The Spectrum of Sensitivity to Electromagnetic Radiation

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Introduction

Electronic devices have gone beyond just useful conveniences. These days, society increasingly depends on them to accomplish even the simplest tasks.  Make no mistake, these devices have been of tremendous benefit to human progress and our quality of life. Tasks that would have been impossible a century ago are accomplished in hours, communication has never been more fluid, and information cannot be more omnipresent. 

However, with more and more electronic gadgets finding their way into our daily lives, concerns have been raised about their harmful effects. Electromagnetic fields (EMF) created by electronic devices have been increasingly linked as the cause of many uncomfortable symptoms. 

As more light is shed on the effects of EMF on human health, more disconcerting findings are being discovered, many of which will be addressed in this article.

Although research into the long-term effects of these radiations on an average person is still significantly lacking, the symptoms are obvious in certain groups of people. The difference in reaction to EMF radiation defines the spectrum of sensitivity. In this article, we will be looking at EMF sensitivity and the risks to susceptible groups.

Is Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity Real?

Discussions about Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS), also known as EMF sensitivity, are often met with ridicule. Proponents of the dire consequences of EMF on human and animal health are treated with the same energy as children discussing bigfoot. The response is the same every time: “It’s all in your head.” 

However, several independent studies have provided evidence of sensitivity to electromagnetic fields. Longtime public health researcher of the University of California Berkeley’s School of Public Health, Joel Moskowitz has dedicated a website that collects research and studies on EHS. He hopes to provide the scientific support to EMF sensitivity that is often missing in public discussions.

Prolonged and pervasive exposure to EMFs is thought to provoke oxidative stress where free radicals cannot be sufficiently controlled, freeing them to attack and damage cell tissues. Oxidative stress explains the more common symptoms of EMF like dizziness and headache. Worse still, electromagnetic fields have also been linked to increased tumor risks, reproductive issues, and cognitive dysfunction.

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Image from WHYY

Skepticism on EMF sensitivity is especially high in the United States, which is, ironically, one of the biggest consumers of electronic appliances globally.

The cause of confusion and skepticism about EMF sensitivity can be traced to guidelines for determining EMF limits in the electronic industries. While manufacturers of WiFi, smartphones, microwaves and other strong emitters of EMF can legally say that their products are designed within established safety standards — the basis of those guidelines was poorly informed in the first place.

These guidelines were established on the theory that the EMF threats were mainly heat and burns. Therefore, safety standards only enforced EMF heating limits on these products. 

A change is already happening across Europe, with several European governments updating safety standards to reduce and confront EMF sensitivity. Unfortunately, next to no research exists on the long-term implications of continued exposure to electromagnetic fields.

What Causes EMF Sensitivity?

Every object in the world creates an electromagnetic field of its own, even the human body. However, the explosion of electronic gadgets, especially mobile devices, which emit radio frequency (RF) radiation, has significantly increased EMF sensitivity. We are now constantly bathed in a stream of electromagnetic fields.

Exposure to a high dosage of electromagnetic fields causes a range of unpleasant symptoms that is called EMF sensitivity. In other words, exposure to electromagnetic fields causes EMF sensitivity.

What are the Symptoms of EMF Sensitivity

Commonly reported symptoms of EMF sensitivity include:

  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Burning Sensations
  • Cognitive dysfunction
  • Prickling skin and rashes
  • Musculoskeletal pains

Susceptible Groups to Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity 

There is an observable difference in the way exposure to EMF affects different classes of people. That is, certain demographics are affected to different degrees than others. The spectrum of sensitivity to EMF is an attempt to more precisely identify and describe the specific risks to the different groups observed. 

Below, we discuss electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS) in groups that are more susceptible to electromagnetic hypersensitivity.

EMF Sensitivity in Children

Children’s developing nervous system and brain tissue makes them particularly vulnerable to the effect of EMF radiation. What’s more, children’s cranial bone marrow absorbs radiation 10 times more than that of adults. 

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Image from UCBaby

Unlike the older generation, children born in the last few years are exposed to EMF radiation earlier than ever. This is due to the massive rollout of electronic devices in the form of smartphones, routers, tablets, etc, as well as all the electromagnetic technologies that support them like WiFi and Bluetooth.

