This section of our site includes answers to frequently asked questions about our products, our technology and how to use them. Choose a
general topic area below to read some of our FAQs (frequently asked questions). We may already have the answer to yours!
For ease in finding the answers to your questions, choose a topic category below:
Topic A: Product Information and Use
- Question: How much does the Alpha-Stim cost?
the most up to date pricing and consultation on which
product best fits your needs, contact :
- Question: Am I supposed to put the felts on top of the one's already
attached to the new earclips or new probes?
Answer: No. You must remove old felt electrodes and clean the surface of the metal contacts before applying new felt electrodes.
- Question: What causes the metallic taste in my mouth or flashing lights
when using CES or treating on or near the head?
Close proximity to the nerves governing taste or the optic nerve in case of the flashing lights can stimulate these nerves causing the metallic taste or stroboscopic effect. This is not
cause for concern and is normal in many patients. The flashing lights will go away when the stimulation is discontinued. If the metallic taste persists, rinse your mouth with water and it will go away.
- Question: Would Alpha-Stim help me in my sports training?
Many professional sports teams, as well as many colleges and universities use the Alpha-Stim both to enhance and potentiate the benefits derived from their training program,
and to treat pain, sprains, strains, and muscle imbalances that arise during training, practice or performance. Professional athletes also use the CES (ear clip) function to help focus their mind for competition.
- Question: My best friend puts his Alpha-Stim on his dog, who is very
nervous. Is that okay?
Some veterinarians do use and prescribe Alpha-Stim for use on animals, especially horses, dogs and cats. Have your friend check with his dog's veterinarian.
Topic B: Clinical Application of Alpha-Stim Technology
- Question: Sometimes when I use the Alpha-Stim I feel a slight stinging
sensation that makes me uncomfortable.
Answer: Turn the current down just below the point that the sensation is bothersome and continue to treat yourself at that current level.
- Question: Some people tell me that if they turn their Alpha-Stim all the way
up when they are using the ear clips, they feel like they've just had a double martini. Is that good or bad?
Answer: We do not suggest you keep the current so high that it causes unpleasant feelings. Some people get nauseous and throw up after a double martini. If you are one of those, we
suggest you not turn it up quite that high when you use it.
- Question: I have had depression for 20 years. Will I have to use the
Alpha-Stim every day for the rest of my life?
Answer: No. When your neurotransmitters are balanced and the depression is gone, you will only need to use it from time to time when your life's circumstances suggest that the depression
might come back. Some people who have recovered from anxiety or depression find it best to use the Alpha-Stim two or three times a week for 20 minutes to prevent another episode.
Others put it on a shelf in the closet and only get it down when their mother-in-law comes for a visit.
- Question: I have a friend who wants to come off of his antidepressant
drugs. Will the Alpha-Stim help with that?
Answer: The Alpha-Stim will be a big help with that, but he should only come off his medication under medical supervision. Some physicians who are withdrawing hospitalized
patients from such medications will withdraw them very quickly, some even "cold turkey," while using the Alpha-Stim an hour or more each day. That would be dangerous for most
persons who were not under constant clinical supervision. Physicians usually encourage outpatients to come off their medication a little at a time, reducing it by small amounts every
four or five days, and using the Alpha-Stim daily during that process. Withdrawal can take weeks or months, done this way, but it is much safer, and the patients ultimately get there in
the long run, which is what they wanted to do in the first place.
- Question: Can I use the Alpha-Stim too much? If I use it too many hours a
day, or use it turned up too high, will it hurt me?
Answer: Since the Alpha-Stim works at a level of electricity similar to the body's own
bioelectricity, no known harm can come from its overuse. On the other hand, it is always best to use it according to the directions provided by your licensed health care practitioner, or the
directions for use that come with the device. Most people find that it is actually more effective for chronic conditions when used every other day; just two or three times per week.
