Mommypotamus note: This EMF protection post is a follow-up to “5 Facts Every Parent Should Know About EMFs.” If you haven’t read that one, you may want to start there and then come back. Okay, let’s jump in!
Maybe I’m wrong, but I think a lot of us . . .
Have probably looked at the world’s problems and thought “Yikes! I hope someone does something about that.”
Smarter people. More well-connected people. People who don’t spend the morning looking for their kids shoes.
It’s not that we don’t care – we absolutely do. It’s that we were introduced to the big problems of the world at at time when there was very little we could do about them. As little kids, we learned to rely on those stronger than us to do something. And while that’s totally appropriate, some of us (like me) came to the mistaken conclusion that our role in the big issues of the world would always be a passive one – that we are too insignificant to make a difference. We become like an elephant bound by a silken cord.
In countries where elephants are used as working animals, they must be trained when they are very young and not yet too powerful. The first thing a trainer does is fasten a heavy manacle and chain to the baby elephant’s leg, securing the other end of the chain to a metal stake driven deep into the ground. When the elephant tries to walk freely about, it cannot move any farther than the end of the chain. Although the animal may try repeatedly to escape, it is held in check by its unyielding restraint.
After a period of time, the baby elephant stops testing the strength of the chain. It remains within the circle’s limited circumference, completely passive. It has become thoroughly convinced that it cannot escape.
At that point the elephant can be used in the field and easily transferred from one location to another without concern. All it takes to hold the animal, despite its enormous strength, is a light rope and thin wooden stake. Because once the baby elephant has been conditioned in this manner, he remains convinced for the rest of his life that what was once true will always be true. (source)
I was this way until Katie was born, but you know what? She wouldn’t stay in my safe(ish), tiny sphere! I didn’t want to change her by teaching her to be afraid of everything, so I decided to work on the world instead. And just like that, the thread snapped. It wasn’t until that moment that I realized how powerful I was – how powerful we all are.
One of my concerns, when I shared the five things every parent should know about EMFs is that it would just overwhelm you, that because it’s not possible to get away from EMFs entirely that it’s not worth trying. But oh, it is.
As Dr. Martin Blank wrote in his book, Overpowered, “While the scale of EMF radiation in our sphere is massive, it also rapidly dissipates with distance from the many different sources, such that a four or six foot spread between you and the EMF source is often enough to significantly reduce your exposure.” (emphasis mine)
In other words, reducing exposure from the EMF sources closest to you will make the most difference. With that in mind, I’ve put together some simple EMF protection solutions to get you started. Everyone is going to prioritize things differently, and that’s okay! Some will want the quickest solutions, some the cheapest. Feel free to mix up the suggestions – skipping some of the easy ones and adding some of the more advanced ones based on your situation.
Step 1: Reduce Exposure From Known Sources
The first step to reducing exposure is to deal with the EMF generating devices we use most often. If you’re anything like me, that’s your laptop and phone. I’ve also included some special protection ideas for special situations like pregnancy, the presence of a smart meter nearby, etc.
A quick note on these recommendations: This is not an exhaustive list. The products below are the ones I found that fit two pieces of criteria:
- Legitimate, independent tests back their claims
- Versatility (rather than recommend a different shield for every model of phone, I focused on products that could be used with most models)
Defender Pad is an FCC certified laptop shield that blocks the full frequency spectrum of EMF radiation, including heat radiation, Radio Frequency (RF) emissions (99.9% effective), and Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) emissions (98.25% effective). I am not aware of any other laptop shield that comes close to their technology.
Now, because I know this is an investment I asked DefenderShield, the maker of Defender Pad, to give you a discount – they said yes! Click here and use coupon code MOMMYPOTAMUS at checkout for 10% off.
Tablet PC and iPad Shields
DefenderShield also makes shields for tablet PC’s and iPads using the same technology. I don’t have a tablet (what??), but if I did I’d definitely get one of these. The discount mentioned above (MOMMYPOTAMUS) can also be used to save 10% at checkout – shipping is always free.
If you’ve ever tried to shop for one of these, you know the claims can be both confusing and difficult to verify. You fall in love with one that blocks nearly all signals, then realize it only blocks from the side of the phone you’re NOT talking on. Another works only while you’re carrying it – not while actually in use. And yet another one only seems to work when you’re standing in a field with a purple unicorn.
Personally, after reading up on as many as I could and calling around, I decided this BlocSock was the best option currently available. Independent testing shows that it reduces specific absorption rate (or SAR, the amount that our bodies absorb) by about 96%. It comes in black and can be used to shield your body both while you’re carrying it and talking on the phone. (As a side note, the site I’ve linked to was recommended by Dr. Martin Blank in Overpowered. It’s not the prettiest site, but it’s one he felt sold quality products.)
I like this case from DefenderShield. It blocks nearly 100% of both RF and ELF radiation and can be used while talking or carrying the phone. They also have cases for pretty much every major smart phone available, so you should be able to find one that meets your needs.
Smart Meter Shield
Several years ago, a man came to install a smart meter on my house. As he explained the process he beamed at me like I had won the lottery, so you can imagine his expression when I quietly said “How can I make sure you never, ever install that thing?”
