Electric and magnetic fields (EMFs) are invisible areas of energy, often referred to as radiation , that are associated with the use of electrical power and various forms of natural and man-made lighting. EMFs are typically characterized by wavelength or frequency into one of two radioactive categories:
- Non-ionizing: low-level radiation which is generally perceived as harmless to humans
- Ionizing: high-level radiation which has the potential for cellular and DNA damage
Can EMFs be harmful to my health?During the 1990s, most EMF research focused on extremely low frequency exposures stemming from conventional power sources, such as power lines, electrical substations, or home appliances. While some of these studies showed a possible link between EMF field strength and an increased risk for childhood leukemia , their findings indicated that such an association was weak. Now, in the age of cellular telephones, wireless routers, and portable GPS devices (all known sources of EMF radiation), concerns regarding a possible connection between EMFs and adverse health effects still persists, though current research1 continues to point to the same weak association. Additionally, the few studies that have been conducted on adults show no evidence of a link between EMF exposure and adult cancers, such as leukemia, brain cancer, and breast cancer. Nevertheless, NIEHS recommends continued education on practical ways of reducing exposures to EMFs.
How can I find out if I’m being exposed to EMFs?If you are concerned about EMFs emitted by a power line or substation in your area, you can contact emfTESTS company to schedule an on-site reading or phone consultation.
- Electromagnetic Fields and Cancer – National Cancer Institute
- Extremely Low Frequency Fields – Environmental Health Criteria Monograph No.238 from the World Health Organization (WHO)
- IARC Classifies Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields as Possibly Carcinogenic to Humans – The WHO/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified radiofrequency electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B), based on an increased risk for glioma, a malignant type of brain cancer1, associated with wireless phone use.
- NIEHS Report on Health Effects from Exposure to Power-Line Frequency Electric and Magnetic Fields: Prepared in Response to the 1992 Energy Policy Act (PL 102-486, Section 2118)(751KB) – Prepared in Response to the 1992 Energy Policy Act (PL 102-486, Section 2118)
- Questions and Answers about Biological Effects and Potential Hazards of Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields – Federal Communications Commission Office of Engineering & Technology
- Radiofrequency Background – U.S. Food and Drug Administration
- RadTown – Learn about radiation in your town: where it is and how it’s used. Explore the Burbs, Countryside, Downtown or Waterfront. Just pick and click! From the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
- Workplace Safety and Health Topics: EMF (ELECTRIC AND MAGNETIC FIELDS) – The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)