Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Quell: is it all it's cracked up to be?

I have been given this product as part of a product review through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by Neurometrix/Quell.


I've been playing with my Quell since I got back from my California trip at the end of September. Even though that's a long time, I still haven't gotten to play with this to the extent I would like to so far, like with my back spasms.

What is Quell?

Quell works by electrically stimulating sensory nerves to carry neural pulses to the brain, which help to block pain signals within the body. Each pain-relief session lasts for an hour and the device can automatically turn on again after another hour if you're still wearing it. There are two different kinds of electrodes - normal and sport. The sport is ideal when using in warmer weather or in situations where sweating is happening as it absorbs a lot less of the moisture from our bodies or environments. 

The Quell is, according to their site, approximately 5x stronger than other over-the-counter tens-unit devices, too, meaning that the pulse hitting your leg can get pretty dang strong. One of the things that is difficult to get used to is that the intensity of the device within the first two minutes grows. 

Fear not, though! There's an app for that!

This app totally puts total control of the device in the palm of your hands, helping you to control and adjust the intensity of the Quell, track usage, and remind you to take the device off when your skin needs a break. It can also help track your sleep if you wear the device to bed. 

As for helping with widespread pain, I'm not entirely sure about that one. I have certainly experienced a lot of relief in some symptoms, but these are mostly from my feet up to maybe my hips. I haven't had the thought to put this on during the worst of my lower back pain as this happens during spasms and I can't really move, let alone snag this from potentially another room and put it on. I'm definitely going to aim to try to test this out, though, the next time T and I are together at home and my back freezes up.

The bulk of my pain is very localized right now in the upper back/neck/shoulder regions. The Quell doesn't really help me with that but does help my lower body pain. The amazing relief that I receive specifically in the knee I place the electrode under? It's magic. I'm limping a lot less and able to handle stairs with more ease within the past few months, meaning this has helped my inflammatory diseases as well as my patellofemoral arthralgia.

It fits under most clothing pretty well, though jeans in the women category tend to be tighter in the calf. You can usually see that I have something interesting on my leg

This has turned flying into much less of a pain for me because I get relief from my hustle through the airport in addition to relief on the plane. The app comes in extremely handy here, too, as I can easily pump up the intensity when I have had to hustle in order to relieve the pain in my calves and/or knees.

It's worth it just for how much flying I've done lately. Still, it helps make trips to the grocery store and other mundane, everyday things more bearable, too. I've been able to be a lot more active recently, even on days my lower body initially feels awful.

I can't say that it will help with all-over body pain for all of us, especially when it hasn't necessarily done so for me. However, if you have knee problems and can afford this product, it could definitely help. 

Want to learn more? Visit the Quell official site. They are running some sales through November 28th with free shipping over $75 in the lower 48 US states. You could also find these on location in Walgreens, CVS, and Target stores or online with Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond, and more.





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