Smart meter probably deserve their own post, but for now I’ll just say that according to Dr. Martin Blank, “the rollout of smart meters should be prohibited.” He adds that they primarily benefit companies while exposing customers to additional risk. Unfortunately, in many areas opting out is very difficult if not impossible. In those cases, shielding smart meters with setups like this one may be the best option. (Again, the site I’ve linked to was recommended by Dr. Martin Blank in Overpowered. It’s not the prettiest site, but it’s one he considered credible.)
Certain fabrics can also be woven with a conductive silver material that cancels out EMFs by either reflecting or absorbing them. I wish I had known about these Belly Armour bands with the potami – they function just regular bands only they incorporate an EMF shielding fabric. Here’s another style if you want to take a look.
(A note on sizing: According to Belly Armour if you were a size 0-4 you’ll want to get an extra small/small, sizes 6-10 are medium/large, 12-18 is large/extra large, and 20-24 is extra large/extra extra large)
Belly Armour also makes a belly blanket that you can just toss over your tummy when you’re on the computer.
Low-EMF Hair Dryer
One thing I learned when reading Overpowered is that a microwave oven emits roughly 100-500 milligaus in EMFs from four inches away, but a hair dryer can emit anywhere from 40-20,000!
It’s an investment, but if you blow dry your hair often it may be worth investing in a low-EMF hairdryer like this one.
Though it doesn’t directly counteract EMF radiation, some evidence suggests that Earthing may diminish its effect.
Other Ways To Reduce Your EMF Exposure
Switch Cell Phone Carriers
According to Dr. Blank, “Some cell phone voice carrier systems (such as Verizon and Sprint, which use CDMA technology) are much worse than others (such as AT&T and T-Mobile, which use GSM technology), especially when the caller is in motion (such as a moving car or train).”
Other Ideas For Reducing Cell Phone EMFs
- Place calls on speakerphone and set the phone two feet away – use a headset if desired.
- Text instead of calling
- Don’t make calls while in the car – the signal has to bounce off of different towers constantly to stay connected, which increases your EMF exposure.
- Avoid making calls when you only have a few bars – The phone automatically increases it’s signal to try to compensate.
- Turn your phone/tablet to airplane mode when your kids are using it to play games
Tips For Reducing Overall EMF Exposure
Sam B., a reader who was kind enough to email me on this subject, learned some very helpful info while walking through her house with a building biologist. Here are some tips she had to share:
- Turn off and remove all cell phones from your bedroom. It’s one of the best ways to get deeper, more restorative rest. [Mommypotamus note: Here are 17 more sleep tips I’ve found helpful]
- Do not plug in anything near your bed. Even if the lamp/clock/sound machine is off, it is still giving off an electric field around the unit and the cord. The best thing is to shut off the breaker to your bedroom. I’m not kidding. [Mommypotamus note: If turning the breaker off is not an option, try keeping devices to a minimum. Any that must be plugged would ideally be placed away from your bed.]
- Turn off your wifi, forever. You can use ethernet cords around your house that are plugged into your modem and still be on the internets. Turn off the bluetooth and wifi on printers, phones, computers, etc. Use a corded keyboard and mouse. [Mommypotamus note: If turning off Wifi completely is not an option for you, turning it off at night while you sleep is the next best thing. We started out by turning our Wifi off at night, and it made such a difference for us that we ditched Wifi completely.]
- Check your house for smart meters. If you have someone come to your house every month to check your electric and water usage, rest well for now. Smart meters are coming to GRU, but they’re not here yet. If you have a smart meter, the readings can be over 100,000 mW/m2 (remember the threshold for concern is 10). Smart meters are like having a cell tower on the side of your house. Our house does not have one of these, yet. But it’s coming to our neighborhood because there’s an active smart meter data collector on a power pole in front of my house. Nothing hot going on there yet, but the tag says it is active.
- Know that new appliances often have chips in them to send data wirelessly to smart meters. Our 2+ year old craigslist upright freezer has one of these chips and is sending out a signal 24/7. Good thing it’s in the garage.
- CFL bulbs give off a lot of radiation. Readings were as high as 8mG (threshold for concern for this is <0.2). Switch to LEDs or go back to incandescents.
- The closer you are to the source, the stronger the signal will be with any type of radiation, so move away from the sources–even if it is only a few inches.”
Step 2: Check for undetected sources and address them as needed
Once you’ve identified known EMF sources, it’s a good idea to check and see if your home has any “hot spots” due to dirty electricity, the presence of ELF/RF emitting devices nearby or power lines.
If you have an iPhone or Android phone, you can download apps to turn your phone into a gaussmeter, which measures ELF radiation from power lines and other AC devices. (Here are some for iPhones, here’s one for Android phones)
Unfortunately, these gaussmeters will not detect radio frequency/microwave radiation emitted by wifi, cell phones, and other wireless devices. For that you need a power density meter like this Trifield Meter. Daddypotamus and I bought one to evaluate properties when we were looking for our farm – it measures both ELF and radio frequency/microwave radiation.
