Table of Contents
- Knowledge about TENS
- Best TENS and EMS Combo units
- Best of the Best Top-Notch TENS Units
- Best of the Best Mid-Price Pocket-Sized TENS Units Between $50-$100
- Best of the Best Inexpensive TENS Units Under $50
- Step-by-Step Guide for Choosing the Best TENS Units
Are you looking for the best of the best for both TENS and EMS stimulating units? Look no farther than right here. We offer the most technically advanced Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) and Electric Muscle Stimulation (EMS) in one fantastic unit. When you have sore and aching muscles, the EMS will help alleviate your pain. When your nerves are making you hurt, the EMS will provide pain relief.
With many choices for a first-time buyer, you might become frustrated wondering what the best unit is for your condition. We are here to help you overcome the unfamiliar technical terminology with our explanations for each unique unit. The robust small units have adjustable settings that are user friendly. You can also program your personal preferences or use the preset functions. Some units are portable so that you can put in your pocket or purse and take with you to the office or when traveling.
With the information and pictures you will be able to select a TENS/EMS stimulator with no worries.
TENS & EMS Combo
Knowledge about TENS
What is a TENS Unit?
The TENS is a device that uses electrical current for stimulating nerves for healing benefits and the restorative nerve conditions that can be inflamed. User’s age range from 25 to 65+ years old. Men are 41.1% of the users and women are 58.9%. Chiropractors use the TENS and they bring considerable welcomed relief to affected areas of the body, particularly the lower back. The electrical nerve stimulation uses low voltage current (microamps) for pain relief. Transcutaneous means through the skin. Therefore, the soothing vibration passes through the skin by using pads that stick to the skin. Nothing pierces the skin. It is similar to an EKG machine where pads are placed on the skin with a self-adhesive pad to chart heart activity.
The pulses produced by the TENS portable stimulator unit treats unbearable pain. Usually 2-4 electrodes are attached to the self-adhesive pads and attached to the area needing treatment. The devices are battery operated and electricity being plugged into a 120-Volt outlet. The unit regulates frequency, Intensity, and pulse width. These frequencies can be low less than 10 Hz or higher greater than 50 Hz. At high frequency with its intensity below motor (muscle) contraction, i.e., intense perception, or low frequency where the perception is felt as a slight motor (muscle) contraction. Thus, it is felt as a contraction followed by relaxation, then contraction and continues in that sequence. The bioelectric current from the units promote natural pain relief and stimulate the production of endorphins, the brain’s natural painkiller.
What Type of Pain is TENS Used for?
TENS units are used for many conditions to include:
- Back pain
- Neck and Shoulder Pain
- Heel Pain
- Elbow Pain
- Wrist pain
- Muscle pain
- Joint pain
- Labor pain
- Foot pain
- Knee pain
- Ankle Pain
- Hip pain
- Heel pain
- Cancer pain
- Menstrual pain
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Sports injuries
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Peripheral nerve injuries
- Whiplash injuries
- Trigeminal neuralgia
- Post-Operative Pain
- Phantom limp pain
- Neuropathic Pain
- Chronic Pain
- Calf Strain
- Period Pains
- Pregnancy/ Labour Pains
- Cervical pain
You should see quick results with your pain. The TENS unit can stay on your body areas for many hours each day for remarkable alleviation of your pain and stressed areas.The TENS unit is dependable for quick relief for chronic and acute pain. The units are portable and you can take them with you to work or when traveling. The electrotherapy focuses on the area where you place the self-adhesive pads. Doctors, sports coaches, pain clinics, massage and physical therapists use the units largely and endorse individual home use. You will not experience side effects and are nothing like painkillers that dull your mind. Some people have been able to discontinue pain medication when they use the TENS units for muscle and nerve discomfort.
How Does the TENS Unit Work?
Nothing mysterious happens using TENS. You will feel impulses known as ‘pulses’ that stimulate the nerve endings causing pain. Depending on the person, pain can be reduced or eliminated. Find the mode on your and adjust the functions according to your personal condition.
A lower frequency stimulations is termed acupuncture and might be somewhat uncomfortable and is tolerated for 20 to 30 minutes; however, pain relief is for a much longer time. The higher frequency is standard and is bearable for hours yet the pain relief is for a shorter time. You will determine what is best for your pain after using a few times.
With the unit’s pads attached to your skin surface, you can decide on whether you want to purchase a unit with a large amount of power output or one of the small battery powered hand-held or even desktop-sized units. Some units can be put in a pocket or attached with a belt clip.
Units are single or dual channel. The two-cannels allow you to cover more body areas. The dual channel devices have variations in pulse width from 40-260 and impulse rates from 2-150. The treatment session can be timed from 30-60 minutes or constant with the timer mode. Units can have a lithium battery, 9-Volt, or AAA-sized batteries, and some are only electric. Some units have carrying cases and some do not.
The pads have an adhesive gel so that you do not have to use lotions, gels, or oils for attachment. The pre-applied gel from the manufacturer increases the conductivity from the electrodes to your skin surface. You will need to use an alcohol swab or alcohol from a bottle with cotton to clean the area to be treated. The pads stick better and work better when there are no body oils, dirt, or perspiration on the surface.
The pulses produced by the portable stimulator treats pain. Usually 2-6 electrodes are attached to the self-adhesive pads and attached to the area needing treatment. The TENS units are battery operated with different battery sizes noted above. The unit regulates frequency, Intensity, and pulse width. These frequencies can be low at less than 10 Hz or greater than 50 Hz. The unit operates at a high frequency with its intensity below motor (muscle) contraction, i.e., intense perception, or low frequency where the perception is felt as a slight motor (muscle) contraction. It is felt as a contraction followed by relaxation, then contraction, and continues in that sequence. The sensation is a mild tingling effect, is soothing, and reduces pain and tight muscles from over activity or strain.
Pain is reduced at nerve endings to minimize diabetes neuropathy, tension and migraine headaches, pain associated with cancer, inflammation, spinal pain conditions, range of motion will increase, and sleeping will be improved.
