Magnetic therapy is a growing field of medicine that harnesses the power of magnets to deliver meaningful treatment. While the current research is new, magnets have been used in health for millennia. Over 2,000 years ago, Asian and European folk healers used magnets with the belief that they could actively pull out impurities and diseases from the body.
Today, studies on magnetic therapy have ranged from relieving pain to reducing symptoms of cancer. Learn more about magnetic therapy and its potential benefits below.
What is Magnetic Therapy?
So, what is magnetic therapy and what is magnetic therapy used for? Magnetic therapy refers to applying magnets to the body as a means of bringing about any sort of physiological change. Static field magnetic therapy is the most well-known form of biomagnetic therapy. It involves placing magnets in contact with the skin and has led to the production of magnetic bracelets, jewelry, and special mattress pads. Electromagnetic therapy uses electrically charged therapeutic magnets, which form an electromagnetic field.
Theories behind magnetic therapy cite the way that molecules have their own small magnetic fields created by the small electric charge inherent to these molecules. Certain conditions may cause imbalances in this magnetic field. By applying magnetic therapy, you may be able to reharmonize the body’s electromagnetic field and improve your health.
Alternately, molecules carry charged ions, like calcium and potassium, that are necessary for proper signaling and communication between cells. The use of a magnetic therapy device may alter the way that these ions operate, potentially boosting certain biological functions.
Magnetic Therapy Benefits
With such a broad mechanism of action, magnetic therapy may have a wide range of benefits.
Pain relief is the most frequently stated application for magnetic therapy. This is what led to the growth of magnetic bracelets and jewelry. Do magnetic bracelets work? There is very little evidence to actually suggest that magnets can affect pain in any way, but some studies suggest that applying static field magnetic therapy may potentially reduce pain symptoms associated with fibromyalgia.
Insomnia is a surprisingly common issue in the country. While a lack of sleep can leave you physically tired, extended periods of sleep deprivation or bad quality sleep can lead to some serious physical, mental, and emotional symptoms, while also potentially harming those around you.
A study on patients with insomnia found that impulse magnetic field therapy may be beneficial in reducing symptoms and supporting healthy sleep. Results of the study showed improved scores among 70 percent of the patients who received active treatment. This included reductions in sleep latency, daytime sleepiness, sleepiness after waking up, daytime headaches, and concentration issues.
Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a proven treatment for depression. The procedure stimulates nerve cells in the brain using magnetic fields, which then improves symptoms of depression. The use of magnetic therapy products has been particularly effective in those who are unresponsive to medication and other traditional treatments for depression.
A mouse study found that magnetic therapy may play a role in reducing cancer cells. Mice that had been injected with cancer cells showed reduced tumor size when exposed to magnetic fields. The magnet exposure inhibited tumor growth and caused cancer cell death via apoptosis, though the exact nature of how the magnets reduced cancer cells is still not well understood.
Other studies suggest the use of magnetic nanoparticles in a form of hyperthermia therapy. Hyperthermia therapy involves using high temperatures to destroy abnormal tissue while leaving healthy tissue intact. Clinicians can inject magnetic nanoparticles into a tumor and activate them using alternating magnetic fields. This heats up the nanoparticles and damages the cancerous tissue.
The biggest advantage of magnetic field therapy is that it is inherently noninvasive. Using therapeutic magnets or a magnetic bracelet for magnetic healing is often less disruptive than conventional treatments. This reduces the potential complications that can come from surgery, which also means a faster recovery period. Consult your doctor to determine if magnetic therapy is right for you.
At Immunity Therapy Center, our goal is to provide objective, updated, and research-based information on all health-related topics. This article is based on scientific research and/or other scientific articles. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by Dr. Carlos Bautista, a Board Certified Medical Doctor at Immunity Therapy Center. All information published on the site must undergo an extensive review process to ensure accuracy. This article contains trusted sources with all references hyperlinked for the reader's visibility.