TENS machines can a have a significant effect in reducing pain or feelings of panic in labour. TENS is an acronym that stands for Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator. This small machine is used as a pain coping device. It consists of a small box attached to four sticky pads that are placed on your lower back.
A small electrical current (the intensity of which is controlled by the birthing mother) is emitted into the lower back. This signal interferes with pain transmitters and consistently signals your brain to release endorphins, your natural pain killer hormone.
I found this great video on youtube that explains and demonstrates the way TENS machines work for labour. Take a look!
In order for a TENS machine to have the best effect, it must be used beginning in early labour.
You may rent a TENS machine from a physiotherapist or your doula may have one.
Many women who have used TENS machines have reported feeling more confident in themselves and seem to hold focus well. For those of you who have used TENS machines before, please share your experience in the comments section!