Differences Between TENS and EMS Units
Both units use low voltage (microamps) electrical impulses to stimulate body areas. A TENS unit stimulates the nerve endings while the EMS unit stimulates the muscles. Electrical energy in microamps (μA) means that the TENS unit uses impulses from 50 to 1000 μA. EMS electrical impulses range from 1 to 30 μA. This is technical electrical information that simply means this low amount of current is beneficial but is not similar to an electrical shock. The devices are beneficial for relief from acute and chronic pain and EMS units are good for muscles. Dual units are available and those with chronic pain use both for best results. Therefore, the reduction of pain using the TENS and the stimulation of muscles at the cell level provides the best of both worlds. You will want a professional to monitor you to be sure the electrodes are placed correctly and that you are using the proper signal. The electrodes vary with their placement with each treatment.
EMS units are used for many conditions to include:
- Rehabilitation purposes
- Muscle strengthening
- Relaxation of muscles
- Preventing disuse muscle atrophy
- Increasing local blood circulation
- Cosmetic facial muscle toning
We provide for you the features of the top best rated TENS units available in the marketplace for an informed decision when purchasing a TENS or perhaps the EMS unit for your personal purposes. We hope our descriptions and articles help you to make an informed decision for deciding what to buy for your ideal pain relief.
Best TENS and EMS Combo units
|8 Modes (TENS)|
6 Modes (EMS)
|4||25||3xAAA Batteries||3 Years|
|7 Modes (TENS) |
6 Modes (EMS)
|4||25||3xAAA Batteries||1 Year|
1. PurePulse™ Duo EMS & TENS Combo Device
The PurePulse™ Duo EMS and TENS is a combination stimulation unit that offers you the best of both worlds. A TENS unit stimulates the nerve endings while the EMS unit stimulates the muscles. Use the advanced technology and great design for home, office, and travel. It is small enough to fit into a pocket or purse. Your therapy will have the same excellence as that of a chiropractor, massage, or physical therapist. Save your money visiting them and invest in this fine unit.
Our PurePulse™ Duo EMS and TENS Combo Device is FDA approved so that you do not need a prescription when purchasing this over-the-counter unit. It is verified clinically that it relieves pain, increases blood flow circulation, and works wonders stimulating and exercising muscles. A great feature is that you are able to use two different intensity levels at the same time.
- The TENS has 8 preset programs and the EMS has 6 present programs. The unit has dual channels for intensity levels on each channel.
- The liquid crystal display (LCD) clearly reveals the selected program, intensity level, therapy method chosen for TENS and EMS, and time left for your treatment.
- There are 25 intensity levels from which to choose for your needs.
- The timer adjusts from 5-60 minutes so you can set it for the time you want for each session. It has a 60-second automatic shutdown that helps to sustain the life of the batteries.
- The EMS stimulates and exercises your muscles, exercise preparation, endurance building, muscle strengthening, and endurance building. Additionally, it can be operated to increase local blood circulation, muscle spasms, and to increase range of motion.
The box has a PurePulse™ Duo EMS & TENS Combo Device unit, 4 standard 2×2-inch self-adhesive electrode pads that are great for small areas such as your neck and lower arms. Two each 5×3.5-inch butterfly pads for large muscle groups for example, your back, legs, buttocks, and abdomen; 2 lead connection wires; 3 AAA batteries; and a handsome premium storage and carrying bag. You will like the 7-part video series by a renowned physical therapist on how to use the device, muscle stimulation, training advice, pain management best practices, pain-relieving exercises and more. A 3-year warranty is included. The item weighs 12.8 ounces and is the size of a small MP3 player.
2. iReliev TENS™ + EMS Combination Unit
The extraordinary iReliev TENS™ + EMS combines two therapies into one. The EMS unit stimulates muscles and the TENS unit excites nerve endings. One convenient unit with two wonderful functions. The TENS is created and designed to prevent nerve pain signals from going to the brain while increasing the brain chemical neurotransmitter, endorphin levels. With high levels of endorphins, we feel less pain and the negative effects of stress. Exercise can increase endorphins and the TENS enhances this function as well.
- Separate channel controls are provided for left (CH1) and right (CH2) sides to treat different areas simultaneously.
- The unit has 7 + 11 pain relief functions being the iReliev TENS™ mode P1 through P7. These numbers have different frequencies and pulse widths affording you relief for acute and/or chronic pain. The Arthritis TENS mode is P8 for best benefits.
- The device comes with 6 EMS functions one being Muscle Performance Therapy that helps muscle contraction and relaxation with the unit’s bioelectrical impulses. EMS P1 through P6 can increase strength that serves as a rehabilitation means to include benefits after you work out.
- For treating two areas at one time, use 2 small pads or 1 large pad for one area, or for both channels, use 4 small pads or 2 large. You are able to treat 2 people simultaneously that is perfect when relaxing with a spouse or friend.
Chiropractors, physical and massage therapists have used this drug-free pain relief for over 30 years. iReliev TENS™ produces low microamp rhythmic pulsations to the skin stimulating nerves blocking your pain to your brain. If you take pain medication, maybe you can do away with it.
To recap, there are 14 therapy modes. The TENS has 7 Pain Relief Modes, 1 Arthritis TENS mode and 6 EMS Muscle Strength and Recovery modes. The EMS is also known by neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES). Neuro means nerve and with the muscular aspect of EMS, it serves as strength training and benefits athletes after surgery, being a powerful physical rehabilitation implement.
Endorsed by Joseph Noel, Physical Therapist, who shares: “TENS and EMS has been used for decades. iReliev is an RX strength TENS and EMS that is effective for pain relief and muscle conditioning. I have found iReliev safe, easy to use, and would recommend.”
The unit features 25 levels of 80 mA intensity, a 5-60-minute timer that you can adjust; it has a lockout utility so that the functions cannot change when carrying in a pocket or purse.
