Self-Adhesive TENS Electrodes

Self-Adhesive electrodes are intended for use with TENS (transcutaneious electrical nerve stimulation) and EMS (electrical muscle stimulation) devices.

The basics:

  • Use only on clean, dry skin.
  • Do not use on broken skin.
  • Single patient use only.  Do not share electrodes between users.
  • Use only according to the directions with your TENS or EMS device and or on the advice of your physician.
  • Remove electrodes by pulling up on an edge.  Do not pull buy the lead wires! 
  • Do not use damaged electrodes.
  • Do not apply electrodes across the head, across the heart or on the front of the neck (throat).
  • Do not use electrodes for stimulation if you have a cardiac pacemaker, implanted defibrillator or other implanted metallic or electronic device.  Such use could cause electric shock, burns, electrical interference or death.

My electrodes aren't sticky anymore!

The top reasons that electrodes stop being sticky are:

  • Getting lotions or oils on them
  • Over-hydrating usually through sweat. (the pads are too full of moisture)

Like a piece of tape, self-adhesive electrodes will quickly lose their ability to "stick" if they become covered with sweat, oils, lotions, sunscreen, dirt, etc. from your skin.  People with naturally oily skin or those who are sweating while wearing the electrodes will get fewer uses because of this.

Always thoroughly clean and dry your skin before using the self-adhesive electrodes in order to get them most life out of them.

Over-hydration comes from the pads absorbing a lot of sweat or water.  This will often leave them looking very matte (not shiny) with little or no stick to them.  This can often be fixed though, see the tip below.

If the gel layer on your electrode pads look like they are in good shape but they are matte (not shiny) and do not feel sticky, try this tip:  

  • Apply some rubbing alcohol to both pads on the gel side.
  • Rub the pads together. Initially they will feel slippery. Then they'll start to stick together.
  • Once they are sticking together, lay them gel side up and allow them to air dry for a few minutes.
  • Now they should be ready for more use!

Note: If this process does not bring back the stickiness (tac) of your electrode pads, you'll need to replace them.

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