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What are your experiences of TENs machines?

(43 Posts)
Princesspowersparkle Sun 22-Apr-07 19:15:34

Hi All, am currently 27 weeks and am thinking about pain relief. I'n not a big fan of epidurals/ pethadine (although don't get me wrong, if I need it, I'll have it). I want to use a pool, but if this is not available I'd like a back up! So, my question is, have any of you used TENs machines, and if so, how did you find it?
Thank you!
PPS 27+2 xx

softmusk Sun 22-Apr-07 19:19:28

with my dd1 i didnt use a tens machine i had pethadine and gas and air with second i had a tens machine and loved it only had gas and air at right at the end before i started to push

i love the tens machine dont no if it helped the pain or gave me some thing to do when in pain so ddint think about it quite as much

but it worked so i happy

tassis Sun 22-Apr-07 19:24:29

I loved it both times.

More of a distraction I think than actual pain relief, but I'd say go for it!

I hired mine in Tesco.

cazzybabs Sun 22-Apr-07 19:28:27

With dd1 I only used the is very weird and you have to stick with it to get benifet. It was like pins and needles and it made my muscles contract.

With dd2 I used TENS till I got in the pool.

I would use them again.

RedFraggle Sun 22-Apr-07 19:36:21

I used a TENS machine for a quite a while and found it very helpful. Only problem I had was they kept me on a bed for monitoring and kept making me shimmy up and down to check progress. During one of the many "shimmies" a pad came unstuck and I didn't notice for ages and thought "Why isn't this helping anymore!!!" So if you are made to move about like that it is probably worth getting your birth partner to check on the pads at intervals!

abidabidoo Sun 22-Apr-07 19:40:55

Learn how to use it before you need it! I never quite got round to it so had a quick instruction from panicky dp (fairly panicky myself) during contractions that were strong from the off.

We then turned the light out so dp could get some sleep and I managed to press the wrong buttons for the booster bit and got myself in a right tizz because it wasn't helping.

Much better once I'd woken him up and I could see what I was doing!

Blandmum Sun 22-Apr-07 19:42:36

Good, right up to the point that it didn't cut it any more, at which point I needed gas and air.

And then diamorphine

And then an epidural

tribpot Sun 22-Apr-07 19:45:49

Mine was good - I've used it for period pain since. So am v annoyed I can't find it at the mo, have a feeling I might have lent it to someone ...

TheBlonde Sun 22-Apr-07 19:52:53

I used it twice
Would recommend

TheBlonde Sun 22-Apr-07 19:53:20

only took it off to push

JodieG1 Sun 22-Apr-07 19:55:32

Used one for first birth but didn't notice any difference between pain levels for that and second birth (gas and air only for all 3 and barely any of that). I never used it again though as for a year afterwards I had tingling feelings running up and down my spine, only reason was the tens.

Washersaurus Sun 22-Apr-07 19:55:32

I loved mine, it got me right through to the end; when I had lots of gas and air aswell. I would highly recommend them.

Mind you, my sister borrowed it when she gave birth a few weeks later and she didn't like it at all. (She is a show-off though she gave birth without any pain relief)

B1977 Sun 22-Apr-07 20:00:33

Really brilliant, got me through to the second stage when I went into birthing pool and had gas and air instead (which I also loved ).

chilledmama Sun 22-Apr-07 20:00:54

Like you didn't want epidural but if needed would go for it. I used my TENs machine from about 2am (est labour started midnight). I'm honestly not sure if it worked but I wasn't willing ot switch it off to find out. I took it off as I got into the bath at around 5am. The water itself was ssooooo much better than the TENs.
If you want to assure a water birth then your best bet is a Midwife Run unit or Homebirth! Homebirth definatly gets my vote!!!!!

pistachio Sun 22-Apr-07 20:11:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ash6605 Sun 22-Apr-07 20:19:09

i absolutely hated it,it felt like i had spiders crawling up my back it was awful.

BarefootDancer Sun 22-Apr-07 20:19:46

I second practising with it before you go into labour. It is quite easy to use and for me didn't annoy at all. Only took it off to jump in the water bath.
Put it on dh to practise though and he nearly jumped out of his skin (on low power) ...wimp!

PanicPants Sun 22-Apr-07 20:21:05

I hired one, but when my laboured started I was in so much pain I completely forgot about it

In my defense, all my pain was in my back and I didn't think I was in labour. I had a fairly quick (but extremely painful) back labour)6 hours from start to finish. So I didn't have those hours of early labour to use the tens machine on.

So don't know if I'd bother next time - just in case my labour was the same as the first.

BarefootDancer Sun 22-Apr-07 20:21:15

Oh, and I recommend taking a full dose of paracetamol when labour first starts to get annoying.

TinyGang Sun 22-Apr-07 20:23:51

I had one and also for a couple of weeks before labour cos I had v bad sciatica (baby sat on nerve).

It's was a distraction more than anything I think.

I'm not sure it cuts out pain at all - although some people swear that it does. I wouldn't have it again and identify with the 'spiders crawling on your back' feeling. I didn't like it much and didn't have it the second time around.

chilledmama Sun 22-Apr-07 20:26:27

You should hire one and try it out...what have you got to loose??

MaeWest Sun 22-Apr-07 20:28:21

Used one when DS was born last year, didn't have any other pain relief apart from getting in the bath for a bit (remembering to take TENS machine off first ). I found pressing the boost button during contractions quite comforting, but whether it actually did any painkilling is debatable or whether it is more of a pyschological thing I'm not sure. My labour was all back pain, so felt like the TENS was really getting to the right place IYSWIM. I hired one, my mw gave me the leaflet, would definitely use one again.

sphil Sun 22-Apr-07 21:24:36

I used TENS for both mine. First was induced labour (at 36 wks) - very painful but quick (5 hrs). Hard to know if TENS helped but I didn't use anything else (despite asking for very form of pain relief going ). Second was 2 hours and so much less painful it was like a different experience - I'm pretty sure the TENS helped this time. Mind you, don't do what I did - during the pushing stage I yelled ' turn it up to maximum' - DH did and I nearly shot off the bed. Heartless midwife and DH fell about laughing...

Princesspowersparkle Sun 22-Apr-07 21:26:23

Thank you all- I think its well worth a go for me. Another question- what does it actually feel like?

Bethbe Sun 22-Apr-07 21:28:33

Didn't do anything for the pain, - but giving yourself an electric shock when you have a contraction is mildy distracting!

Would use again!

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