In the box you will receive the iReliev TENS™ + EMS Combination Unit Muscle Stimulator unit, 3 AAA batteries, 4 lead wires 48-inches long, 8 premium 2-inch square pads, 4 extra-large EMS premium pads, a tote bag with draw strings, a belt clip and holster, and a quick-start guide with User’s Manual. The unit is the size of a credit card and you will receive a 1-year warranty.
3. HealthmateForever® Best Touch Screen T12A - 12 Modes
The HealthmateForever® unit is an upgraded and advanced version that is FDA approved. The earlier models won rave reviews and this one is even better! The hand-held TENS provides the bioelectrical pulse massager and is small enough to put in your pocket or handbag. The two distinct and separate channels function to give you double the relaxation and pain relief by utilizing the dedicated channels to apply the self-adhesive electrode pads to two different body areas. This dual functioning device is like having two units in one saving you time.
Wonderful for spinal area muscle pain, lower back, calves, thighs, and better circulation, this TENS unit is great for toning triceps, deltoids, biceps—the upper arm muscles, and your abdominal area. Our long-life snap-on non-woven fabric self-adhesive pads are flexible to easily fit small and large areas of your body. Because the pads are self-adhesive, you will never need to put gels or lotions on them. Simply put a few drops of water on the pads and they will stick. It is advised you use an alcohol swab to remove any dirt, oil, or perspiration that can prevent pads from sticking. Use the alcohol pads again on your skin when you are finished with your therapy.
- The large first-ever touch screen is for selecting your modes and has a channel lock/unlock function to lock the screen preventing loss of information you programmed.
- Channel A and B maintain their own separate intensity modes.
- With other units, you need to press the ‘M’ button to get to a mode. With this unit, you simply click the mode you want. No more clicking the ‘M’ button 12 times if you want mode 12.
- Programs can be briefly halted using the pause button.
- The case is great looking in stainless steel with the manufacturer’s logo engraving on the back.
- A larger lithium battery is built-in and the unit is about iPhone size.
- The device provides 20 levels of intensity and each channel operates as you choose. Each channel is independent of one another.
- The liquid crystal display (LCD) is backlit for using in low light or in the dark.
- A battery level indicator lets you know when the battery is running low. You can probably tell by your stimulation effects feeling less strong than before.
- The timer has 2 functions one being massage time and the battery charging time.
- You are able to set the timer up to 80 minutes.
- Output Pulse Width: 100μS ± 15%
- Pulse Frequency: <100 Hz
- Max Output Amplitude: <5v r=”” s=”” m=”” – 5v – =””>
- Input Voltage: DC5V
- Rated Current: ≤ 50 mA
- Rated Power: ≤ .25W
- 3.5 mm Plug
- Screen Size: 1.5″ W x 2″ T
- Size: 1.75″ L x 3.5″ W x .25″ T
- Weight: 1.8 oz.
You will receive in the box the HealthmateForever® Best Touch Screen unit in a lidded box, 1 touch pen, 2 self-adhesive electrode leads, 1 USB computer charger, 1 A/C adapter for internarial traveling that is 110/240-Volts to be plugged into a standard wall outlet, 1 pair small pads, 1 pair large pads, 1 pair XL pads, 1 electrode pad holder, 1 acupuncture placement point chart, a free illustrated educational reference booklet and one User’s Manual and a lifetime warranty.
Best of the Best Top-Notch TENS Units
1. trūMedic® TM-1000PRO Deluxe TENS Unit for Pain Relief
This very simple to use device has high-end technology. The TENS provides pain relief for all muscles except your head. The user friendly TENS can be used for long times for your treatment, with a fully rechargeable battery, many pre-set programs and manual functions you can create as well. You do not have to be a rocket scientist to understand its operations. You will be using it right out of the box in no time. Everyone feels pain differently and some have more pain tolerance than others do. This unit will give you multiple ranges to control the unit to you and your needs. The trūMedic® TM-1000PRO Deluxe unit has digital controls for left and right channels and 20 power levels from mild to extremely powerful anytime anywhere.
You might like to give this to someone who suffers from bursitis or sciatica among other muscle pains. It is packaged in a lovely gift box that can be reused or send to someone as a gift.
- Buttons are clearly labeled in English and the unit is digitally controlled.
- Words are straightforward such as “joint,” “shoulder,” or “back.”
- Intensity is simple with push button increments from very mild (1) to very powerful (20). Find your comfort zone and set it.
- Approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for home use with no drugs involved for use, it is sold for over-the-counter purchase.
- Works for up to two hours per therapy session to relieve pain and stimulate your muscles and relax.
- Lightweight and about the size of a remote control unit, take it anywhere with its built-in Li-ion cells that are rechargeable.
- The backlit LCD (liquid crystal display) screen is easy to read with simple to operate large buttons and shows your status to include massage, knead, or beat functions and time remaining for your current session.
- To adjust the speeds on this, push the button with the ± (plus/minus) on it. The plus sign makes the pulse faster and a little more intense. The minus sign makes it slower and lowers the intensity.
In the box are 4 electrode pads, 2 electrode lead wires, 1 USB wire, 1 A/C adapter, and it includes a free bonus of an extra set of 4 electrodes and a yoga video series. It also includes a PDF worksheet and an MP3 audio file for listening anywhere. You will appreciate the handy zippered carrying pouch for taking with you. You will receive a User’s Manual with a full parts and labor warranty for 1-year. The dimensions are 6 x 1.8 x 0.5 inches and it weighs a slight 4 ounces.
2. FDA Cleared HealthmateForever® TENS Unit Pro12AB
The FDA Cleared HealthmateForever® TENS Unit Pro12AB in a striking silver color is a 2-in-1 double value having 12 modes for the best electrotherapy around. Because it is FDA approved, you do not need a prescription and you can purchase it over the counter at Amazon!
Programmable from 10 up to 80 minutes, this unit will give you plenty of time for your therapy session. With 2 modes to benefit you and 12 preprogrammed massage modes that are in a rectangle format, this upgraded device now includes 2 new modes. The two separate modes of ‘A’ and ‘B’ support the intensity of your session. For example, you can decrease or increase the intensity by pressing the A/B channel with the shift key. You are able to administer treatment to different muscle areas at the same time to save time.
