The science behind cranial electrotherapy stimulation/CES Therapy
The Beginning of cranial electrotherapy stimulation
CES was originally developed in the Soviet Union in 1949, it's primary focus being the treatment of sleep disorders, hence it's initial designation as "electrosleep." Treatment of insomnia, however, has been overshadowed by psychiatric application for depression and anxiety.
How it works
As with a number of medicines, the mechanism of action (how it works) of CES is not fully understood. Research has led to the hypothesis that it has a mild effect on the hypothalmic area of the brain. Researchers also have noticed rapid increases in serotonin, also associated with relaxation and calmness, and decreases in cortisol, one of the primary stress-related biochemicals. Interestingly, CES also increases levels of norepinephrine and dopamine, both associated with alertness and feelings of pleasure. This may be why so many CES users report feeling both relaxed and alert.
Dangers when using CES therapy?
No negative effects or major contraindications have been found from the use of CES to date, either in the US or other parts of the world.
When to use & how long?
The answer to this can vary and also depends on your lifestyle and schedule. In most cases, the best time to use CES therapy would be about 5 or 6 pm, a few hours before bedtime. The length of a session should be about 30 minutes or so. It's suggested by most professionals that this is done daily for several weeks and then you may cut back to a few times a week if desired. This can vary depending on the individual. Some respond better to longer treatments, up to an hour and maybe earlier in the day or later at night. We suggest trying different times & treatment times to find what works best for you.
Who can benefit from CES therapy?
First and foremost, those suffering from stress in the form of mood, anxiety, and insomnia who seek an effective non- pharmacologic alternative. Secondly, those suffering from illnesses where stress constitutes a prime symptom.
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, stress-related problems account for 80-85% of all visits to medical offices. Research indicates that 80-85% of all diseases are caused by stress which plays a major role in aggravating up to 90% of all illnesses and some part in the development of every disease, from cancer to the common cold.
It has been estimated that 80% of the populace of the United States react to life adjustment problems with the "flight" or "fight" anxiety reaction. And that a similar percentage of our hospitals are filled with persons who have channeled anxiety released energies into their bodies resulting in psychogenic illnesses.
Among those illnesses are: substance abuse withdrawal syndrome (alcohol, street drugs, nicotine, prescription drugs), chronic fatigue syndrome including fybromyalgia, pre-menstrual syndrome, attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity, migraine and tension headaches, TMJ dysfunction, chronic pain, pre-competitive and performance anxiety, panic disorders, tic dolereaux, bruxism, stress induced asthma, hives, gastrointestinal disorders, ulcers or gastritis, and irritable bowel syndrome, to name a few.