By Abby Maher
The alpha-stim device has been billed as a drug-free treatment option for pain anxiety, depression and insomnia. It functions by passing a low-voltage electrical charge through the body between two electrodes. For treatments involving anxiety, depression, or insomnia, the electrodes are placed on each ear via clips. The device is worn for 20 minutes and treatments can be done daily or as needed.
According to research, alpha-stim has been found to assist sleep and elevate mood by stimulating associated brain regions and hormone producing portions of the brain. Devices like this have been in use in the United States for 50 years and have been considered safe.
How does it feel?
Placing the electrodes on my ears, I felt a little reservation. The device comes with instructions that says to gradually increase the intensity of the charge until you feel seasick, then turn it down. I didn’t really believe that the two little clips could make me feel seasick until I felt it for myself.
Once I had it at the correct level for me, it felt like a gentile tap on my earlobes. It was easy to ignore and not painful at all.
Does it work?
When I had the clips in place, I felt a little tired and was fairly relaxed. Once I removed them, the feeling continued for a little while. I am not currently suffering from any of the conditions that alpha-stim is designed to treat. However, I can imagine that the calming effect of the alpha-stim would be effective for use in treating those issues. I think alpha-stim could be a useful part of a treatment regimen and is worth giving a try.