- The LCD (liquid crystal display), not LED (light emitting diodes) animated display is backlit for ease in viewing the screen. The back light is helpful when you are in low light settings or in the dark of your bedroom.
- The display shows you the battery level with its indicator and you will no doubt realize the lithium battery is low when stimulation is not as strong as before so it will need to be recharged. This is shown with a bar graph not numbers that is visually easy to understand. The lithium battery charge lasts about 15 hours and then drops by one bar and that is exceptional. This depends on how you use it as well.
- The timer has 2 functions: one indicates the battery charging time and the other reveals the massage time you have set.
- Programmed into the unit are the Tuina (Push & Pull), Acupuncture, Tapping, Guasha (Scraping), Cupping, Shiatus (Finger Press), Pressure, Back Pain, Deep Tissue Massage, Body Building, Weight Loss and Combination.
- This unit has a pause button, 20 levels of adjustable strength and intensity settings, and you can tailor the intensity for each output terminal to your desires.
- You can use 4 pads at the same time for a zealous therapy session.
This marvelous device is a full-body bioelectrical muscle stimulator wonderful for injuries, and after surgery recovery rehabilitation. Acupuncture can be done with this multi-purpose unit. It will relieve pain from fibromyalgia, arthritis, plantar fasciitis, lower back pain, cervical and lumbar spine and muscle pain. In your own home you can use your hands for other things, relax, or nap with the unit for deep muscle therapy. Save money by not visiting a massage or physical therapist with your own stimulator. No drugs are involved, and if you do take medication, maybe you can do away with it.
The HealthmateForever® muscle stimulator TENS is a leader with customers who have conditions such as tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, bursitis, tendonitis, sciatica, neuropathy, and some inflammations.
To let you know how safe it is, the manufacturer complies with many standards for risk and safety: FDA guidance of TENS and Powered Muscle Stimulator. IEC60601-1, IEC60601-1-2, IEC60601-2-10, ISO10993-5, and ISO10993-10. This home use medical device operates in accordance with International Standard ISO 14971 – Medical Devices – Application of Risk Management to Medical Devices.
The self-adhesive electrode pads are great for lower back and spine pain, lower leg calves, upper thighs to increase circulation of the body’s essential flow of water, blood, and lymph the immune system fluid and helps to collect unwanted toxins and materials from your body. The unit is impressive for toning muscles at your abdomen area, to include your upper arm muscles being triceps, deltoids, and biceps. Put it on your sore gluteus maximus/medius and fascia lata in the outer thigh muscles for soothing relief.
- Output Pulse Width: 100μS ± 15%
- Pulse Frequency: <100 Hz
- Max Output Amplitude: <5v r=”” s=”” m=”” – 5v – =””>
- Input Voltage: DC 5V
- Rated Current: ≤ 50 mA
- Rated Power: ≤ .25W
- 3.5 mm Plug
- Screen Size: 1.5″ W x 2″ T
- Size: 1.75″ L x 3.5″ W x .25″ T
- Weight: 1.8 oz.
In the box you will receive the HealthmateForever® TENS Unit Pro12AB unit, 2 pair of snap-on combination self-adhesive electrode pads 2-1/2-inches square, 2 electrode lead wires, 1 USB cord for charging from your computer, 1 A/C adapter for international travel that is 110/240-Volts to be plugged into a standard wall outlet, a holder for wires and pads, 1 acupuncture point placement chart, a bonus free illustrated educational reference booklet, and a User’s Manual. It does not have an ear clip or belt clip. The device has a lifetime warranty and a card to that effect is included.
Best of the Best Mid-Price Pocket-Sized TENS Units Between $50-$100
|8 Modes||4||30||3xAAA Batteries||2 Years|
|8 Modes||4||25||3xAAA Batteries||2 Years|
|8 Modes||4||25||3xAAA Batteries||1 Year|
1. Zewa® SpaBuddy® Sport TENS Pain Therapy
For you sports enthusiasts, the Zewa® SpaBuddy® is great sports medicine. After you have beat yourself to a pulp on the machines, you need a little help and this unit helps in a big way. You can put it anywhere on your body, but not your head. Put the electrodes on top of the area causing the most pain. You can use with 2 or all-4 electrodes that is recommended.
The SpaBuddy® Sport will provide you with temporary pain relief when you’ve overworked your muscles, you are sore and ache due to strain from exercise or normal household and work activities. Using the Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS), that is electromassage therapy, you will feel like you have been to a massage therapist.
The SpaBuddy® Sport provides you with 8 computer-controlled programs to fit your needs. Try them all to see what feels best for you. You soon will feel relieved when your achy muscles relax.
- Start program number 1 for a few minutes and gradually progress up to program 8. Stay with the program that feels the best giving you the best benefits.
- Start with a low intensity setting increasing it slowly. You will feel a tapping sensation, maybe a tingling and massage-type feelings, vibrations or quivering and they feel quite nice. Lower the intensity if you don’t feel comfortable or you get a stinging sensation.
- There are no side effects. This unit has dual channels with 30 intensity levels and is not harmful, so use it as you need it.
The display is easy to read using LCD (Liquid Crystal Display). It is not LED (Light Emitting Diodes). Either one is easy to read light. The display will show you the programs and bars for intensity.
You can set the time up to 5 each 95 minutes or continuous. A button lock feature will protect the device from accidental changes when you put it into a pocket or purse. The countdown timer will show you time remaining for each therapy session. The unit is approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for home use and no drugs are involved using it. No prescription is necessary, since it’s sold over the counter. Healthcare and therapists use the same technology built into this unit and you can do it in the comfort of your home.
The device has a plastic protection covering on the front. Just remove the plastic and there will be no scratches seen. Pull the plastic downward not straight up or you might remove all of the screen cover. If that happens, simply place it back on and it will not come off again since the plastic is tight.
