What is electrotherapy?

Electrotherapy is a form of medical treatment, which uses small electrical impulses to repair tissue, stimulate muscles and increase sensations and muscle strength.

What does electrotherapy involve?

There are several different forms of electrotherapy; these include ultrasound, interferential therapy, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), laser therapy and muscle stimulation. Ultrasound uses sound waves to speed up the healing process, while interferential therapy and TENS reduce pain by manipulating the nerves which reduces the sensation of pain and produces a tingling feeling. Laser therapy is sometimes used to repair damaged tissue; using lasers means the treatment can be both accurate and intense.

Effects and benefits of electrotherapy

The benefits of electrotherapy are wide-ranging and include a more advanced healing process, a more effective circulatory system and increased muscle tone. The effects of electrotherapy include a reduction in pain, increased strength, increased range of movement, increased speed and strength of muscle contractions and an increased rate of absorption.

Which conditions or injuries will benefit from electrotherapy?

Generally injuries that have caused swelling will respond well to electrotherapy; these include sprained ankles and overuse injuries such as tennis and golfer’s elbow.

Where is electrotherapy available?

Many physiotherapists offer electrotherapy treatments; some treatments are covered on the NHS, while some may only be available privately.

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