Tips For Measuring
According to Dr. Martin Blank, author of Overpowered,”You will want to make sure that you take measurements that reflect your daily habits. For example, if you are generally away from your home during the day, daytime measurements of your home may not reflect your actual exposure. It is possible, for example, that there is a nearby business that produces high levels of EMF from its machinery in the day and none at night. Instead, you will want to take measurements at a time that matches your normal schedule.”
He also adds that you should take multiple measurements because “Cell phone companies, for example, can change their transmission frequencies during the day. Similarly, throughout the day, nearby WiFi networks can be turned on and off, and if you live in an apartment, EMF levels can shift frequently, as others in the building use different tools, device and appliances.
What Level Is Safe?
The Institute for Building Biology and Ecology has set the healthy/safe threshold to 10 micro watts/square meter for RF for living spaces and below 5 micro watts/square meter for sleeping spaces.
There are so many possibilities that it would be impossible to cover them all. If you notice something that concerns you, you can call LessEMF and see what they suggest or get in touch with a consultant like Scot at BioHealthy Homes.
Do you have a question about protecting your family from EMFs?
Please share it in the comments below!
Read My Comment Policy
do you have any friends left?? i LOVE your way of thinking but when i started on my ‘healthy quest’ i ended up loosing many many friends…..people didnt want to drink their sodas around me anymore (even though i say NOTHING!) Why when one wants to better their own lives, it makes others feel so bad they want to leave??
I’d like to know the answer to that question, as well 🙂 I’ve also lost friends, although I don’t feel that I ever pressured or guilted anyone. I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t share what I know. It is hard because we want to help others, but I’ve realized that most people can’t handle it and simply end up feeling guilty or resentful.
Haha! Yes I do have friends, but most of them have a holistic perspective as well. I was already on this journey when I became a mom, so naturally I gravitated toward moms who cared about the same things.
There are still times when I say something and people look at me like I have three heads, though 🙂
Thanks for all of the useful info in this article. I had no idea about the companies listed that sold all of the emf blockers. We use these products at home & in my work office. My father in law can’t use his smart phone up to his ear without the emf sticker on his phone, his ear burns if not. Just thought I would pass this along. (The company that has stickers & crystals for blocking emf’s is Energy Tools International. I do have a link if you need one.)
Do you have recommendations for tv devices, providers, or options pertaining to this?
Yes, or they just don’t believe in all of this. But remember smoking??? Most people believed smoking was perfectly fine, until it was too late for some. It’s sad that for people in this country to actually be aware of dangers, they have to hear hear or see some guy on tv doing a propaganda bit. THEN it’s a different story. Like lead, radon, asbestos. It’s so funny how MOST people are like that. It’s as if most can’t think for themselves.
Haha, nice question.
I have gone through some major changes and I learnt pretty fast, that better say nothing at all, unless asked:D Especially when it comes to food. Still got all my friends, yay!
Have you ever heard of the Blushield device? My sister has one and raves about the results she’s seen. The technology is very interesting. Would love to hear your thoughts on it!
Hi. How do you feel About the harmonizing stickers such as EMF harmony?
I’ve always used defender shield phone case but sometimes I’d like to change it up and was considering getting a sticker.
Question on the smart meter … did he install it? It seems as though they are now installing them in my area. Would love to know if you got out of it!
No, he didn’t, but he did say that I couldn’t opt-out forever unless I agreed to pay several hundred extra dollars a year. We eventually moved to our farm which, thankfully, does not have a smart meter. According to our meter reader there are no plans for one, either.
Thanks! I really hope since we live way out in the country that they will not install them anytime soon. If they do, I plan to get that cloth to help protect our family!
The first comment about having any friends left is hilarious. Some people view us as “high maintenance” for wanting to cook our own food instead of take out. 😛
This post is over whelming. I don’t really know what gives off these “emf” things. Maybe I’ll have to look into a meter — sounds expensive!
I cover in more detail what EMFs actually are here 🙂 https://mommypotamus.com/5-facts-every-parent-should-know-about-emfs/
Hi our home within 1000 feet of a water tank. But now there are 14 large anntena placed on the huge water tank
Hi Heather. Thanks for The great article. My question is, do cell phones (and laptops) emit radiation just when in use? I’m specifically wondering if cell phones emit radiation when you are on the phone, or using it to read, surf, etc, or all the time even when in sleep mode? Thank you!
Yes, unfortunately they do.
If they are turned off they do not emit emf’s???
Basically, electromagnetic radiation or EMR is composed of RF (wireless) and EMF (wired). EMF is made up of electric and magnetic fields.
An iPad and an iPhone have several antennas for Bluetooth, Wifi, and cellular which all emit RF microwave radiation (wireless). They are turned off when the device is set to Airplane Mode.
It is more difficult to protect from EMF, the electric and magnetic fields. However, the radiation drops off quite quickly when removed from the source. This is why you don’t want to have a laptop on your lap even when in Airplane Mode as the EMF from the batteries are still emitting radiation.
Smart phones emit radiation until you either:
A. Turn them off.
B. Turn them to airplane mode.
Laptops and tablets are essentially the same, except you can connect them to the internet with an Ethernet cord. This allows you to access the internet without being exposed to wireless radiation.
