When you are looking for a way to treat your medical issues or improve your well-being, you also want therapies and treatments that are safe.
What is the point of a new treatment if the side effects are just as bad as your original condition, right?
You may be looking for an alternative to traditional medicine for this reason.
PEMF therapy is a type of treatment that could help you, and because it is exceptionally safe, it is often the best option for many different ailments and conditions.
This guide explores the side effects of PEMF stimulation and what you should know before using it.
You will be happy to learn that PEMF therapy is quite safe and has little or no side effects for most people.
How can that be?
Keep reading to learn more about this non-invasive and safe treatment that can be used on a wide range of health problems.
What is PEMF Therapy
Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy is the use of low-frequency, low-intensity energy to restore the body’s natural and necessary electrical charges.
Every cell within your body needs this energy to perform its functions, and these small but vital electrical charges can become depleted over time.
This happens because of aging, damage, and disease.
And once the electrical charge of a cell is low, it can stop functioning correctly or even die.
PEMF stimulation is using non-invasive, safe pulses of electricity to penetrate the body and restore function to your cells.
PEMF therapy has been widely studied over the past thirty years.
It has been studied in animals and people in thousands of trials and studies, and it has been tested for its effectiveness at treating many different illnesses, conditions, and symptoms.
These research studies include double-blind, placebo-controlled experiments, which is considered to be the gold-standard in medical research.
Because it works to heal a cell’s natural function, PEMF therapy can be used to treat many different conditions.
It is most effective at reducing inflammation, relieving pain, healing damaged tissues, and improving circulation, which means that it is applicable and useful for addressing a vast array of medical problems.
Safety of PEMF Therapy
Those who opt for alternative treatments like PEMF therapy may do so for a variety of reasons.
Because many conventional therapies, especially medications, often result in unwanted and sometimes severe side effects, alternatives that are safer and less invasive are often preferred by many patients.
Those who are looking for a safer, longer-lasting way to treat chronic conditions or improve their health should be sure they understand the possible side effects of any treatment option, including PEMF therapy.
After over three decades of research on PEMF stimulation on many parts of the body, the published data shows that PEMF therapy is beneficial for a great many disorders and that it is safe for most people to use.
Nearly every study ever published on PEMF therapy reports no or only minor side effects (1).
The safety of this therapy is indeed the reason that is has been so widely tested and applied to various medical conditions.
Even long-term and repetitive use have been deemed to be safe, and this is true also of exposure of sensitive tissues like the brain to magnetic waves (2).
Because the pulses of electromagnetic energy are administered at low intensities and use extremely low frequencies, they are complementary to your body’s cells.
They provide no adverse reactions within the body.
Of those known reactions to PEMF therapy, all are quite predictable and only apply to a small part of the population.
These are easily avoided. Knowing and understanding the appropriate uses of PEMF therapy, using your device according to the manufacturer’s recommendations, and discussing your treatment with your doctor at each visit will ensure that your treatment goes smoothly.
Side Effects of PEMF Therapy
PEMF stimulation is known to improve blood circulation and improve cell regeneration.
As such, it can influence the absorption of medications and supplements.
Depending on your overall health and your lifestyle, PEMF therapy may improve your cells’ uptake of medicines that affect your thyroid, for example.
If you take thyroid medicine or supplements, monitor your health closely and talk with your doctor about any changes you may notice.
Those who use PEMF devices that utilize adhesive pads may sometimes experience skin irritation where the device is attached.
This is generally from the adhesive, not the PEMF therapy itself.
Using a different type of device or cleaning your skin well after each use can help with this minor reaction.
For some, a minor headache may develop after initial PEMF stimulation sessions.
It is not known why this occurs, but this generally remedies itself quickly and does not return.
Be sure you are staying hydrated and eating a healthy diet to prevent such effects.
PEMF therapy stimulates nerve cells, and if these neurons are already inflamed and producing pain, the improved circulation and stimulation may temporarily heighten that pain.
This is especially true over scar tissue or healing bones.
This effect is usually temporary, and you can alleviate this by applying the stimulation to areas near the pain but not directly on it.
PEMF can quickly increase the circulation of blood to a given area.
Because of this sudden influx of blood, you may feel an uncomfortableness or tightness in an area just after therapy begins.
This will subside quickly and should not be concerning.
Sometimes, the increased circulation results in temporary increases in oxidative stress, so it is a good idea to ensure you are getting enough antioxidants in your diet to counteract these effects.
If you have hives, the sudden increase in blood flow can temporarily make your condition worse instead of better.
While inflammation will reduce over time and with repeated therapy, an initial worsening of your condition is possible.
PEMF stimulation is quite effective at lowering blood pressure.
For those with hypotension or low blood pressure, this effect can be harmful.
