A growing number of people are claiming sensitivity to Wifi and other electronic devices that we all use on a daily basis. Over 3 million people, in fact. They are experiencing symptoms ranging from migraines, fatigue and nausea to breathing difficulties, cancer and autoimmune disorders, and believe that the low-levels of radiation emitted from Wifi, microwaves, television screens and even light bulbs, are the culprit. This led us to ask the question: Is wifi causing chronic pain?
The condition is called electromagnetic hypersensitivity intolerance syndrome, or EHS. It’s a controversial subject, and opposing sides have strong opinions. EHS made the news recently when parents blamed Wifi signals in schools for a variety of health issues that their children were experiencing, such as nosebleeds, headaches, dizziness, chest pains and nausea.
One woman’s story: living with EHS
63-year-old Mary Coales has experienced horrible mouth pain, and is certain that radiation caused by Wifi and mobile phone signals, is at fault. However, the Cambridge graduate was skeptical at first.
“Before I developed EHS in 2012, I wouldn’t have believed the condition existed,” she said. “The idea of becoming ill because of the technology I’d used for years without previously having any problems is surreal.”
“But the pain I’ve suffered is very real,” she adds. “At its worst, it has felt like I’m being tasered inside my mouth.”
Today, Mary has completely changed her life and daily routine to avoid radiation. She doesn’t go to movie theaters, restaurants, airports and parks, to name a few of her off-limits spots. Even leaving the house can cause an extreme pain in her mouth. When she does leave the house, she wears a shirt made from a special gauzy silver and polymide material, called Aaronia Shield, designed to block radiation.
EHS is not recognized as a medical condition in the United States or Britain, and health agencies claim that there is no scientific evidence that links health issues with electrical equipment.
Dr. Andrew Tresidder, a general practitioner in Britain, disagrees. “Electrosensitivity is a very real illness,” he says. “We don’t really know exactly how it happens, but, given how sensitive the cells in our bodies are to other types of energy waves, such as sound or light, it would be surprising if we weren’t sensitive to other kinds of frequency – such as radio waves.”
The case against EHS
David Gorski, M.D., surgical oncologist at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, believes that EHS is a psychosomatic condition, meaning it’s a condition that is caused by psychological factors, such as internal conflict or stress. In other words, radiation from Wifi isn’t causing these problems, and the idea of EHS is in people’s heads. However, he recognizes that this does not mean that people aren’t experiencing symptoms.
“I must point out that just because EHS is psychosomatic does not mean that those suffering from EHS are not actually suffering. They are.” He just doesn’t believe that EHS is to blame, and cites studies that have tested radiation in people claiming to have EHS, and concluded that the low levels of radiation found, if any, is not enough to cause a problem.
However, Dr. Gorski hasn’t completely ruled out the idea that electromagnetic waves can have an effect on us. “The most that I will concede,” he said, “is that I don’t think it’s impossible that this sort of electromagnetic waves can have significant biological effects, but on a strictly physical basis (not to mention based on basic physics and biology) it is incredibly implausible that Wifi and cell phone radiation cause cancer or any other major health effects.”
Dr. Gorski notes that he fears people who think they might have EHS might get taken advantage of by unethical “quack” doctors. If you think you might have EHS, please get more than one opinion from doctors, especially your primary care physician, who is already familiar with your specific health concerns. Unfortunately, with new conditions or unproven treatments, unethical doctors will sometimes take advantage of people, so please vet all doctors thoroughly before moving forward with any kind of new or alternative treatment.
A concerning experiment with wifi radiation
Wifi radiation made the news again a couple of weeks ago, after an experiment conducted by 9th grade girls caught the attention of scientists.
“We all think we have experienced difficulty concentrating in school, if we had slept with the phone next to our head, and sometimes also experienced having difficulty sleeping,” Lea Nielsen, one of the students explained.
They conducted a controlled experiment using cress seeds, with one tray of seeds being exposed to Wifi, and the other not. The seeds that were exposed to Wifi did not grow at all, whereas the seeds in the unexposed room grew significantly.
Seeds from the room that wasn’t exposed to Wifi:
Seeds from the room that was exposed to Wifi:
“It is truly frightening that there is so much affect, so we were very shocked by the result,” Nielsen said. “None of us sleep with the mobile next to the bed anymore. Either the phone is put far away, or it is put in another room. And the computer is always off.”
While evidence remains inconclusive in regard to how Wifi and other electromagnetic waves affect the body, the possibility is there, so taking precautions, such as not sleeping next to your mobile device, are a good idea until further research has been conducted.
Do you feel that you have experienced EHS? Please share your experience in the comments section below.