In the box, you will find the Zewa® SpaBuddy® Sport TENS unit, 4 electrodes with self-adhesive pads, 2 electrode cables, 3 AAA batteries and the unit adjusts from 0-100 mA. A User’s Manual and a 2-year warranty are provided. The unit measures 3.8 x 2.5 x 1-inches and weighs 4.8 ounces.
2. PurePulse™ Pro Advanced TENS Unit Muscle Stimulator
Using the Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation, the wonderful electromassage therapy will have you feeling as if you have been to a massage therapist. Give yourself a treat with this unit for your sore and tired muscles. Rather than spend your money at the massage or physical therapist, the chiropractor, or a physician, spend the time at home and save money.
PurePulse™ is durable and powerful and fits into a pocket or purse with no problems and promises to give you a drug-free solution to pain in your neck, shoulders, low back, waist, arms, legs, and feet. Do not use on your head.
The 25 therapeutic intensity levels will treat all people and all muscle groups in your body. The gentle pulses are great for areas that are more sensitive and the intensity can be increased for larger muscles.
- Select from 8 preset programmable therapy functions and adjust the timer from 5-60 minutes for your specific needs.
- The LED display is easy to use and to view for your selections.
- PurePulse™ Pro provides their bonus, FREE Pain Management Video Series that shows you how to use the unit with detailed exercises. Advice is provided for treating your sore painful neck, back, shoulders, arms, hamstrings, calves, buttocks, knees and more.
In the box is the FDA Approved PurePulse™ Pro digital TENS unit, 4 electrode pads, 2 connector leads, 3 AA batteries, and a convenient storage bag. PurePulse™ Pro is backed by Pure Enrichment’s industry-leading 2-year warranty so your satisfaction is 100% guaranteed.
3. iReliev™ Top-Best TENS Massager Unit
A remarkable way for pain relief is by using the Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS). It is an astonishing electromassage therapy unit and you will feel as if you have been to a massage therapist.
Transform the way you deal with your acute or chronic pain. The best and top selling iReliev™ can be used in the privacy and comfort of your home or when you are somewhere else. The relaxing massaging electro pulses will give you a measure of relief from your pain fast and effectively.
The low microamp electrical pulses are a drug-free way to relieve your pain and sore aching muscles. TENS have been used by massage and physical therapists for over 30 years. They are safe to use and do indeed reduce pain and doctors approve these TENS for patient purchase and use.
The TENS units work to send electrical rhythms to the skin stimulating nerves to block the pain signal at the brain level. The brain chemical endorphins are a natural painkiller and the TENS are thought to increase the level of endorphins.
- iReliev™ has two channels where you can use 2 self-adhesive pads for smaller muscle areas and the 2 other pads for larger muscle and multiple areas simultaneously.
- A back wrap accessory is available and sold separately to have your unit be more flexible for your pain needs.
- The screen uses a liquid crystal display (LCD) that is easy to read with simple to operate large buttons and displays the 8 preprogramed therapy modes from 1-8 for your requirements and liking.
- The timer runs from 5-60 minutes and is adjustable for how you want it to run.
- A battery level indicator is in the display so you will know the life left in your batteries.
- You can control the intensity level, and the unit has an automatic lock out feature to keep your settings when you store the unit in a pocket or purse. With this feature, you can take your programmed unit with you.
- The non-rechargeable batteries can last up to 150 hours depending on settings and how the unit is used. There is no electric recharging unit since this runs on batteries.
The iReliev™ provides 25 intensity levels at 80 microamps. You do not need a doctor’s prescription because this is sold over the counter. It is FDA approved and uses no invasive methods.
In the box you will receive the iReliev™ dual channel TENS device, 4 electrode lead wires, 20 premium 1.5-inch square pads, 3 AAA batteries, a tote bag with draw strings, a belt clip and holster, a quick start guide, a User’s Manual with a 1-year warranty. The dimensions of the unit are 2.2″ x 7.8″ x 0.9″ and it weighs 8 ounces.
4. HealthmateForever® NK8GL TENS EMS Unit
This model, HealthmateForever® NK8GL, combines TENS and EMS in one fantastic unit. A TENS unit stimulates the nerve endings while the Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS) unit stimulates the muscles.
This dynamic small unit has adjustable settings that are user friendly. The Auto Mode and Pause is controlled from the center/central button. You will love the massage modes that include Tuina (push and pull), acupuncture, tapping, Guasha (scraping), cupping, and any combination. This unit has 6, 8, 10, 12, or 24 modes. The electro current technology will have your pain relieved immediately. The programmed pre-set massage modes are highly effective and are vigorous to your sore muscles. This unit is the supreme physical therapy TENS and EMS combined in one digital massager for many uses. The unit is FDA compliant. No prescription is required since this is an over-the-counter product. It is great for your shoulders, back, waist, neck, arms, legs, and feet when they are screaming for pain relief.
- The convenient built-in timer can be set from 10-60 minutes, with the default time set at 30 minutes. Select your preferences for your desired results. The unit will automatically shut off when the time is up.
- The unit is small enough to fit into a pocket or purse for around home or traveling.
- The 14-point acupuncture placement chart is loaded with information for using with your device.
- A lithium battery built into the unit powers the robust TENS and EMS bioelectrical stimulator for your muscles.
- The backlit LCD (liquid crystal display) is an animated display showing the massage modes, intensity levels, treatment time, battery life with indicator, battery-charging time, and has microcomputer intelligent control technology.
- This HealthmateForever® has dual channels for doing many chosen features simultaneously.
- The unit has 6 built-in massage modes, 20 levels of intensity that are adjustable by increasing or decreasing at a steady rate the 6 programmed massage modes.
- Battery can be recharged in a 120-Volt receptacle. The lithium battery can hold a charge up to 10 hours of continuous use.
- The unit can be attached to a computer USB port for recharging.
- Gels and lotions are not necessary since the self-adhesive pads have a gel on them.
- The last mode is Auto Mode and can rotate through all the modes.
