How does Magnetic Therapy work?
Pulsed Magnetic Therapy devices of both high and low frequency work because our body contains a large number of free ions and even electrically balanced molecules (such as water), which act as dipoles because of the direction of their charges. When subjected to a magnetic field which is calibrated to a specific frequency in order to treat a particular medical pathology, there is an increase in the movement of these substances, because they are in an oscillating magnetic field and are repelled and attracted according to their electric charge.
The effect is not intense enough to generate an amount of heat which needs to be taken into account in therapy, even if in some cases patients have felt that heat sensation. This extra movement accelerates the organisms’ chemical processes, thus aiding the sodium-potassium pump and it also helps regulate metabolic processes which may have been affected by a chronic or inflammatory health condition.
Magnetic therapy also acts on bone, the lymph fluid and muscles, speeding up trophism and helping in rehabilitation.
WHY IS MAGNETIC THERAPY A PAIN KILLER?
The analgesic effect of magnetic therapy is the result of various biological effects; particularly anti inflammatory, produced in human body tissue. Magnetic therapy relaxes the muscles, improves localized blood circulation, thereby relaxing the smooth muscle surrounding the blood vessels which in turn dilate. The release of endorphins acts as a pain reliever; hyperaemia and increased blood flow all contribute to the anti-inflammatory effect. The normalizing effect of magnetic therapy on the membrane action potential helps pain relief.
FOR HOW LONG AND HOW MANY TIMES A DAY CAN I USE MAGNETIC THERAPY?
The course of treatment will be longer or shorter depending on the device we use and its features, particularly the Gauss rating. We recommend reading the instruction booklet that accompanies each magnetic therapy device very carefully. In general, use should not exceed more than one daily session.
ARE THEY ANY SIDE EFFECTS?
Magnetic therapy is notable for having one of the lowest numbers of side effects. What is absolutely clear is the specific risk to those patients fitted with a pacemaker, as there is no doubt that a machine that generates intense magnetic pulses will affect a pace maker and we should not take any risks.
The use of magnetic therapy in patients with tumours is not recommended precisely because of the therapy’s capacity to accelerate trophic actions. In practically all tumour pathologies the application of electrotherapy is not recommended.
Magnetic products are not recommended for use during pregnancy, despite the fact that no studies on the risks have as yet been carried out.
As a precautionary procedure, and bearing in mind that each device has very different power and frequency features, the instruction booklet should be read carefully, paying special attention to side effects and so avoiding running unnecessary risks.
DOES EVIDENCE EXIST ON THE BENEFITS OF MAGNETIC THERAPY FOR OSTEOPOROSIS?
Ask any physiotherapist working in the public or private healthcare sector, and they will be able to give many examples of the excellent results of bone density readings taken before and after treatment.
Astronauts who suffered from Osteoporosis after long periods of time spent away from the Earth’s magnetic field always improved on their return to Earth. Some of the research carried out has been financed by NASA, which has led to progress on the use of magnetic therapy in space craft crew.
WHICH MACHINE SHOULD I CHOOSE?
It is always advisable to seek professional advice and get in contact with online suppliers who have access to advice from healthcare professionals. Generally it will be easier to access information on health issue websites, rather than shops.
Here are some suggestions on what to look out for;
● First of all, make sure that you are buying a registered device, make sure that the device is clearly marked. A registered device will bear the CE mark followed by four numbers, for example, Certified Medical Device CE0051.
● Make sure it reaches a magnetic field power of at least 100 Gauss; this should be clearly specified on the technical data sheet. The efficiency of a device below 100 Gauss is considerably less. There are 100 Gauss devices on sale for less than the price of a 50-80 Gauss device. Pay careful attention to the device’s strength rather than be blinded by product advertising.
● There is a definite advantage if the device has more than one output as you can treat different parts of the body at the same time.
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE LIFETIME OF A MAGNETIC THERAPY MACHINE?
Compared to other electro therapy devices, magnetic therapy has added advantages, for example;
● The device does not wear out, in contrast to laser treatment where parts need to be replaced in order for the treatment to be effective.
● There is no need to replace the electrodes.
● As long as it is plugged in to the mains electricity the magnetic field is generated
● The parts are simple and strong, it is unlikely that there will be technical problems.
Proper use of the device will ensure a lifetime’s use.
WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT FEATURES OF MAGNETIC THERAPY?
Magnetic therapy provides a range of beneficial health effects:
● Relaxing effect on the smooth and striated muscles, it works to relax strained muscles, decompressing the bone joints and freeing them from excessive pressure. It has proved particularly successful for patients who suffer from prolapsed or a “slipped disc” and spinal disc hernias.
● Analgesic effect achieved by relaxing the muscles and surrounding tissues, improving blood circulation and reducing the pressure on arteries and blood vessels so reducing inflammation.
● Bone density readings have proved the beneficial effects of magnetic therapy on stimulating bone formation, it has been demonstrated that pulsed magnetic fields encourage calcium in the bone and is therefore useful in physiotherapy for a number of medical complaints.
ARE PORTABLE MAGNETIC THERAPY DEVICES EFFECTIVE?
Absolutely, but it would have been impossible to imagine a few years ago that we would be able to own the powerful and efficient devices in our homes
Progress has been made in reducing the size of these 100 Gauss devices and regulating frequency. To achieve the right results, the strength of the magnetic field needs to be 100 Gauss and the frequency should range between 1 and 100 Hz.