Electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure is linked to many acute and chronic illnesses and conditions, and electrical sensitivities are a serious emerging public health concern in which most doctors have no training. Everyday we are exposed to EMFs from a number of common sources that can be found where we live and work. Here are some tips to help you protect yourself from EMF exposure.
EMF Exposure in the Office and Computing Area
#1 Laptops and Secondary Devices
Whenever possible, avoid working directly on a laptop computer with a secondary keyboard and mouse to help lessen your exposure (this is especially helpful if you are working on it for extended periods of time). I highly recommend avoiding working with a laptop on your lap, especially when it’s plugged in. Many laptop computers produce strong EMF, especially when plugged into an electrical outlet.
#2 Opt for LCD
When replacing (or updating) your computer monitor or TV, opt for a liquid crystal display (LCD). LCDs emit much less radiation than the old CRT style monitors that use a cathode ray gun to excite the phosphors on the screen.
#3 Move Power Cords
Clean up the electrical power cords and transformers around your computer and desk and reroute them away from your feet and seating area. Transformers and power bars around your feet while you work can be a huge EMF exposure point, especially if you spend a lot of time on your computer.
EMF Exposure and Wireless Technology
#4 WIFI EMF
Avoid installing a wireless network (wi-fi) in your home. In October of 2007, the German government advised its public to avoid using wi-fi because of the possible health risks they pose. Wireless routers emit electromagnetic radiation even when they aren't in use.
#5 Avoid DECT
When purchasing a cordless phone, try to avoid one that uses DECT technology. In 2005 the German government also banned this type of wireless technology. The base station of these phones constantly transmits a strong radio frequency signal, even when the handset is just sitting idle in the cradle. If you have one, keep it turned off as much as possible. DECT technology is also used in some baby monitors, so be sure to phone the manufacturer prior to purchasing one to see this type of technology was used in its production.
#6 Limit Wireless Phone Use
Limit the time you spend talking on cellular and cordless phones and only let children under 14 use them for short periods of time (when absolutely necessary). Lately, we’ve been hearing about the possible health risks associated with cell phone radiation. It is important to understand that cordless phones use electromagnetic radiation to communicate – just like cell phones – and radiation exposure is cumulative no matter what the source.
Electrical Wiring and Devices
Unplug all electrical power cords and devices that are not in use and limit the use of electrical devices in the bedroom. All devices plugged into live electrical outlets including innocuous lamps and clock radios emit an electric field. However, if an electrical device is unplugged, it will not produce an electric or a magnetic field. EMFs can suppress the function of melatonin, a chemical essential for proper sleep, so it is important to clean up the electrical cords and devices around your bed. One recommendation is to switch your plug-in clock radio for a battery-operated one instead.
EMF Exposure and Lighting
#8 Choose Better Lights
Avoid installing low-voltage (12 volts) halogen, florescent tube, and energy-efficient compact fluorescent lighting (CFL). Virtually all of these energy-efficient technologies can throw a nasty EMF from their ballast or transformer. But that’s not all: they can also create “dirty electricity” (high-frequency radiation that emanates from your home’s wiring). The good news is that cleaner LCD lighting technology is just around the corner so wait for it to develop and come down in price before you do major lighting upgrades.
#9 Avoid Dimmers
Replace all the dimmer switches in your house with regular "on/off" switches. Even when turned completely on to full power, a dimmer chops-off part of the electrical current, then it discards in the form of a strong electromagnetic field – in addition to polluting the rest of your home’s grid with dirty electricity.
#10 Install Graham-Stetzer Filters
The most important thing you can do to avoid ongoing exposure to EMF is to install Graham-Stetzer filters in your home and office to reduce the amount of dirty electricity in your electrical wiring and devices. In a number of recent scientific tests, many subjects’ health and alertness benefitted greatly when the filters were installed in their homes and schools. If you or someone in your family is demonstrating symptoms of “Electrical Hypersensitivity” you may want to consider having your home inspected for dirty electricity and other EMF sources.
We have talked about ways to protect yourself from EMF and there are many ways to do so. You may wish to buy protective items for yourself and your family.
The Independent, Germany warns citizens to avoid using Wi-Fi, September 9, 2007.
German Federal Agency for Radiation Protection, Press Release, DECT – The Radiation
Source at Home: Cordless Phones radiate unnecessarily, January 3, 2006