However, in acute conditions it may be used more than once a day. It may be helpful for you to order our training video if you do not already have it. If for some reason you do not get a
positive clinical response from it when used following our protocols, contact your health care practitioner, or call our trained medical support staff at
1,818,991-7676. Or you can email us your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. Together we can often devise other, more effective ways of using your Alpha-Stim for your
- Question: I get the best results if I use my Alpha-Stim for one hour, three
times a day, and at night when I go to bed. Am I using it too much?
Answer: If that is how you get your best results, you have found the key to how you should use the Alpha-Stim for your condition. Keep in mind that the procedure will likely change over
time as you continue to improve, and you may find yourself using it for only 10 or 20 minutes a couple of times a week in order to stay at your peak level of functioning.
- Question: If I use my Alpha-Stim more than 20 minutes twice a week, my
pain (or anxiety or depression or insomnia) will not stay gone.
Answer: Good. You have found the best way to use the Alpha-Stim for you. Many people have found that some hiatus between treatments gets better results. That is why we
recommend using it every other day on a maintenance basis.
- Question: When I use the ear clips, I sometimes get light headed or even
dizzy. I don't like that feeling. Is it necessary to feel that in order to get benefit from the treatment.
Answer: You do not have to feel unpleasant feelings in order to get the benefits of Alpha-Stim CES treatment. When you first put apply it, be certain you have the current level set to "0",
then gradually turn it up until you just begin to feel slightly light headed or dizzy. At that point, turn the current back down until the dizzy feeling goes away, and continue to treat yourself at
that level. If you feel dizzy again, turn it down again, but never less than "1". With the Alpha-Stim microcurrent technology, more is not necessarily better. However, the lower the
current the longer it will take. Generally, if the current is set at less than "2", it will take more than 20 minutes. Some people will need an hour or more, especially for the first few treatments.
- Question: While I have heard about and seen people get an immediate
effect from treatment, I always feel better the next day after I use the Alpha-Stim, and I need to use it for several hours at a time. I am not complaining, because it does work well for my anxiety, but why don't I get
an immediate effect?
Answer: While it is true that most people get an immediate effect, in some rare cases people have a delayed effect like yours. In most of the cases where people get a delayed effect, they
also have trouble with prescription drugs. In all these cases we have found one thing in common. The person who has a delayed effect from Alpha-Stim treatment also has a delayed
effect from anesthetics. Usually, when you receive anesthetic injections from your dentist, you are sufficiently numb for the dentist to drill your tooth in a few minutes. For some people, this
can take one-half hour or more. Usually the dentist will make a big deal about it because it is so rare. If you have a delayed response to anesthetics, you'll probably also have a delayed
response to Alpha-Stim. You will also need to use it longer.
- Question: It says in the instruction manual not to use the Alpha-Stim within
three hours of going to bed. My friend uses hers when she goes to bed at night. She says it helps her sleep better, and she puts it on again if she wakes up too early in the morning and it helps her get back to sleep.
Answer: The Alpha-Stim relaxes your body and focuses your mind. If you are going to bed
thinking about a problem, the mental focus may actually keep you awake. That is why we do not recommend using it just before going to bed. However, some people can fall asleep with it
on. It is like caffeine, some people can drink coffee, tea, or soft drinks just before going to bed, while others are doomed to staying awake all night if they have a sip of caffeine after
12:00 noon. If the Alpha-Stim does not keep you awake, it is okay to use it before going to bed.
- Question: Do I need to order earclips even if the pain is in my legs?
Answer: The earclips are used for CES (cranial electrotherapy stimulation), the registered
indications for which are anxiety, depression and insomnia. However, anxiety, depression and insomnia are typically evident, especially in chronic pain syndromes. Where the cause of pain
may originally be in an extremity like your arm or leg, the pain is perceived in the brain. Pain is a complex central nervous system event and treating the site alone is only addressing half the
problem, and missing the most important half. Stay tuned to our site for forthcoming studies currently underway utilizing CES applications in the treatment of chronic pain syndromes like
severe spinal pain and fibromyalgia.
- Question: Do I use the earclips before or after I treat my pain?