I have a Fitbit that I wear on my wrist all the time. It only syncs with my account when I pull up the app, so I don’t think it is always transmitting things. However, do I need to be concerned about devices such as these (Bluetooth headsets, fitness trackers connected via Bluetooth, etc.), and if yes, what should I do help with the exposure?
Everyone has their own comfort level, and honestly it’s not practical to completely avoid EMFs because the devices they come from are so useful. Bluetooth does emit EMFs – I would ask the manufacturer if they transmit signals only when transferring info. I might also use a gaussmeter to measure the level of ELF radiation they generate. Based on my findings I’d decide whether to continue using one or not.
P.S. I don’t know of many articles that discuss concerns about EMFs and the Fitbit specifically, but I did a quick Google search and this came up: http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/fitbit-health-concerns/
Fitbits pulses high levels of microwave radiation (Bluetooth) every second. I have measured one. It is true that they sync only once to your phone. However, they pulse a non-stop signal. If you are holding your child or someone’s hand then they too will get the pulsed energy into their body.
Hi! Thank you for the post! during your research did you come across the BioDots? The are supposed to help block emfs. I have one on my router, tablet, phone and a bracelet. Any thoughts?
Though they don’t cancel out EMFs directly, my understanding is that they theoretically work by increasing an individuals own bioresonant field (thus making them less susceptible to EMFs). It sounds plausible to me, but I haven’t seen any independent data to back the claim yet. My goal in this post was to offer the most research-backed solutions, but I don’t think by any means it’s an exhaustive list of what’s effective. 🙂
Stickers do not work. It’s like trying to block the sun (another source of electromagnetic radiation) with a sticker. The best protection is blocking the rays which, like the sun, are everywhere.
We use Earthcalm products. Have you heard of those? That have a full house protection and one that helps with emf in the car too.
I have heard of them – they would fall into the category of earthing products that don’t directly counteract EMFs but may increase our resistance to their effects. 🙂
So nice to see this addressed! This issue does not get enough attention. Have you had any experience with bio-dots/electro-dots, etc?
No personal experience to date 🙂
No friends. Haha. That made me laugh. Thank you for this. I agree it’s totally overwhelming, but let’s not let the overwhelm paralyze us. Progress over perfection. Thanks heather!
Another thing and I haven’t read every word but skimmed … but you might also consider adding info about those Smart Meters that the electric companies have converted over to mostly… b/c they don’t have to come out to each house monthly… but those are VERY strong with EMF’s. A friend of mine’s husband works in a field where he has a strong machine that tests for EMF’s and found that they have levels WAY over recommended! I just called up the electric co and asked if they could replace mine with the old analog and they were happy to. I actually had to ask our landlord first and he was fine with it (b/c I presented research that has come out with the link between smart meters and autism)… he had the entire building converted back to the old ones! This friend also says the ONLY cell phone protection that registers as helping anything is: Memon! We got one for my husband’s cell and really can tell a difference!! It just sticks onto the battery. Just FYI 🙂
Wow, I’m so impressed that your landlord converted the building back!
How can we know if our meter is “smart”?
Hi Emily, here’s a page on identifying them that you may find helpful: http://stopsmartmeters.org/frequently-asked-questions/faq-smart-meter-basics/
Great places to start! One thing we did recently was get rid of our smart phones, that alone decreases exposure because we are not on our basic phones except to call and text. I would love more information on the Q-Links, and about using mobile hotspots. Sounds like I need to invest in this book. Have you read Zapped by Dr. Herberman? If so, which do you think is a better option? Thank you! 🙂
Though there is not independent research (that I know of) to support their use, I think Q-Links may be beneficial.
Regarding hotspots – I do use them on occasion, but in general I try to avoid Wifi as much as possible.
I haven’t read Zapped, but it’s on my list. Overpowered doesn’t offer much more in terms of solutions than I have in this post. It is mostly a very well-presented argument that non-ionizing radiation does in fact have biological effects.
Thank you! I guess I didnt realize that wifi and hotspots were the same thing 😛
What about himalayan rock salt lights? Do those help?
I am not aware of any data that directly addresses their effect on EMFs. I have one that I love, though 🙂
I am really kind of freaking out now. My 10 year old son is in the 5th grade and everyone in his school in the 4th and 5th grade just got iPad minis. They come home with him at night and they are used extensively for schoolwork during the day and homework at night. Additionally it will be coming home with him during the summer. Please recommend a case I can buy for him to reduce his exposure. Like I said, I am kinda freaking out about the level of exposure my boys have had in the last year on their tablets, which I have now switched to airplane mode. This kept me up most of last night, though for the first time ever I unplugged the power trip for the wifi, modem and wireless printer, and also switched off the power strips for the Roku, Apple tv, etc.
Oh duh, I somehow skipped right over your recommended tablet/iPad cases.
I think the shield is a great first step, but if it were me I’d read Dr. Blanks book and decide where to go from there. He is very against the use of Wifi in schools and actually includes a section with information on how to bring up concerns with a school.
