Where to place tens unit pads


Using Your TENS Unit


TENS is short for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. The unit is used to stimulate nerves in the skin. This can result in pain relief either by reducing the number of pain signals reaching the brain, or by the production of the body’s own pain killing chemicals.


Side effects
control for channel 2
control for channel 1


The most common problem is a skin reaction to the electrodes. This is less likely to occur if the electrodes are not always put in exactly the same place. The skin should be checked regularly for any damage. Please take note of the instructions that are on the packet containing the electrodes.


Do not:
-use the unit while driving or operating machinery.
-place the electrodes on the front or sides of your neck.
-place the electrodes in your mouth or over your eyes.
-use the unit if you have a pacemaker
-use the unit if you have heart disease or problems with your circulation.
-use the unit on children, or during pregnancy, or if you have epilepsy, except with medical advice.


Setting up the TENS unit
The TENS unit can give different types of stimulation. You need to find the settings that are most helpful to you. There are two main ways to set up the unit.


Method 1
• Set up the machine as shown in the picture with two electrodes plugged into channel 1. Place these two electrodes on either side of the painful area. If the area is large, channel 2 could also be used, with its electrodes also placed on either side of the painful area.
• Set the middle switch to N (normal).
• Set the pulse width (left white dial) to 200μs.
• Set the pulse rate (right white dial) to 100Hz.
• Use the control dial for the channel to turn the unit on. Turn up the strength of the stimulation as high as you can comfortably bear.
• You should use the unit for at least 30 minutes at a time, and begin by using it 3 – 4 times a day. You
can build up to using the unit as often as you like, but have breaks and do not use it when sleeping at night.
• When you have finished using the unit, turn it off before removing the electrodes.


Pain relief will occur while you are using the unit. You may try using the TENS unit after swapping the positions of the red lead and the black lead, as this may improve the pain relieving effect.