Answer: We recommend utilizing the CES application with the earclip electrodes after treating
with the probes or AS-Trode self-adhesive electrodes with our pain protocols. The CES application is found to be so effective that it may reduce or eliminate the pain prior to
completion of the pain protocol. This makes it difficult to ascertain whether you are treating the correct area (this can be useful in determining more exact physiology of the problem underlying the pain).
- Question: After treatment for my back pain, I sometimes feel stiff. What can I do about that?
Answer: You do not need to do anything. The stiffness will reside, and we're certain you
prefer it to pain. Stiff is a magical word meaning "stop" Alpha-Stim treatment for that day. The stiffness will wear off soon.
- Question: I have heard that it is a good idea to treat my surgical scars. How
do I do that?
Answer: Scar treatment is sometimes necessary in order for you to get a good effect from
Alpha-Stim treatment. Scars function as randomly-placed resisters in your bio-circuitry. The
Chinese knew this thousands of years ago and incorporated it into acupuncture as the Mother-Son Law. German physicians discovered it 50 years ago and call it Neural Therapy.
Neural Therapy is now taught in the United States. To use the
Alpha-Stim to treat your scars, place the AS-Trode electrodes on each end of the scar and treat at about 300
microamperes at 0.5 Hz for at least ten minutes per scar, at least four days in a row. You may feel a surge of energy after you treat your scars. This may also increase your pain, as breaking
up bio-resistors will wake up your whole body, including your pain. Treating your pain with the standard
Alpha-Stim 100 pain treatment protocols will alleviate your pain after scar treatment.
- Question: Should I take nutrition supplements and vitamins when I use the
Answer: The Alpha-Stim, when used on your body for pain cessation or control, does this in large part by initiating the repair process in the injured tissues. It does this by, among other
things, increasing the amino acid transport and protein synthesis in the area. It can not do this if the necessary amino acids are not present in the blood stream when you use your Alpha-Stim.
Similarly, when Alpha-Stim CES is used, it will effect a balancing of your neurotransmitters by stimulating the brain to make more of those you do not have enough of, until their level has
increased to the extent they and the other neurotransmitters can mutually control each other's production. The Alpha-Stim can not help your brain make neurotransmitters if the building
blocks for them are not present in the blood stream. So it is very important to eat a balanced diet while using the Alpha-Stim, and that includes the major amino acids, vitamins, minerals,
and other micronutrients. We think everyone should take dietary supplements. You should also drink plenty of water as it is necessary for electrical conductivity in your body.
- Question: What kind of food should I eat in order to get all the things
necessary for body or neurotransmitter repair?
Answer: Your health care practitioner is your best local source of information regarding what is required and how best to find it. You can also get helpful information from your local health
food store. In general, you should eat natural, preferably organic whole foods, at least 40 percent raw fruits and vegetables. To optimize digestion, do not mix proteins and
carbohydrates, eat fruit alone one-half hour before, or two hours after other foods, and avoid white sugar and white flour. You should also avoid artificial sweeteners, especially if you suffer
from headaches. You can safely use Stevia for sweetening, available at your health food store.
- Question: Is it normal for my ears to turn red after I have used the earclips?
Answer: Any electrical stimulation can cause skin irritation and it is usually mild and self limiting. This is more prevalent in fair skinned people or those with sensitive skin. If a problem
persists, consult your medical professional or try an alternative method of application such as applying the
AS-Trode self-adhesive silver electrodes to the mastoid process (the bony
area behind the ears), or even the shoulders. The stimulation can relax the vascular system in the area which will turn the skin red.
- Question: How long do the electrodes last? Mine aren't sticky any longer.
Can I tape them to my body?
Answer: Electromedical Products International, Inc. has gone to great lengths to research and procure the best possible electrodes for use with the
Alpha-Stim. We are concerned primarily
with efficacy and you should be too. The adhesive gel on the electrodes is the conductive medium insuring proper contact and distribution of the electrical signal with the body. There
are many variables which cause this gel to lose its effectiveness including humidity, amount of hair or sweat on the skin, and cleanliness of the area where applied. When the gel begins to
lose its ability to adhere properly to the skin, it is time to get new electrodes. Trying to extend the life by taping them to the body is insuring limited or negative results. Always use fresh
electrodes applied to a clean, dry skin surface and only use
AS-Trode brand silver electrodes designed for use with the
- Question: Can the Alpha-Stim be used along with drugs my doctor has
prescribed? Can it help reduce my need for pharmaceuticals?
