Is static magnetic therapy a viable option for those seeking a more holistic health experience? Numerous studies indicate that this magnetic therapy can provide relief for inflammation, pain, depression, micro-circulation, healing, and more. There are an equal number of studies with findings which do not support any health benefits from magnetic therapies. As with many less conventional health options, some trial and error may be required to find out what works best for you.
In a study titled, “Effects of a Static Magnetic Field of Either Polarity on Skin Microcirculation”1, researchers found that with exposure to static magnets, the measure of skin blood flow was reduced to a point which was “Statistically Significant”. Along these same lines, Thomas Skalak, a researcher at the University of Virginia2 concluded that magnetic therapy, when applied to inflammation, could help regulate blood vessel dilation and constriction. Skalak indicated proper magnetic therapy may one day be a viable alternative to ice pack therapy for sprains and contusions. He says that he plans to continue this research as he sees static magnetic therapy applications for sports teams, schools, and retirement communities.
Dr. Mercola stresses on his website3, that the strength and polarity of the magnets are to be considered. He advises that magnets used for static magnetic therapy should be strong enough to attract and hold a paperclip through a sock. A typically refrigerator door magnet would be far too weak to pass this test. Dr. Mercola says that he has been sleeping on a unipolar magnetic mattress pad for several months and that he believes this has helped him with some health challenges. He advises people to avoid bipolar magnetic mattresses or mattress pads as they could direct “potentially dangerous positive magnetic energy into your body”.
Dr. Mercola explains it this way, “Magnet polarity is also important, as each magnet has two sides, negative and positive. The negative end, or north pole, generally has a cooling, sedating effect that is useful for relieving pain and inflammation. The positive end, or the south pole, has the opposite effect and is stimulating, even to bacteria and viruses. So the positive end of the magnet needs to be used cautiously as it could actually promote disease and increase pain if it is used incorrectly. Because of this, the positive end of a magnet is typically used VERY carefully for conditions such as numbness, weak muscles, paralysis and scarring.”
In a study4 conducted at Sichuan University in Chengdu, China, researches concluded that static magnetic therapy “significantly” reduced pain levels in mice by measuring discomfort caused by experimental tooth movement, with a protocol known as the Mouse Grimace Scale.
If you have thought about trying static magnetic therapy, there are several online retailers for these types of magnets. Dr. Mercola recommends using magnets which have the north and south poles clearly marked.
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