- Output Pulse Width: 100μS ± 15%
- Pulse Frequency: <100 Hz
- Max Output Amplitude: <5v r=”” m=”” s=”” li=””>
- 3.5 mm Plug
- Screen Size: 1.25″ W x 1.5″ T
- Size: 1.5″ L x 3″ W x .5″ T
- Weight: 1.3 oz.
The box contains 1 HealthmateForever® NK8GL TENS Unit, 8 self-adhesive conductive reusable pads, a free 2-pair of large pads totaling 4, plus 2 sets of 4-in-1 pads, 3 sets electrode wires, 1 USB charger, 1 wall unit A/C charger, a User’s Manual, a detailed instruction manual, and an acupuncture replacement point manual, with a lifetime warranty card included.
5. Therapeutix TENS Unit Electronic Massager RXL Ultra
Picture yourself without pain in your muscles and joints. The stellar new model RXL Therapeutix-USA is of medical power for more penetration. You asked for more features, and we have provided them for your preferred preferences. The long-life LED backlights make it easy for you to see in the dark or dim lit places. The intensity controls are available for each electrode port. The screen is large and the unit as 24 modes for an improved and enriched experience. You will no longer need to visit the chiropractor, therapist, and maybe you can give up your pain medication. This will save you time and money!
The unit with no side effects uses the Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) that is electromassage therapy and you will feel as if you have been to a massage therapist. This powerhouse will do that for you. It is great for your back, bursitis pain, waist, neck, arms, legs, buttocks, hamstrings, calves, and feet when they are screaming for pain relief. Manage other areas for your well-being that might include strengthening, balance, osteoporosis pain, and to increase circulation to decrease cellulite. The Therapeutix RXL TENS electronic pulse massager is used for lower back pain, headaches, migraines, fibromyalgia, diabetes, high blood pressure, plantar fasciitis, shoulder, and knee pain. Do not use on your head.
- The lithium-ion rechargeable battery provides reliable hours of continuous pain relief.
- The Therapeutix RXL fits in your pocket or purse for using freely around the house or whenever you need instant pain relief wherever you are.
- For your safety and over-the-counter purchase, the unit has been FDA approved. No prescription is necessary from your doctor.
- The unit is a multi-function device with both TENS and EMS. A TENS unit stimulates the nerve endings and the Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS) stimulates the muscles. This unit does both to give you plenty of pain relief, so set the timer and enjoy.
- TENS units range in frequencies between 2~150 Hz and this unit has multiple settings ranging between 1~110 Hz. Your User’s Manual outlines the frequencies for each setting to fit your needs.
- The unit uses: kneading, Swedish, cupping, scrapping, reflexology, and Tai Chi.
- These units work great for sciatica! The two locations recommended for treating are the low back where the nerves originate and then the glute or the back of the leg where the pain radiates.
- The unit does not have a continuous mode because the frequencies are designed to create relaxing micro-contractions in the muscles. A continuous mode at moderate intensity would cause muscle fibers to contract without any relaxation and could result in a cramp. Therefore, with your safety in mind, Therapeutix excluded such a setting.
You can use 2 pads at the left and 2 at the right leads for the A and B ports. Each lead is 5-feet long and has 2 pads so you can use the small or medium pads mixed or matched with all 4 pads simultaneously. So enjoy pain relief at 2 different areas of your body at the same time. The UL listed unit has 2 x 2 leads, 2 small massage pads, 2 medium massage pads, and a cord saver device.
Note: Bioelectric stimulation is safe for most people providing welcomed benefits. Do not use if you are pregnant, wear a pacemaker, have metal implanted, and have epilepsy, heart conditions, a high fever, infection, an acute or chronic disease, skin problems, or a recent surgery. Consult with your healthcare provider for any conditions that might put you at risk using this device.
Do not open the chassis/body control shell for any reason. Be sure to keep the Massager and the massage pads out of reach of children, pets, and some elders.
The unit will plug into your USB port and a USA 110/120-Volt adapter is provided to plug into the wall. No regular batteries are used. Input: 3.7-Volts D/C.
Gift-wrapping is available. You will receive the fully charged unit and all accessories, an acupressure point guide, and a User’s Manual. Ignore the instructions in the User’s Manual stating to charge the unit for 10 hours before using—it’s already charged and ready to use. This unit is the only massager backed by a Lifetime no-hassle free replacement 100% satisfaction Guarantee!
Best of the Best Inexpensive TENS Units Under $50
|5 Modes||4||8||1x9V Battery||1 Year|
1. TENS 7000™ 2nd Edition
Being a highly valued and popular digital device the TENS 7000™ 2nd Edition is outstanding in the marketplace at 10 mA stronger output than before. The second edition has heightened improvements over former models. The upgraded digital processor is more accurate being more durable and user friendly. The unit has amplitude knobs where you can see the graph intensity of your level settings. Doctors recommend this unit for effective relief of pain. The TENS 7000 2nd Edition will win your approval and support.
The TENS 7000™ 2nd Edition units are used for many conditions to include:
- Instant relief of acute or chronic pain
- Maintaining and increasing joint range of motion
- Pain relief for neck, shoulders, back, and feet
- Muscle spasms relaxation
- Increases blood circulation
- Instant post-surgical stimulation
This unit has 2 different channels to use with either 2 or 4 electrodes.
For you tech savvy people, the pulse amplitude is adjustable, 0-100 mA peak into 500Ω (ohms) load per channel. The waveform is asymmetrical biphasic square pulse with a pulse rate of 2-150 Hz that is adjustable at 1 Hz per step. The pulse width is 50-300 ms and is adjustable, with 10 µs per step 100 μs (microseconds) (0.1 μs – cycle time for frequency 10 kHz). The timer is adjustable in 5-minute increments from 5-60 minutes, or continuous.
