Electromagneto-therapy is an effective and safe medical treatment, used to counteract and give relief from musculoskeletal disorders of various types. It has an extensive history: research into the interaction of magnetic fields, began many years ago and were observed by Ippocrates and the Egyptians, although the first systematic studies date back to around 1500 years ago. Today its applications include inflammatory, rheumatic, traumatic and chronic pathologies of the musculoskeletal apparatus, nervous system and skin.
In this article, I will be looking in particular at its use in combatting the pain which affects the musculoskeletal system, especially the back, but before addressing this topic, let us focus on the functioning of magneto-therapy, in order to understand how it works and how it is applied.
Magneto-therapy: what it is and why it is effective
Magneto-therapy is based on the use of electro-magnetic waves that interact with tissue cells, to promote their regeneration and deliver a series of benefits, without causing an increase in body temperature. Thus it is a non-invasive and painless treatment, which is practiced using devices which generate impulses of varying frequencies, modulation and duration.
How does magneto-therapy work?
The cells of the human body can generate electro-magnetic fields following mechanical stimulus. In order to understand how this is connected to the therapeutic uses of magneto-therapy, we must first remember that most cells are made of an external membrane, an internal nucleus and cytoplasm. The cellular membrane has a tension due to the difference in potential between the external and internal atmospheres, which corresponds to approximately 70/90 millivolts. A “sick” cell – which has suffered any kind of trauma – has less energy and consequently the membrane will have less tension (around 50 millivolts). This is what happens when there is inflammation in the body.
To return to optimum condition – that in which the cell is healthy and there is no pain – it is necessary to restore the initial level of energy. Magneto-therapy, by using impulses which penetrate the tissues to cell level, acts precisely in this way, assisting and speeding up the physiological healing processes of the cells and “recharging them” with energy.
In this case, we talk of “cellular bio-stimulation”, an action which re-awakens the cell , re-activating the self-healing process of our body.
The benefits of magneto-therapy
The electro-magnetic impulse generated by a magneto-therapy device interacts with the electrical potential of the cell and determines a series of beneficial consequences, which depend on the intensity, the length and type of treatment undergone. The main aim of this treatment is cellular bio-stimulation.
There are many effects produced, among the most significant are:
- Osteogenesis. Magneto-therapy stimulates the activity of osteoblasts, in other words the cells responsible for the generation of bone tissue. In particular, low frequency magneto-therapy is recommended for pathologies affecting the bone tissue (arthrosis or osteoporosis).
- Analgesic effect: the relaxation of the muscle tissue decompresses the adjacent tissues, the pain threshold rises and circulation improves. This is thanks to the reduction in pressure on the arterioles and venules, which stops the inflammatory process.
- Relaxing effect on smooth and striated muscles: it acts on muscle contractions, relaxing the fibres. At the same time it helps to decompress the joints on which the affected muscles act, freeing them from excessive pressure.
Thanks to the positive action it has on the cells in our body, magneto-therapy has numerous uses, including treatment of problems and pathologies such as inflammatory pains and neuralgias, painful joint conditions, painful post-traumatic states, neck pain and headaches.
Depending on the therapeutic application, on the market it is possible to find:
- appliances for low-frequency magneto-therapy, which generate fields between 5-10 and 100-200 Hz, and help the tissues, for example bones, to regenerate;
- appliances for high-frequency magneto-therapy, which produce fields between 18 and 900 MHz, the effects of which are mostly analgesic and anti-inflammatory.
What is the difference between low-frequency and high-frequency magneto-therapy?
High-frequency magneto-therapy is based on the emission of small “bundles” of high-frequency radio waves, between 18 and 900 MHz, but at low intensity. This type of wave is recommended for treating soft tissue pathologies (muscles and tendons).
Low-frequency magneto-therapy on the other hand applies a medium-high intensity magnetic field but at low frequencies (150 MHz). It is particularly recommended for treatment of hard tissues and delays in bone calcification.
Does magneto-therapy have any contra-indications?
Although magneto-therapy is safe and suitable for almost all patients, there are e few categories of people for whom it is not recommended. First of all, let us consider the case of patients with pacemakers or hearing prostheses: in these cases in fact, the electromagnetic impulses may interfere with the correct functioning of the apparatus in question.
It is also advisable to consult your family doctor if you are pregnant or a hemophiliac, or have any serious cardiological or neurological pathologies.
Wellow, the pillow that treats with magneto-therapy
There are many cases where magneto-therapy can be effective in treating common disorders, and this is why many people undergo treatment in specialist centres or in the physiotherapist’s studio. These are often patients who suffer from back pain, in particular in the cervical and lumbo-sacral spine.
However the sessions can be expensive, time consuming and require frequent travelling. Wouldn’t it be better if it were possible to carry out these treatments at home, perhaps while sleeping or doing daily activities like working and driving?
With Wellow pillows this is possible!
Thanks to a miniaturized form of high-frequency pulsed electromagnetic therapy, you can relieve and treat neck pains. The appliance can be connected to the cushions with a simple button and is recharged by connecting to an electricity supply.