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Tens machines

(22 Posts)
KT101 Tue 08-Sep-09 18:54:09

Does anyone know / have any experience of whether these work or whether one make is better than the other. Am expecting my first baby in 8 weeks and am considering hiring or buying one but have been told they are fairly useless????

choufleur Tue 08-Sep-09 18:59:19

I hired one but didn't use it. Found it really irritating and didn't take my mind off teh pain at all (i did go from having virtually no contraction to full blown contraction and 7cm dilated in about an hour though).

I think you'll get mixed reactions on here - some love them others don't.

DeathbyDora Tue 08-Sep-09 19:00:44

Loved mine, it doesn't make the pain go away but it definitely distracts your brain and gives you something to fiddle with in the absence of your DP's testicles and a pair of nutcrackers! grin

muddleddaizy Tue 08-Sep-09 19:15:11

I found it good for the early stages in both my labours. It doesn't take the pain away, but it helps. I hired mine from here

StayFrosty Tue 08-Sep-09 19:17:48

Like DeathbyDora says, it was a distraction really, something to fiddle with. You do notice it helping a bit in the early stages, but once things got well underway, it irritated me hugely and I ripped it off and demanded some drugs instead.

lost4words Tue 08-Sep-09 19:20:21

I found it useful and distracting in the early stages, too. But by the time I needed drugs for pain relief it was the 2nd most irritating thing in the universe.... the 1st most irritating being (ex)P who had taken to declaring "we'll get through this".

we? hmm

weegiemum Tue 08-Sep-09 19:23:37

I also found it intensely irtitating!

But I found pretty much everything that touched me irritating -- water (bath and birthing pool!! ewwww), clothes (got rid of pretty much all of them asap), dh (back massage fuck off go away!!!!) TENS was just another one of those things which irritated my skin.

I needed a LOT of space in labour, every time.

Yorky Tue 08-Sep-09 19:37:07

It was all the pain relief I had in my 2 labours, no time for gas and air after midwife arrived when I hopped in the pool sharpish! I heard they re better for longer labours as your body has time to build up the endorphins the TENS machine stimulates, or something.

I don't know if it helped, DH keeps reminding me I never got it too the highest level, it was a wierd sensation and useful distraction if nothing else.

You don't know what will suit you til it happens, frustrating isn't it!

l39 Tue 08-Sep-09 19:41:56

I have ordered one although not used them in any earlier labour. I remember when they cut into my hand for a drip during a contraction and how that really helped, so hoped a tens machine would distract in the same way - without ending up peppered with holes.

Grandhighpoohba Tue 08-Sep-09 20:04:01

Mine was a really long labour, (50 hrs) and I used it for the first 20 or so, and found it great. Really distracted me from the pain. I think the key thing is to put it on as soon as you feel the first contractions, even if you don't feel like you need it yet. Then build it up slowly as the pain gets worse.

I reached the stage where it wasn't enough, but would definately get one again.

beckynbump Tue 08-Sep-09 22:26:44

I found it really worked and used it in conjunction with gas and air. Have just booked mine for the next one, EDD 7 weeks

cory Wed 09-Sep-09 07:42:24

I found mine really good in that it made me cope with early labour so I wasn't too exhausted when it came to the really painful bits. It didn't take the pain off the last stage, but I was in better shape to cope with the last stage.

Bettymum Wed 09-Sep-09 11:18:55

I liked mine, I hired one from Boots. I even managed to sleep with it on (I had a very long labour). I had it on for so long that eventually it short circuited or something and started giving me electrical shocks which were certainly distracting grin. Ditched it once I got to hospital and onto the serious drugs.

KT101 Wed 09-Sep-09 22:32:12

thanks this was really useful. I think we will hire one and maybe it will distract me in the early stages. I am not keen to have an epidural as I want to stay mobile and DP is very squeemish about needles and goes white everytime he sees one - have visions of me getting my epidural and him hitting the floor.... obviously I have absolutely no idea what to expect so have advised himself that I reserve the right and scream for as many drugs as I can get :-)

Chunkamatic Wed 09-Sep-09 23:05:02

I hired one, it was awful. Just the kind of pain that makes me feel very very sick. It did not distract me whatsoever from the labour pain. However i'm glad I had it so I can rule it out next time. They're pretty cheap to hire so would be well worth it if it does work for you, and no great loss if it doesn't. Good luck!

Whitetara Thu 10-Sep-09 10:12:56

I've just used one and I found it really helped, and although while using it I couldn't really tell if it was working as I could still feel the contractions quite strongly, the mw said when i was admitted that if I took it off I'd really notice. I found it very good as a distraction as well and it really helped me to feel in control in the earlier stages of labour and then in conjuction with g&a like one of the previous posters.

I also had an epidural - you'll know if you want one and you probably won't even register your dp's reactions to you getting on...that will be the last thing on your mind.

daisydancer Thu 10-Sep-09 10:31:19

I used a TENS machine alone for the birth of my first DS and found it helped lots. The birth was still just as painful as child birth is but the machine helped me cope for some reason.

Had planned C section with DS2 but would have used TENS again.

pasturesnew Thu 10-Sep-09 10:38:39

I used one (hired) for first stage of labour and loved it, was reluctant to take it off to get into the pool but that was fine too. Have hired one again ready for this time round.

Worth a try, you can always take it off again if no use.

CarmenSanDiego Thu 10-Sep-09 10:41:34

I was ready to commit violence on anyone who tried to take mine away during labour. I wore it until I got in the birth pool and was still reluctant to take it off.

I used a Boots one for dd1 and dd2, and got a posh Elle one for ds. Preferred the Elle one but they both did the job.

pasturesnew Thu 10-Sep-09 10:46:03

Yes mine was Elle tens as well and have hired that again.

charleymouse Mon 05-Oct-09 14:06:46

Hi I used one for my first labour a home birth and thought it was great, managed using that and paracetomal.

Mine was loaned to me via the local hospital, I have now moved areas and will have to hire or buy one as they are not provided.

I think I have talked myself into the Elle one is that what others think is best?

Good luck KT101.

sheeplikessleep Mon 05-Oct-09 14:18:12

I loved mine.

The one time I took it off (to get in birthing pool), I felt my contractions in my back and they were so intensely painful. In 10 minutes, I was back out of the pool, tens back on and the back breaking pain had gone, to leave just contractions.

But then my mum said the back pain was worst bit for her when she had me.

Hired ours from Boots.

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