There is a way to be able to connect an iPad or tablet to the internet without using RF microwave radiation. Take a look at the video on how this is done. See http://stopocsmartmeters.com/emr-protection.html
However, the EMF from the batteries will still emit magnetic radiation which drops off with distance. Keep the device away from the body.
How can children play games and keep them off thier laps??
Heather, you said that you noticed a difference when you turned off your wifi at night. What did you notice? (anyone else who knows anything about this is welcome to answer too)
We noticed that we woke up feeling more rested. In fact, there were a few times when I forgot and my husband would say to me at breakfast “I feel like I got hit by a truck . . . did you leave the wifi on?” I’d go check the office and the answer was always yes. He could tell such a difference that when we moved he agreed to get rid of it completely.
Things like that make me freak out a little because I live in Manhattan literally surrounded by other people’s wifi and phones (I have no idea where my next door neighbor keeps her phone when she goes to sleep for example – could be right on the other side of my bed) and there is no way whatsoever to stop that. I have come to the conclusion that I just have to try not to stress about it because there is nothing else I can do and stress will only make it worse, but I really hope conclusive evidence comes out soon that makes us all go back to wired cords!
We have made our bedroom and our children’s rooms free of all wired (EMF) and wireless (RF) radiation. There are no big sleep problems over here any longer.
Just a side note: I love your blog very much – but please do not start your posts with abbreviations. Very early in school I learned the important lesson to first write everything in full and only afterwards use the EXPLAINED abbreviation. Please make your blog understandable for all – not only for the US. 🙂 Maybe you did not realize it yet – but you are international 😉 Yeah!!!
This would be so helpful. Thank you!
I usually try to, but in this case I decided to link to my previous article at the top for those who need context 🙂
Good reminders! My huby bough me an air tube headset for my mobile phone last year and it blocks 99% EMFs when I place calls. Another good thing to mention is getting rid of wireless LAN line phones and going back to an old fashioned corded phone and use that instead for calls when you are at home. I am eager to purchase the shield for the Galaxy when it comes out. Could you post an update here when they come out? I’ll keep an eye out, but I didn’t see an option to sign up for an email list at Defender Shield. Thanks!
Goodness my typos! My hubby bought me is what I meant to type. 🙂
As soon as I hear I’ll post an update!
One of the first places I read about shielding from emfs was from Doris J. Rapp, M.D.- 32 Tips That Could Save Your Life. I began suffering with adrenal fatigue after dealing with allergies my whole life. It’s extremely eye opening to realize I’m sensitive to the world around me and empowered to have the knowledge to fight it and heal. Many friends and most family pick on my lifestyle, but I know they are listening! I won’t give up on my desire to better the world and posts like these help me explain things. Thank you!
Did I miss the links to the suggested gaussmeter apps? I couldn’t find a hyperlink near that section.
A gaussmeter measures EMF or electric and magnetic fields from devices that are plugged in or run on batteries. It will not measure RF microwave radiation from any wireless device.
We have always done small safeguards…and I always wanted nothing in my daughters room…but the air purifier (doubles as sound machine) and humidifier has proved essential. :/
Hi – Just curious about how you went about researching the different products and how to tell if a product is actually effective? There is a smart patch available from http://www.safespaceprotection.com that is less expensive. You get two for $29.95. And they’re just a small square that you stick onto your phone or other wireless device. I’m just hesitant to buy it because I’m skeptical about how these things actually work at blocking EMFs.
Any suggestions about how to minimize exposure when a spouse requires the use of a C-PAP machine (for sleep apnea) while sleeping? Though I don’t have an alarm clock plugged in, don’t have my cell phone near the bed, etc, we do still have his machine plugged in, and unfortunately it’s near our heads.
Also, do you have any suggestions for desktop computer users? We do still have wi-fi and I’d like to do something else but am not tech savvy and am overwhelmed with where to begin!
It is not that hard to wire up your home and office. Use Ethernet cables and be sure to turn off the WIFI from both the router as well as your computer. Take a look at our solutions page (no, we don’t sell this stuff). http://stopocsmartmeters.com/emr-protection.html
As far as protecting yourself at night you can call the fella at LessEMF.com and he should be able to help you. 🙂
Does it make sense to use a laptop shield if you still have wifi on in the house or does it negates the purpose?
If you turned off wifi in the house, I guess it means no smartphones either? What about online streaming of TV. We currently use ROKU and it works by using our wifi, would hate to go back to cable. My DH won’t be keen in the idea 🙁
Yes, there is still a benefit to the laptop shield with wifi on. It doesn’t negate wifi, but it blocks RF and ELF radiation from touching your lap. Smartphones use cell towers for their data so they still work in a house with wifi turned off. It is also possible to stream without wifi 🙂
I think in your article where you mention “100,000 mW/m2 (remember the threshold for concern is 10)”, you may have incorrect units related to the “10” as threshold for concern. When the units are abbreviated “mW” that’s “milliWatts” (not “microWatts”). And 10 mw equals 10,000 microWatts. And then looking near the end of your article in “What Level Is Safe?”, there you do use “microWatts” for the 5 and 10. So I’m hoping the first “mW” is a mistake and that you could revise that.