If you are taking medication for high blood pressure, PEMF therapy can improve its impact and end up lowering your blood pressure too much, as well.
Anyone with blood pressure issues should monitor their pressure carefully while using PEMF therapy to ensure that it does not reach an unsafe level.
If you start to feel faint or lightheaded, you should discontinue your therapy session and talk with your doctor.
Try to rise slowly after a PEMF therapy session in case of dizziness, as well.
PEMF therapy has not been evaluated for its safety in pregnant women.
As such, women who are pregnant and young children should not use PEMF therapy until we know more about how it could influence them.
In rare cases of severe malnutrition, autonomic disorders, and neurotoxicity, PEMF therapy can cause uncomfortable symptoms, including agitation, changes in temperature, dizziness, and fatigue.
These are likely symptoms of a more significant problem with your nutrient intake.
Stop PEMF therapy until you talk with your healthcare provider or a nutritionist about how to support your condition’s needs.
How to Handle PEMF Side Effects
In most of the above instances, reports of these effects are rare and sporadic, but it can be helpful to know what to expect in case you experience a similar reaction yourself.
If your response to PEMF stimulation because severe or intolerable, you should lesson your intensity, change your frequency, or use it for shorter periods to see if you can find the right variables that will work best for you.
Talk with your doctor or physical therapist about ways to alter your PEMF treatments to meet your needs.
Because PEMF treatments are very low in intensity, it can take some time to see results, especially for certain conditions, like insomnia.
For many chronic conditions, you will need to exercise patience with your treatment and stick with it for at least one month before assuming that things are not working.
Anyone who has an implanted electrical device, such as a cochlear implant or pacemaker, should use caution when using PEMF stimulation.
Never place a PEMF device directly over your electrical implant, and talk with your doctor before using PEMF stimulation.
While there have been very few reported cases of interference, the possibility exists.
By anticipating possible outcomes while using PEMF therapy, you can avoid those that apply to you and monitor your health to ensure that you are not experiencing any unwanted side effects.
Knowing that you may experience some minor discomfort during your first few sessions will help you feel safer about continuing with your treatment, too.
The majority of the adverse effects of PEMF stimulation are both temporary and mild.
These can be managed by reducing or discontinuing therapy.
Those with stronger reactions may want to consult with their doctor before returning to treatment.
There could be a more significant medical issue influencing your health of which you are unaware.
PEMF Safety Precautions
You should always talk with your doctor or healthcare provider before beginning any new therapy, including PEMF stimulation.
He or she may have more information about the best way to use this treatment and can advise you about any possible interactions.
Never stop taking any medications before consulting with your doctor, either.
Every time you visit a doctor, receive a screening, or undergo treatment, always disclose that you use PEMF therapy at home.
You should never use more than one PEMF device at a time.
If you have more than once device and are trying to determine which is the best option for you, you should use them separately and space out your different therapy sessions over several months or weeks so that you can tell which is the better choice.
If you have an implanted electrical device, you should never place a PEMF probe or pad directly over the device.
Caution should be used with using any sort of PEMF stimulation on your body, so talk with your doctor about how this type of electrotherapy could affect your device.
Other than the minimal and minor risks discussed above, PEMF therapy has been deemed to be quite safe and could be used by most people without any trouble.
It is safe to use by those with pre-existing conditions. It can even be used on sensitive tissues like the brain and your eyes.
It generally does not interfere with medications except where previously discussed.
Most people tolerate this treatment exceptionally well and experience no adverse reactions.
As with all things related to your well-being, if you have concerns, you should talk with your doctor.
He or she will be able to advise you on how best to use PEMF therapy, if it could be causing any problems you are having, and if it could interfere with your current treatments.
When starting to use PEMF stimulation at home, you should start slowly and with low-intensity, short, low-frequency sessions.
Over time, you can lengthen the time and increase or change the other variables to suit your needs.
Electrotherapies like PEMF stimulation can change your blood flow, stimulate various kinds of cells within your body, repair damaged tissues, cause a reduction in blood pressure and heart rate, and help you feel relaxed.
It can also influence the absorption of certain medications and supplements, which can change how you feel.
Because it affects your brain waves, it can also make you feel more or less alert, depending on the frequencies you use.
From three decades of medical research, we now know that PEMF therapy is extremely safe and well-tolerated by the vast majority of its users.
There is a great deal of evidence supporting these claims, and only in very rare cases are adverse effects noted.
In general, these tend to be minor and temporary.
Only those with particular conditions should be cautioned against using the form of treatment to improve their health.
In conclusion, PEMF therapy should be considered to be safe and effective for addressing a wide range of conditions and for promoting overall well-being.
If you have side effects, talk with your doctor.