The most common type of cancer in children, childhood leukemia, has been increasingly linked to exposure to a form of EMF called ELF. ELF is an acronym for extremely low frequency, and it describes electromagnetic fields of very low energy that move in long waves. Power lines are also known sources of ELFs in the modern world, but common household items like hair dryers even produce these fields.

More concerning is the fact that most gadget manufacturers neglect to include children when testing their devices for safety.

Consequently, proactive governments across the world are taking strict measures to protect children against EMF. France, Australia, and Spain, for instance, are headed in the right direction with laws to reduce or eradicate the use of WiFi in kindergartens. 

EMF Sensitivity in Adults

Adults have fully developed body tissues and therefore, do not often experience an immediate or intense reaction to pervasive EMF exposure. Adults have different sensitivity to EMF, and therefore the severity of the symptoms varies. Most adults will not face debilitating ailments from EMFs, but that does not mean they won’t be affected on a cellular level. 

The intensity and volume of electromagnetic radiation an adult interacts with obviously determines its health consequences. However, the common case is that only one person in the household experiences severe symptoms. This is mostly due to the difference in genetic makeup, previous exposure, and underlying illnesses.

The World Health Organization’s website notes the difference in symptoms experienced by different people on the spectrum of sensitivity. 

Many of these symptoms range from minor discomforts, including dizziness, headaches, and burning skin tinglings — to more dire conditions like insomnia, burning sensations, nausea, and memory problems. Severe EMF sensitivity is termed Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity or EHS.

EHS can significantly affect your lifestyle, making it difficult to get work done or rest comfortably. Short of uprooting your life and moving to a more remote environment, there is little help for people with EHS symptoms.

EMF Sensitivity in Pregnant Women

Studies on EMF sensitivity in pregnant women are even more definitive. Electromagnetic fields are dangerous to both the health of the fetus and the fertility of the mother.

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Image from News-Medical.net

Recent discoveries show that increased exposure of pregnant women to EMFs increases the risk of miscarriage. This issue is more common in urban areas where there are more sources and higher intensity of EMFs. Pregnant women subjected to a high degree of EMFs are three times more likely to experience a miscarriage.

Previous research failed to establish the connections between EMF and pregnancy because of a focus on spontaneous abortions. Research with a limited or predetermined focus is a recurring issue in the study of EMFs and human health. The result is an unknown number of unacknowledged individuals with EHS suffering without help from medical institutions.

A study conducted by Dr. Taylor of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Yale revealed that EMF could cause significant behavioral changes in offspring when the mother is exposed to electromagnetic radiation of the frequency and intensity of mobile devices. The researchers observed that the offspring of the mice in the experiment suffered from lower memory and had increased hyperactivity.

Additionally, EMF exposure has been linked to lower egg count in women; increased risk of asthma, obesity, and thyroid problems in the offspring.

The verdict is still out on the extent to which EMF is implicated in cases of babies with congenital disease. Nevertheless, Pregnant women are high on the spectrum of sensitivity to EMF and should take active measures to protect themselves. Especially from RF-EMF, that’s common with mobile devices.

Closing Thoughts

Pregnant women, children, and individuals predisposed to EHS rank high on the spectrum of sensitivity. And should be protected from areas with high electromagnetic radiation. 

Action in the United States against EMF sensitivity is yet to be seen. The general attitude towards the EHS, especially from the government, is a skeptical one. Unfortunately, this all is in the face of a solid and growing body of research highlighting the symptoms and effects of EMF sensitivity across the spectrum.

Fortunately, the scientific community is starting to take a stance against big tech. For instance, 180 scientists and doctors from 36 countries have petitioned for the rollout of 5G to be deferred until the effects of the technology on humans can be sufficiently studied.

However, we don’t all have to suspend our lives or discard the gadgets that have become a vital part of our daily activities. Aires Tech’s Lifetune products help you create a round-the-clock safe zone from EMF without interrupting your connectivity or regular lifestyle. 

Check out how Aires Tech can help you eliminate the EMF sensitivity through EMF modulation without interrupting your daily activities. 

Updated February 29th, 2024

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