Also, the trifield measuring meter certainly can measure RF (radiofrequency), however, usually it is not very sensitive and will not give anyone a realistic indication of the density of RF in the environment. For sure, for sure, for sure, that trifield meter will not display anywhere near 5 and 10 microWatt/m2 level — possibly it wouldn’t even display a 10,000 microWatt/m2 density! Yes, I realize that the range shown on the face of the trifield meter seems to indicate that the needle would position at the densities at lower numbers, but reality is that it does not. I do use a trifield meter because it does measure the magnetic field component of EMFs very, very well. I realize that you’re also discussing magnetic, electric, and “dirty electricity” fields here, which is great; in my opinion, too many people tend to dwell on the radiofrequency-EMFs whereas all types of these artificial EMFs are body-penetrating and cause biologic reactions inside everyone’s body.
Thank you SO much for this post and the one preceding it! I really appreciated your balanced look at the subject…I’ve found it’s rare to find an article that addresses the seriousness of this issue, but at the same time recognizes that for most people, the answer to get rid of cell phones and move to the middle of nowhere isn’t super applicable! 😛
I hope my question isn’t too late to be answered, but I was wondering more about Wifi. I read your post right after it was published and noticed not much was said about that particularly, but when my husband read it a couple days later, we noticed the list from a reader was added and that addressed Wifi some. You mentioned turning it off at night, and ideally getting rid of it all together. I found your answer to another comment about the difference you noticed when you turned it off at night and was amazed! We currently live in a townhome, attached to and very closely surrounded by other homes. (Not our ideal by any stretch of the imagination, but in an area where good housing is hard to come by, we were thankful we found it to rent for the time being.) From inside our house, we can usually pick up twelve other Wifi signals, quite a few of them full strength. How much of a concern should this be? In this situation, would turning off/getting rid of our Wifi even make a difference? I noticed in one of your replies to a comment that you mentioned avoiding Wifi as much as possible…how exactly do you do that?
Thanks so much for any info, and thanks again for always writing such great blog posts!
Thanks so much for the awesome article, it was really thought-provoking. I never thought to put the iPad on airplane mode when my kids play it, but it totally makes sense!
After reading, I called my utility companies and they said they don’t use smart meters, but the meter has some device on it that sends out a signal to the utility truck as it drives by monthly. They said it only sends a signal when the truck sends a signal to it, once a month. Have you heard of this? Is this safe or is it the same as a smart meter?
Also, another question: is it better to have battery operated electronics (like alarm clock, sound machine, etc) in a bedroom than to have them plugged in?
If the meter has a FCC number on it then it is transmitting. You can also google the model number to find out the specs.
I installed the app but I have no clue what the number means! What’s a good/bad reading?
Do you know if the products marketed by safe space are legitimate? They are supposed to protect your home on a while. They also have pendants you can wear that protect a small space. I think that they are supposed to convert harmful waves into something less harmful. Loved the article, thank you.
there appears to be no link to the list of emf measuring apps for smartphones. thanks!
The EMR or electromagnetic radiation emitted from your cell phone is a possible carcinogen. Wireless microwave radiation is in the same carcinogenic category as lead, DDT and chloroform. The app for the phone may measure EMF from plugged in devices.
Great, detailed info! Do you recommend shields if the laptop is sat in the table vs legs when its being used?
Though the impact of the shield is greatest in situations when the computer is on the lap, I personally use my DefenderPad even if it is on the table.
The DefenderPad may protect from EMF but if the computer is using WiFi or Bluetooth you and those around you are being microwaved with RF wireless signals. WiFi, Bluetooth and the microwave oven all use the same 2.45 Ghz frequency. Of course, the energy from them are from different levels. The only difference is the time it takes to “cook”.
Thank you for the quick reply!!! One more quick question on this…can I use the laptop shield for my tablet too…from the look in the picture it seemed the computer just sat on it. I was hoping I could interchange the 2 devices. My son will be taking 2 homeschool courses online next year and want him as safe as possible (and the rest of us). I wi,be looking into wiring vs WiFi too, thanks!
What about baby monitors? Do they emiy EMFs? I always have mine connected on my night table.
Wireless baby monitors emit extremely high levels of TOXIC RF microwave radiation…especially the video monitors. I have never seen anything measure as high as a wireless baby monitor that was inside a crib. I cried with the mother realizing that this device was next to the child’s head for the past 18 months. I wish I would have take a video of the event but here is a news story that I found online. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j0FoP6-_NQc
The BlocSock looks hideous!! One would think at this day and age that they would have come up with something decent looking! Oy Vey!
I guess it will do until then. LOL!
Very interesting! We live in an area that does not have high speed internet available. So the only option we have is to use our cell phone carrier through a hot spot on our desk top. So we have to turn the hot spot on and let it connect to a signal before we can use the internet. Do you know if it is putting out EMF’s all the time even if we have it off? I guess it would be similar to a cell phone? Any way of blocking EMF’s from a desk top?
Think of a “hot spot” as something that is unhealthy. You may get the internet wirelessly, however, you are also exposing yourself to dangerous non-stop pulsed RF microwave radiation.
