodes placed on the skin. There are many different types of electrical stimulation. Some are more beneficial for pain relief or to reduce inflammation, some for muscle spasm, and some actually cause muscles to contract in order to reduce muscle atrophy. Some have combination effects.
Common Questions Regarding Electro-Muscle Stimulation
What is Electro-Muscle Stimulation?
It is a special form of electrical current that is administered at the site of soft tissue injury, especially muscles, for the blocking of pain.
How does Electro-Muscle Stimulation work?
Small amounts of electrical current are induced into the tissues for the purpose of reducing swelling. This widely used technique safely strengthens muscles and helps reduce painful symptoms.
What does Electro-Muscle Stimulation feel like?
Patients generally feel a slight tingling sensation at first. Since your body may become accustomed to the initial setting, the intensity may be raised during the course of your 15-20 minute treatment, for maximum healing effect. EMS is intended to help, not hurt.
Why is Electro-Muscle Stimulation used?
Electro-Muscle Stimulation has been used as an effective form of pain relief. It is recommended in cases in which pain is accompanied by swelling, inflammation and pain radiation into the limbs.
Chiropractic Patient Benefits
· Reduces pain sensation
· Promotes general muscle tone
· Helps decrease swelling
· Speeds the healing process
Which Conditions Does This Sort of Therapy Treat?
Reputable research shows EMS is used to help treat and even prevent a surprising number of medical issues. These can include, but are not limited to:
- · carpal tunnel
- · connective and dermal tissue repair
- · increase in the range of motion in joints caused by such problems as arthritis and injury
- · muscle atrophy
- · muscle spasms
- · muscle tension associated with long periods of sitting, standing, or lifting heavy objects
- · post-surgical muscle regeneration
- · sciatica
- · sports injuries
- · tennis elbow
- · ulcers and chronic wounds
More Information on EMS
Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS), also known as neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) or electromyostimulation, is the elicitation of muscle contraction using electric impulses. The impulses are generated by a device and delivered through electrodes on the skin in direct proximity to the muscles to be stimulated. The impulses mimic the action potential coming from the central nervous system, causing the muscles to contract. The electrodes are generally pads that adhere to the skin. EMS is both a form of electrotherapy and of muscle training. It is cited by important authors as complementary technique for sport training, and there is published research on the results obtained. In the United States, EMS devices are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
In Chiropractic, EMS is used for rehabilitation purposes, for instance in the prevention of disuse muscle atrophy which can occur for example after musculoskeletal injuries, such as damage to bones, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons. However, this should not be confused with TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator): the use of electric current in pain therapy.
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