(Almost) All about CES
CES, or Cranial Electrotherapy Stimulation, refers to the application of microcurrent to the brain specifically.
Some situations where CES may be beneficial are:
Depressed mood, loss or grief
Anger or irritability
Sleeplessness (insomnia), nightmares
Lack of concentration / shortened attention span
After a stroke or spinal cord injury
Lack of drive and motivation
There are many abbreviations used to refer to the action of applying electricity to the brain. Probably the most infamous one is ECT, or Electro-Convulsive Therapy.
This one (wrongly) got really bad press in the best-seller book from the 60s, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. With ECT, large doses of current are passed through the brain in a very short span of time. This “resets” the brain, which can improve certain mental conditions.
However, it also causes all the muscles in the body to contract. In the early days of ECT, no muscle relaxants (or tranquilisers) were used and the force of the contracting muscles was sometimes so intense that bones snapped.
Nowadays, muscle relaxants and tranquilisers help make ECT a safe and rapid alternative to drug therapy, but most people still associate it with its crude early use. ECT achieves its effects by administering large doses of electricity over a short period of time.
Research has shown, however, that giving small doses of electricity over longer periods of time is just as effective, if not more so. When it comes to electrotherapy, “less is more”.
Even better, you don’t need to see a psychiatrist to get CES. Plus, you don’t need to see your friendly orthopaedic surgeon afterwards.