Attack of the Villainous Period Pains

period pains 2

As a woman, you get to experience what is cherish-ably noticed as a miracle… giving birth. But before getting there, we all have to go through “that time of the month” situation which in many cases is a terror to deal with (especially if you’re on the receiving end). It’s not just PMS that’s an issue, but the dreaded period pains that is evitable every single month.

Period pains are caused by the muscular wall of the womb contracting. During your period, these contractions work up a sweat and contract much more vigorously to encourage the part of the womb to shed away, resulting in your menstrual cycle. When these contractions are happening, it compresses the blood vessels that line your womb, temporarily cutting off the blood/oxygen supply. Because of this “choking” effect, the tissues in your womb release chemicals that trigger pain. It doesn’t even end there.

Because of this pain, another chemical is then released (the body is such a wonderful instrument) called Prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are a sneaking encouragement for the womb muscles making them contract further increasing the level of pain. So that is what’s going on down there!

Fear not! It is the 21st century and there are many drug free related options to reduce the trauma. Warm baths, mini massages around the lower abdomen area, hot water bottles are the cosy, relaxed approach to ease and calm the arcade action fighting game that’s happening in the womb. Soft exercise, yoga and pilates are also other options as being active really does help to distract you and ease the pain.


TENS machines such as the Smart TENS and the Flexi TENS also offer a lot of support. These machines send out tiny electrical pulses through sticky electrode pads which when placed on your skin will stimulate the nerves in the pelvic area, essentially blocking the pain signals. How cool and discrete is that?

Some women do experience this intense pain much more than others, but now you know how it can be helped. We love to make life just an ounce easier.

Click here for more useful information on TENS machines to help you out, peruse to your pleasure.


The Best Baby & Toddler Gear 2014 – Voting is now LIVE!


Yes that’s right! You can now VOTE for the Elle TENS Plus as your favourite product in the Consumer Choice Awards. The Elle TENS Plus is the first 3 in 1, maternity TENS with a built in contraction timer, hi spec standard TENS and pelvic floor stimulator.


In addition, The BBTG awards will be running a prize draw where every vote registered will be entered into and one lucky voter will win an Amazon Fire HD 7 tablet!

Voting closes 31st October so you’ve got until then to get those votes in! Click here to cast your vote!


We’ve got our fingers crossed!



Using TENS with Tennis Elbow

This is another common condition where TENS machines can be used to help with pain control and to return the range of elbow movement back to normality. The aim of TENS machines is to reduce the intensity of pain at rest or on movement, reduce the inflammation and promote a gradual return to normal function.

The first step is to place one of the electrodes over the outer aspect of the elbow over the most painful area, if known, and the second one opposite on the inner aspect of the elbow.  This can be seen in the diagrams on page 14 in our Easy Guide to TENS Pain Relief.

The next step is to select the timing, pulse rate, mode and intensity and then use your TENS machine as often as needed – this may be continuously during the first few days and at an intensity which may be fairly strong and firm or quite strong later which overrides the pain as you begin to move the elbow joint actively or passively with your other arm – it is a matter of personal preference and trial to see which suits you best!

After a few days, it should be possible to reduce the treatment time to shorter sessions of around 30-60 minutes and then 30 minutes once or twice each a day as your symptoms improve.

It may also be very helpful to use other treatments at this time in association with TENS machine e.g. analgesics, anti-inflammatories and local anti-inflammatory gel, mousse or spray e.g. ibuprofen or similar and cold or hot packs. Consult your medical practitioner or pharmacist if necessary, Gentle exercise can also be helpful, beginning with passive and then active exercise, including stretching exercises with a full range of elbow movement as your condition improves and returns to normal.

Recent Research:

1.Chesterton LS, van der Windt DA, Sim J, Lewis M, Mallen CD, Mason EE, Warlow C, Vohora K, Hay EM. Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation for the management of tennis elbow: a pragmatic randomized controlled trial: the TATE trial (ISRCTN 87141084). BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2009 Dec 11;10:156. This study is currently underway and ends in 2011.

2. Su X, Wu ZQ Cao XM, Effects of electro-acupuncture of different frequencies for treatment of patients with refractory tennis elbow syndrome. Zhongguo Zhen Jiu 2010 Jan;30(1):43-5. The electro-acupuncture of a pulsed waveform is better than the electro-acupuncture of continuous waveform  and is a better treatment for refractory tennis elbow syndrome.