Magnets: Not Just for Your Refrigerator
Alternative health therapies have become popular in recent years because people are seeking non-intrusive and safer forms of treatment for pain and illnesses. Among new ideas that are being studied for effectiveness is the use of magnets for relief from the pain of various forms of arthritis and other painful illnesses. Although study results about their effectiveness are varied, some people believe strongly in the use of magnetic therapy. This option should be explored and considered if you too suffer from arthritis.
It is believed that magnets, when held against the skin, relax blood vessels, allowing more blood to flow to painful areas and, in consequence, stop the pain faster and more thoroughly. It is also said that the magnetic field prevents muscle spasms and interferes with the nerves reaction to pain. Skeptics do not believe that muscles prevent or cure pain, but that the effect is simply that of a placebo—you think that you are being cured so you mentally believe that it is true. Mind over matter is the phrase associated by skeptics speaking about many alternative medical treatments.
Magnets may work for you, but there is no telling until you try. You can purchase magnets in a variety of shapes and sizes, but most therapists and companies that promote their use suggest magnetic jewelry, belts, and straps that can be worn on the body at the inflicted area. Prices range from at little as five dollars to as expensive as several thousand, depending on size and number of magnets and quality of workmanship on the product. Choose a magnetic that is fairly strong. Magnetism is measured in gausses, with a typical refrigerator magnet being at about 100 gauss, and this strength is too weak to penetrate the skin. 450 gauss is the lowest strength that should be used for medicinal purposes, and magnets advance in strength as they get pricier. Stronger magnets, however, will work better, so you get what you pay for in most cases.
Magnets used for health can either be placed directly over the point of the pain or over the acupuncture point associated with the pain. A professional can help you determine placement. Arthritis is the most common affliction healed with magnetics, but they can also be used for back pain, headache, tennis elbow, and foot pain, as well as a number of other aches and pains. Your doctor can give you more information on their use if you decide magnetic therapy is right for you.
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