Where To Put a Tens Unit For Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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Carpal tunnel Syndrome is a condition involving pressure on the median nerve of the wrist. This could be caused by many things. 

Carpal tunnel can lead to tingling or numbing in your fingers and up your arm. Electrical stimulation from a TENS unit can help ease pain

You need to know where to put a TENS unit for carpal tunnel in order to find effective relief. The short explanationis that usually two pads are used: the first in the middle of your palm and the second under the wrist. 

That said, there’s some variation and nuance, and there are multiple configurations that can help. I’ll explain below.

Can A TENS Unit Help With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome can be uncomfortable or downright painful. Many years of using computers to build websites, typing on a computer non-stop, and bad/lazy ergonomics has shown me that!

Before using a TENS unit, you might want to place an ice pack over the area for a few minutes. This will help reduce the swelling on the wrist, and is often the best solution to ease carpal tunnel pain and discomfort. 

If you’ve beyond that point, a TENS unit can be used to help deal with the pain and discomfort of carpal tunnel. 

How Does It Work?

A TENS unit is a machine that uses electrical pulses targeted in specific areas, designed to interrupt the pain signals from reaching the brain so that you can feel more comfortable. 

Treatment with the TENS unit is not painful at all (at least it shouldn’t be, as long as you’re not overusing it). The electrode pads can safely be placed on your wrist and hands. Sometimes, th sensatations will feel tingly or like a massage. 

The good thing about the TENS unit is that it can be used all over the body where you feel pain — the back, the knees, shoulders, neck.

For pain in the hands, the electrode pads are usually placed beneath the thumb or at the back of the hand. 

Where To Put a TENS Unit For Carpal Tunnel


If you have carpal tunnel that is causing you pain in your hands and sometimes your arms, the electrode pads are typically be placed on the hands. Usually, two electrode pads are used. 

The first electrode pad can be placed in the middle of your palm. The second one is usually placed right under the wrist. 

The first electrode pad can be placed in the middle of your palm. The second one is usually placed right under the wrist. 

Before you start with the treatment, make sure that you firmly press the pads so they stick well. Additionally, make sure that they are well connected to the TENS device. See this article on how to make TENS pads sticky again.

Additional Setups for Carpal Tunnel Relief

After the first TENS therapy session, you can try switching the electrode pads to the backside of your hands. The first pad is placed on the back of your hand towards the middle. Then, the second one is placed just below your wrist bone. 

Alternatively, the placement of the electrode pads can be adjusted depending on the individual’s needs. The above placement is what most people with carpal tunnel do. However, it can still be changed depending on your need. 

Some people might see better results when the pad is placed just below the wrist and the other is placed on the back just below the wrist bone. 

If you are feeling pain up to your arm, it is possible to adjust the pads up to your arm to wherever you feel the most relief when using the TENS unit.