- 5 program modes are defined in your User’s Manual. They are Burst Mode (B), Normal Mode (N), and Modulation Mode (M) that is a combination of pulse rate and width with a cycle of 1 second. The Strength Duration Mode (SD1) has the intensity always increasing with pulse width decreasing and the other way around for a total cycle time of 10 seconds. The Strength-Duration Mode (SD2) intensity always increases while the pulse width decreases and the other way around for a total cycle time of 10 seconds.
- The TENS 7000™ is able to store up to 60 sets of your favorite operation records for a total 999 hours of recorded time. When the battery power is low, an indicator will show that to you on the LCD (liquid crystal display) screen with its Low Battery Indicator feature. The dimensions are 4-inches long x 2.4-inches wide x 1-inch high and weighs 5.3 ounces with the 1 each 9-Volt heavy-duty battery included.
The voltage is 0-50-Volts with a load of 500Ω. The unit comes with a Safety Amplitude Cap, and is FDA approved as a class II medical device.
Included in the box are the silver finish stimulator, a sturdy metal belt clip, rubber side rails for ease in handling, 2 pairs of 45-inch lead wires, a package of 4 self-adhesive reusable electrodes with pads and a hard plastic carrying case. A 1-year manufacturer warranty, instruction manual, and quick-start guide are included.
Prescription required: The TENS 7000™ can be ordered by a licensed healthcare provider or with a doctor’s prescription.
2. HealthmateForever® TENS Unit HM6ML
The HealthmateForever® is a digital controlled electrotherapy electrical stimulator for the body. It has 8 massage modes and customized intensities. The settings are easy to adjust to include Auto Mode and Pause on the central button. The default timer is for 20 minutes; however, the built-in timer operates from 10-60 minutes as you choose. When the time is up, the unit shuts off automatically. The unit is user friendly and of high quality.
This TENS is a portable pocket size to take with you to the office or when traveling. Just tuck it into your purse or luggage and it will be with you for any tired and sore muscles, or tension.
- This physical therapy digital massage unit is safe and effective when you follow the instruction booklet. The educational manual and acupuncture placement point’s chart are very informative as well.
- It is rechargeable with a built-in lithium battery. The animated LCD screen displays the massage mode, treatment time, and intensity. It also shows the battery charging time and has a battery level indicator.
- The HealthmateForever® has dual output adhesive pads and can be used at the same time. With the self-adhesive gel pads, it is not necessary to use any other creams with it.
- The two power sources are the built-in rechargeable lithium battery that connects to a wall unit and a USB port for your computer. The lithium battery is replaceable and can hold its charge for up to 10 hours with continued use. The Strength increases and decreases function continuously and have 20 levels for choosing as you like.
- You may need to charge the unit for up to 10 hours before you use it the first time.
- Be sure your skin is free from oil, lotions, dirt, or perspiration. Use an alcohol swab before attaching and afterwards. Put a drop of water on the pads for sticking power.
- When attaching to your body, connect the wire to the port on the bottom of the unit. Simply snap the adhesive pads to the electrode wire for connecting. Then remove the protective plastic film and put the pads on your muscle pain for relief.
- There is a switch on the top for turning the unit on and off. When you start the unit, it will start in Mode 1 automatically. Press the ‘M’ button to change modes.
- After selecting the mode you want, press the plus (+) button to increase intensity and press the minus (-) button to decrease the intensity.
- Lie down or sit in a comfortable position and enjoy the deep massaging pulsations for relieving your muscle pain. No more phantom pain from carpal tunnel syndrome.
- It works by sending the electrical pulses through the central nervous system blocking pain receptors similar to pain medication.
- The unit is FDA registered and you will not need a prescription to purchase it. The unit is an over-the-counter product for purchase.
The electrotherapy device works to send electrical pulses to your muscles using the electrode self-adhesive pads. With the impulses, your muscles relax and contract producing soothing massage sensations similar to that given by a massage therapist. It penetrates muscle groups much deeper than human hands can. By placing the pads at the pain points, you will feel immediate pain relief and relaxation.
Another mode on the unit uses simulated ancient Chinese therapeutic methods (Tuina, acupuncture, Guasha, Cupping, slimming, body building, and random) and modern technologies combined (Human Body Simulation technology, bionic technology, bioelectricity technology, and microcomputer intelligent control technology).
- Output Pulse Width: 100μS ± 15%
- Pulse Frequency: <100 Hz
- Max Output Amplitude: <5v r=”” s=”” m=”” – 5v – =””>
- Input Voltage: DC 5V
- Rated Current: ≤ 50mA
- Rated Power: ≤ .25W
- 5 mm Plug
- Screen Size: 1″ W x 1.25″ T
- Size: 1.5″ L x 3.25″ W x .25″ T
- Weight: 1.1 oz.
Your box will include the HealthmateForever® TENS Unit, a 4-piece self-adhesive reusable gel pads, 2 sets of electrode wires (2.5 mm plug), 1 USB charger, 1 A/C wall charger, and an international travel charger being 110/240-Volts. One operating manual and 1 detailed instruction manual, an acupuncture replacement point manual, and a lifetime warranty card are included. A free bonus Education Reference Booklet is included as well.
Step-by-Step Guide for Choosing the Best TENS Units
Step 1: Assessment of Pain Areas and How Pain is Caused
Pain is a tormenting, depilating, and distressing nerve-racking condition that prevents you from being who you are with any quality of life if it is continuous and excruciating. Even mild pain is hard to live with. Pain is so unpleasant and is caused by the noxious stimulation of the nerve endings. It is a subjective feeling and an individual response to the cause. Because it is subjective, personal, individualistic, it is difficult to define. Pain is the basic symptom of inflammation and provides valuable information for diagnosing conditions and disorders. It might be mild or severe, chronic or acute, lancinating, burning, dull or sharp, precisely or poorly localized, or referred. To experience pain is to take in many factors such as physical, mental, biochemical, psychologic, physiologic, social, cultural or emotional.
People in pain withdraw from the situations that might damage them temporarily, while others have been so chronic, it never leaves them. Pain is debilitating and takes the joy out of life. You want to protect your painful area and sometimes you want no one around you.