Answer: Although the Alpha-Stim is safe and effective for use in the treatment of its registered indications, caution should be exercised when using CES with certain types of drugs, such as
medication for high blood pressure. As the CES relaxes you, it brings your blood pressure down. If a drug then kicks in and lowers it even further, it can be dangerous. It is easy to
regulate use of the Alpha-Stim but this is not so with drugs. Also, if you are trying to get off of drugs you feel may be damaging to your health, it is important that you do so under a doctor's
supervision. Many drugs cannot just be dropped but must be reduced gradually. The Alpha-Stim can help accomplish this and is a safe, effective method, but drugs are not, so
caution must be exercised and, again, involve your doctor in the process.
Topic C: Other questions related to
- Question: Will insurance pay for this?
Answer: Many plans that cover durable medical equipment will pay for the Alpha-Stim. However, many plan administrators and case managers are unfamiliar with our technology
and, since it is broadly classed along with cheap TENS devices, they assume we are just another TENS. If a claim is denied, it is important to work with your doctor and insurance
company to educate them on the benefits of this technology. We have more clinical studies than many drugs and are proven efficacious for our registered indications. Some insurance
carriers have mistakenly classed the Alpha-Stim as an investigational device. We can provide them with our clearance to market this technology by regulatory agencies in Europe (CE
mark) and the USA (FDA). As this technology may be new to your insurance carrier, it is important not to take "no" for an answer. Your doctor knows the validity of this technology or
would not have prescribed its use in your case. It is cleared to market and deserves proper reimbursement. As a manufacturer, we have limited clout with the insurance carriers.
However, the more doctors and patients who request proper reimbursement for this valuable technology, the more inclined they are to listen. In the end, this technology can mean significant
savings for the insurer over drugs, surgery and secondary and tertiary problems caused by other types of medical intervention.
- Question: Is this covered under Medicare/Medicaid?
Answer: Typically, these programs will want you to rent for a few months to demonstrate
efficacy, after which they will only pay a nominal amount. For financially distressed patients we, and many of our Authorized Alpha-Stim Distributors, offer Rent-to-Own programs, or
Quality Assured Previously Owned units at a reduced cost (Note: Quality Assured Previously Owned units have been quality tested and replenished with all new accessories and are subject
to availability. However, they only come with a One Year instead of a Five Year Limited Warranty). Ask your local Authorized Alpha-Stim Distributor or EPI (in areas where we do
not yet have an Authorized Alpha-Stim Distributor) about these options.
- Question: Why doesn't my doctor know about this?
Answer: Doctors are educated in institutions largely funded by pharmaceutical interests with
multi-million dollar (and larger) budgets. These large companies have the resources to continue to educate doctors after they graduate, serve their internships and go into private or
institutional practices. Smaller, innovative device companies such as EPI have had to build awareness through word-of-mouth and participation in medical conferences not dominated by
pharmaceutical interests. It is not the doctor's fault that these new technologies take longer to become known. It is the nature of healthcare in the US and the nature of the medical
profession which is necessarily cautious in adopting new methods of medical intervention. Also, more and more, patients are taking charge and taking responsibility for their own
wellness and educating themselves and their doctors about technologies such as ours which offer unprecedented efficacy without the negative side effects of drugs. Eventually, doctors will
utilize technologies such as Alpha-Stim as a first line of defense, especially in treatment of chronic disorders where the long term effects of drugs can cause secondary and tertiary
problems, sometimes worse than the ones originally treated. Doctors that are on the cutting edge of the wellness movement will seek us out, but most need to hear about our benefits from
patients who are willing to take charge of their own well being.
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