This video does a great job at showing (hearing) the radiation pulses. https://youtu.be/ICA19oKPi5I
Research posted by Magda Havas, PhD from University of Trent describes how damaging pulsed RF microwave is to the body. http://www.magdahavas.com/pick-of-the-week-12-why-pulsed-microwave-frequencies-are-more-harmful/
I am so glad to know this, because I am on our laptop a lot (there’s SO much information to know!). I am 4 weeks pregnant and I worry I did damage because before I knew I was holding it on my lap a lot. I have since ordered the shield, and was wondering if getting a blanket or belly band would offer any additional protection or is that a waste of money? Thank you!
What does GRU mean (Smart meters are coming to GRU)
Hi Heather, Thanks so much for this info. I have a question: It seems that your family has decided to keep using smartphones, and to just shield them with appropriate cases to protect from RF radiation. However, others, such a Katie Singer (author of “An Electronic Silent Spring), advocate people who want to avoid RF radiation and EMFs to completely get rid of cell phones all together, because cell towers and antennae are very harmful, too, and the more people who subscribe to these services just means more cell towers that have to go up. I know that everyone has to make their own decisions, but I was hoping you could share why your family decided to keep using smartphones. I follow you guys on Instagram 🙂 (Honestly, Instagram is the one thing I can’t use on a regular computer, so without my smartphone I’d have to give it up.) I’m trying to decide whether to keep my phone and shield it, or get rid of it altogether… If you could share how you reached your decision, I would greatly appreciate it!! Anyone else who has made this decision one way or another is welcome to chime in. Thank you!
It’s a good idea to disclose the business relationship you have with the products you’re recommending. Having the links to shareasale indicates you are getting a portion of the sale, which blurs the lines between editorial and advertisement.
Agreed! There is a link at the top of the post to my affiliate disclosure, which can be found here: https://mommypotamus.com/about/disclosure/
I also discuss in more detail how I choose the products I recommend in my response to Alyson above 🙂
Mommypotamus, could you please verify the information re: GSM vs CDMA cell phones. I had the impression that CDMA was safer than the GSM (I have a GSM iphone 4 and was planning to make a change to something CDMA, based on EMF safety concerns). Here is what I found: http://electromagnetichealth.org/electromagnetic-health-blog/gsm-cdma/ .
I leave my phone in “airport” mode as much as possible (which is the great ) with the WIFI and Bluetoorth off and use the cell phone as little as possible but I like to have one for emergencies . I’m not sure if this is right but I ‘ve heard that “airplane mode” may not mean that the cellular signal is completely off (and I suppose that might be different for different phone).
I would like to get the right facts on the CDMA vs GSM so that I can start shopping for a low “SAR” phone (but hopefully with an awesome camera!).
Thank you for posting on such an important topic!
Following! I’d love to know the same thing!
Regarding salt lamps, most of the ones that plug in, especially those with dimmers, emit HUGE amounts of EMF – the needle on our trifield meter was past the max! I ordered some salt lamps after reading about their benefits. Then I learned about EMF and that my son is EXTREMELY sensitive. At 10 years old, he woke up every morning barely able to walk due to all-over body pain. He was extremely fatigued all the time and never felt truly “well.” After getting the trifield meter and testing everything in the house, we removed almost all the EMF culprits and did some rewiring. After 2 months, he had significantly more energy and almost no pain!
So interesting. Thank you for sharing! I was literally getting them to help and just canceled my order.
What if I leave my phone on silent mode or vibration will EMF Affect me?
Can you elaborate more on turning off the wifi at night “it made such a difference for us” Was it physically speaking or from a mental standpoint?
Do you use bed pads or earthing sheets? Accroding to Kevin Gianni:
“6. Bed pads and others could make you PART of the circuit, not protect you from it.
One of the most shocking things that I learned about EMFs in these two parts is that using some of the grounding bed pads or foot pads could actually make you part of the circuit, not protect you from it.
You can become part of the circuit if there are EMFs above you. The only way to test this is to have a qualified technician come in and use specialized equipment. You can’t do it with a Gauss meter.
Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be investigating this further, because we’ve used these pads in the past and this concerns me a bit. Stay tuned for follow up on this!”
One really great thing you can do (with computers especially) is to place a selenite rod, a lepidolite and a smoky quartz point between you and it (any or all) . Selenite works wonderfully and is SO BEAUTIFUL!!! I have a lepidolite taped onto my phone, as well. And we keep a smoky quartz on our router too. Yay for crystals!
My daughter’s chiropractor sells some type of EMF protector that you plug into an outlet and it is supposed to protect your whole house from EMFs. Do you know anything about this and if they work?
I’m wondering about this as well. Does anyone have any further information or testing results on this form of protection?
You’re probably referring to the Graham Stetzer (another brand is Green Wave, but I don’t know which is better) filters that remove “dirty” electricity from the electrical wires in the house. They plug into outlets to remove the dirty electricity. You need enough filters at various outlets to clean up the whole house – they say 20 filters would be enough for an average house. You need a meter also, because depending on what’s plugged in, you might need two filters on one outlet. I’m actually looking into getting those myself.
