Electric stimulation therapy is a therapeutic treatment that applies electrical stimulation in treating muscle spasms and pain. It can help prevent atrophy and build strength in patients with injuries.
Electrical stimulation can be used for pain relief. There are two theories as to why it relieves pain. The Gate Control Theory says that pain signals are sent to the brain via nerves but must pass through a "gate." The stimulation sensation from e-stim is said to pass through the gate, thus blocking the nerves that deliver pain sensations. Another theory is that the stimulation causes the brain to release the body's natural painkillers -- endorphins and enkephalins -- resulting in pain relief. Studies have shown marked increases in these chemicals after the use of low-frequency electrical stimulation.