Pain can be removed immediately once the painful or injured stimulus is removed. The body can heal and the pain will be gone. Sometimes pain occurs when there is not damage, disease or anything obvious.
People see physicians in most countries for the most common complaint: pain. It is the major symptom for many medical conditions and interferes significantly in a person’s life.
Step 2: Knowing the Part of the Body that Needs Treatment
Transitory pain comes and goes almost immediately. Chronic and acute pain is discussed below.
Pain that lasts longer than six months affecting about 100 million Americans can be mild or excruciating. It can be merely an inconvenience or totally incapacitating. It can be continuous or intermittent.
When you suffer from chronic pain, the signals stay active in the nervous system for months and sometimes years and have a toll on one’s emotional and physical well-being.
The most common complaints of pain are from headaches, joint pain, backaches, and pain from injuries. Chronic pain includes sinus pain, tendinitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and specific body pains of the neck, shoulders, and pelvis. Conditions of pain can occur from general and specific areas of nerve and muscle pain and develop into a chronic state.
There can be an ongoing source for pain, or it could have been triggered by trauma, and injury, or an infection. Some people can experience chronic pain without ever having any body damage or previous injuries.
The more you think about pain emotionally the worse it gets. The stress, anxiety, anger, and depression, to include fatigue, act together with the pain and decrease the body’s natural painkilling chemical known as endorphins in the brain. Relentless pain can overwhelm the immune system creating other problems.
Chronic pain symptoms never go away and they can be mild to severe. The pain is expressed as aching, burning, shooting and electrical. The feelings are those of soreness, stiffness, and tightness.
Unexpected and abrupt or slow in onset, acute pain is usually treated by the condition that caused the pain. It can be mild to severe and has a duration of less than 6 months.
Step 3: Factors that Play an Important Role in Pain
Pain differs in quality and intensity from mild, moderate or severe. To designate quality, it might be a dull ache, a sharp, piercing, burning, tingling, pulsating or throbbing feeling. You might get hot steam on your hand when cooking, and when the pain is severe, the nerve cells transmit the pain signal rapidly, if the paid is mild, the signals are sent slower via different nerve fibers.
A person’s emotional and reasoning abilities tell them that pain to the head or vital organs is worse than a finger or toe, cut, scape, bruise, or scratch.
Women seem to recover from pain more rapidly than men do. Women cope with pain better than men do as has been shown in studies and do not allow it to control them. The kappa-opioids work better in women than men. The k-opioid receptor (KOR) is a protein in humans. The KOR is one of four related receptors that bind opiate-like compounds in the brain and are responsible for facilitating the effects of these compounds that alter the perception of pain, consciousness, motor control, mood and are within our brain chemistry.
Female sex hormones are thought by researchers to increase the analgesic medications. Male sex hormones might make the analgesics less effective. When women are pregnant they are less sensitive to pain because their estrogen and progesterone levels are higher at this time. Women with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) often experience greater pain during their periods.
Family upbringing is another factor for perceiving pain. Some children were comforted by parents when in pain, while other parents ignored their children in pain. Some children were punished for crying, while some of the girls could get away with it. The boys were chastised and told that “boys don’t cry.”
A person’s cultural or ethnic roots can be a factor for their perception of pain. People in the West seek medical treatment immediately. Western medicine has been slow to catch up with Eastern and Native American philosophies of emotions and spirituality in healing pain.
Step 4: Comparing TENS/EMS Models
The two electrical units, the TENS unit and the EMS unit, can be used to treat chronic pain. The units function in similar ways but their names indicate their applications. A TENS unit stimulates the nerve endings while the EMS unit stimulates the muscles.
People are searching for alternative ways for dealing with their pain. The last few years has seen an interest in the marketplace for home use with the TENS and EMS therapy.
The new versions are portable, are pocket size, and run on batteries that are rechargeable. The units send microamps of voltage to nerve endings to the brain for reducing or stopping pain. Our descriptions here show you the many features and options to help you select the right unit just for your personal needs.
The things to consider are:
- Number of Pads
- Single or Dual Channels
- Number of Modes
TENS and EMS units were once only available through medical prescriptions, but now you can buy them unit online.
The home TENS and EMS therapy is a safe and effective method for treating pain without using pain killing drugs. They are now less expensive to purchase so anyone can affordably purchase them for pain relief for a variety of muscle and nerve pain issues. It sure beats paying a chiropractor or therapist for the same type of treatment.
By using a combination of both TENS and EMS you will see maximum results. You can purchase dual units now available for the combination of pain reduction and muscle stimulation at the cellular level. This will provide you with increased muscle tone and decreased levels of chronic pain. These devices should be supervised by a professional so that you will know the proper placement of the pads and correct signal strength. You should vary the placement of the electrode pads with each treatment.
Note: Pregnant women, anyone implanted with a pacemaker, or anyone with seizures should not use either EMS or TENS without first consulting with their healthcare provider.
Step 5: Read Customer Feedback, Questions, and Answers
Read reviews and customer feedback to help you select the right TENS or EMS for your purchasing considerations. You will get a good idea of others’ satisfactions to include questions you might be considering to ask. The answers are from users just like you and sometimes the seller will answer questions that are definitely right on. You can read the pros and cons and decide for yourself as to what factor is relevant and what appears to be unimportant.
You will be delighted using your home TENS or EMS unit to relieve sore muscles, joint pain, and nerve pain. Both units are sold at Amazon using low voltage (microamps) electrical impulses to stimulate painful body areas. A TENS unit excites the nerve endings while the EMS unit awakens your muscles. There are no side effects as attested to by many medical professionals. No drugs are involved and when you use the device you might be able to stop taking painkilling drugs that leave you feeling out of control anyway.
We have enjoyed our successful reputation from satisfied customers. Our customers are highly respected and our professional team remains conscientious in its mission for focusing on every customer’s request and preferences. Feel welcome to contact us with your questions or ideas. We sincerely value your feedback.
This blog is managed by Dr. Farber. She has had many years in the field of pain management. You might want to know more about her!