Our smart meter is on the outside wall of MY ROOM. And, the wireless router is in my room as well despite the fact that I’m the one in my family who is freaked out by EMF radiation, my phone is always on airplane mode. i can’t really do anything. Unless i wanna move out of my house. But i’m still a kid. My mom won’t let me move the router even though i sob over it she says i’m being irrational.
Hi Heather, your section about switching phone carriers to reduce your exposure… I’ve found conflicting evidence which states, “In a June 2011 interview with LiveScience’s Natalie Walchover, Moskowitz said that these maximum values, which measure radiation absorption rates, are potentially misleading. He said that’s because these values do not reflect the phones’ average radiation outputs. While GSM phones typically operate at half of their maximum radiation outputs, CDMA phones operate at a fraction of their maximum outputs, emitting about 28 times less radiation than GSM phones.” (http://www.livestrong.com/article/490704-health-effects-of-gsm-vs-cdma/)
My elderly mom is recovering from breast cancer and the wifi provider installed the modem for her wifi right next to her bed!! To reduce radiation, we unplug the power cord at night. Do you think that’s the same as “turning off” the wifi?
I have all my kids’ laptops and tablets plugged into a bookshelf so we have a one location charging station.
It’s in the craft/fun room that they are in quite often.
After reading about EMF exposure I’m wondering if that is a bad idea.
What do you think?
If it is a bad idea what do you think is a better way to keep things charged?
Or could I move it to the garage?
Put an earthing mat under it?
Any ideas would be appreciated.
Do you know anything about the small magnet/diode things that you’re supposed to keep in your pocket (or elsewhere on your body) to “absorb” the EMFs you’re exposed to? I’ve had 2 health practitioners try to sell them to me, but I just can’t find any actual information about them. I bought the Defender Shield for my husband’s laptop, and I feel comfortable with that company. But I’d like to know if these little pocket guys are useful, or just a hoax.
My husband would like a metal roof…does anyone have any feedback on if this would amplify the EMFs exist in our home? Thank you for any feedback!
Looking for ideas regarding outlets. My daughters room has a high number of outlets and I can’t get the bed far away. Can you email me and post the answer so I don’t miss it? Thanks
Has anyone come across a EMF free headset for toddlers. We travel quite a bit long distances (10-12 hours flights) and would love to find a comfortable headset for our 18 month old. We currently have the EMF free airtubes for ourselves but that would not work for a little one.
Mommy(andDaddy)potamus, My wife has enjoyed (and thus I’ve enjoyed) much of your thoughts and information since you’ve come on line. Thank you. In relation to protection against or reduction of EMF’s, “Stetzerizer Filters” were not mentioned. After researching a great deal, I found that many fellow ‘researchers’ abide by such filters as one of the sure bets while other protection gadgets or stickers seem to claim much but deliver questioningly. One of the catchier brands (I’m not paid to say this; they just have a good marketeer) is GreenWave Filters. They and others like them connect directly to outlets to combat the frequency fluctuations that define ‘dirty electricity’. It might be worth your time to check this type of filter out and add the info in your next post or update. Blessings and all the best to you and yours!
Hi. Thanks for the great article! Have you heard of Gia Wellness? A friend introduced me to them about a year ago. They have harmonizers that protect against EMF. I’d like to know your opinion on their products!
I’m not familiar with them.
If I unplug my baby monitor when I don’t need to see the screen, will that keep the camera from transmitting EMFs?
wondering if there is statistics showing how much the emf emission of 4G mobile phones are down if you just switch off the data/wifi/bluetooth signals, but leaving the phone signals on – is the level of emission down 50%? 80%? 95%? or more? obviously if the drop is not big I have to consider forwarding calls to land line and then putting phone on aeroplane mode?
Christine, I could physically feel the difference each morning dependent on whether we remembered to turn off the router. So we committed to turning it off every night. A year or so later we switched to ethernet connections for our internet, so turning WiFi off and on is no longer an issue.
I’m not sure how long you’re accepting comments . . . My husband works around wireless routers for a living. I realize that it’s not as bad as women of yesteryear who sent their husbands off to the coal mines every morning, but I still worry. Are there any mitigating steps to take when continually exposed to EMFs in the workplace?
I am having WiFi placement issues. Right not it is not an option to turn off forever but I’m hoping our house will be able to at some point. It’s off every night. Our WiFi router (or whatever it’s called) used to be in a guest room which is now a nursery. We moved it downstairs into a closet. We also started homeschooling last year and I feel like it’s always near us since we are home a lot and the closet is kind of centrally located. We spend the least amount of time in the master bedroom and I’m wondering if I should move it in there since we turn it off every night? Thoughts? We have this cloth emf blocker around the WiFi. Not sure if it works. My kids don’t use tablets or phones or computers. We opted out of smart meter service. So we are good from those sources. I’m not sure if you wrote what the safe distances from WiFi are so I need to go back and look. I would have put it in the garage but my sons bedroom is directly above. I’ve also started placing houseplants (snake plants) around the house. I was told those absorb emf. I just cringe everyday my kids sit to play as it’s often near the closet. It’s just the way our home is set up. Would you move it?