Hello and welcome to Pulse magnetics information page which is what I think will be the definitive explanation of what Magnetic Therapy is all about.
The terms used by companies who sell Magnetic Therapy products and the explanation on how it works and what you need and why, so often vary and contradict each other by such a wide margin that for most people who are trying to make choice, it can be very confusing. I hope that the following will be of some help.
For most of us it seems straight forward in that you either wear a product:
a) Directly on the site of pain, injury or discomfort.
b) Indirectly when worn on or near a main artery near the surface of the skin, i.e. a pulse point.
There are hundreds of Magnetic Therapy products out there for every part of the body and for every ailment, so which is going to be best for you?
To make that choice you need information and whilst I know you are reading this on my website you may think I am biased, which may be true, and why not? However, this bias comes from over 20 years of research and manufacturing my own products and through trial and error.
When I exhibit at shows, I have direct face to face customer contact which gives me up to date insight into what you, the customer, are looking for and how you have benefited, not only with my products but with others too. Yes, I would like to think I do have a more balanced view, especially as I too can stock and sell what every other company has to offer. I don’t need to because I make most of my own products and I am constantly changing and fine tuning my designs to suit you, my customer. How smug is that?
To aid you in your choice I have put together a summary magnetism in general and of the most frequently asked questions that I have been asked.
THE EARTHS MAGNETIC FIELD
1. What is it?
2. Solar radiation
3. Magnetic strength
MAGNETIC POLES AND DEFINITION
1. Magnetic Poles
4. Magnetic North
5. Magnetic South
8. Like electric current
9. Polar flip
WHAT IS A MAGNET?
1. Natural magnets
2. Man made magnets
3. Rare Earth
1. Magnetic Factors
4. Surface density
5. Distant density
6. Strength at distance
8. Test for yourself
10. Magnet size
1. Does magnet size matter?
BI-POLAR AND UNI-POLAR
· Surface strength
· Common usage
· Directional flow
· Reverse polarity
· Polarity colour marking
THE EARTHS MAGNETIC FIELD
1.This is generated at the earth’s core where a solid iron core is surrounded by a spinning mass of molten iron. Like a generator (geo-dynamo), this generates an electric current which produces a magnetic field that extends thousands of miles into space.
2.This Magnetic Field creates a protective shield around the earth protecting us from Solar particles and radiation emanating from the Sun.
3.The gauss rating on the earth’s surface averages about 0.5 gauss and is predominately negative throughout the whole surface.
MAGNETIC POLES AND DEFINITION
1.Magnetic poles: These are the points on the earth where the magnetic fields are concentrated and are called Magnetic North and Magnetic South.
2.Geographic north and South are not in the exactly the same place due to the fluctuation and continuous movement of the Magnetic poles but are in the same direction.
Magnetic North Pole is around 500 miles south of the Geographic Pole, somewhere in northern Canada.
Magnetic South Pole is in the Arctic Ocean approx 1,700 miles from the Geographic South Pole
The compass needle that is marked and points to Magnetic North is the South Pole of the magnetic needle, because opposites attract so the needle aligns itself with the earth’s magnetic field with one end pointing North with the other pointing South.
This definition is debatable due to some scholars stating that because the needle is often marked with an “N” and so it must be the north pole of the needle and so pointing to the South Magnetic Pole which is also the geographic North Pole?….. Confusing isn’t it?
3.When a Magnetic Field flows from the surface of a magnet or the earth, the direction is Negative to Positive or North to South the same as an electric current.
Records have shown that there have been several “flips” in magnetic poles throughout history.
Lodestone is a naturally magnetized piece of Magnetite plus other minerals which enables the stone to become Magnetic. As early as the 4th Century A.D Lodestones were known in China to attract iron and much later in the 1st century they went on to developed the first compass. At about the same time in India are the first references in its application in medicine.
Magnetite contains traces of iron ore and is attracted to a magnet but it is not naturally magnetic in its natural state, unlike Lodestone.
MAN MADE MAGNETS
The three most common types of magnets that are used in Magnetic Therapy are Ceramic, Rare Earth and Rubberized.
Rare Earth Magnets are made from either Samarium Cobalt or the most widely used, Neodymium to which iron and cobalt is added and by comparison up to five times stronger than Ceramic or Ferrite. Rare Earth magnets will last up to 100 years with minimum loss of magnetism and carry up to 1000 times its own weight. As with most metals they can and will rust and can be brittle so TLC is still needed.
Ceramic Magnets These need to be large to be effective. They are often used in products where more than one magnet is needed to cover a large area directly onto a pain site such as back wraps or knee supports.
Rubberized Personally I can’t see the point. They are the weakest medium to use as a therapy product. They generate heat which can be uncomfortable and when used in material such as neoprene they can overheat the area and can make things worse, especially when used for animals.
3a. They can cause more problems and increase swelling and possible sweat rash as seen in some equine products.
3b. If the material covering the magnet is too thick, even 1mm then there will be little magnetism left to be of any benefit and all you will feel is heat. They are often used in insoles and wraps and not comfortable or practical to wear especially in bed or 24/7.
ELECTRO-MAGNETS FIELDS (EMF)
Electro-magnetic fields need an external power source to produce a magnetic frequency.
These frequencies can be altered and time controlled depending on what they are used for and are much stronger that Static Magnets.
The equipment that is used for medical purposes are not cheap and those used in hospitals and clinics are not easily transportable. They also need a measure of professional guidance on exposure and frequency of use.
The strength of magnetism depends on the 1. Magnetic Factors such as surface area, thickness and type of magnetic material and is measured in units called “Gauss” or Tesla. For example the magnets in my Pulse and Pulsar range of wristbands are 2000 gauss or 200m Tesla.
2.Gauss is the unit of measurement of a magnetic field which is also known as the “magnetic flux density”. One gauss is defined as one Maxwell per square centimeter which simply put is how many magnetic field lines per centimeter squared. The larger the surface area and mass of the magnet the greater the flux density and how far the magnetic field projects.
The scale and measurements below are not accurate and only demonstrate the principle.
\ \ \ \ \ \/ / / / / / < 200 gauss (approx)
\ \ \ \ \ \ / / / / / / / < 500 gauss (approx)
1000 gauss (approx)> \ \ \ \ \ \ \ / / / / / / /
---------------- 2000 gauss
15.5 sq mm M A G N E T (Pulse /Pulsar)
As you can see from my attempt at a visual diagram?
4. Surface Density is where the lines of magnetic force are concentrated which give the magnet its magnet forces and strength.
5. Distance Density. The further away from the surface the magnetic field lines become less dense and separate and so the magnetic field becomes weaker.
6. Strength and Distance In fact the overall magnetic strength can be less than half just 3mm from the surface in proportion to the surface area of the magnet and this fact is often omitted by companies who attempt to explain the principle of Magnetic Strength.
If you now reduce the surface area of the magnet to say 4mm Diameter as in some jewellery, you will see from the diagram below, the magnetic field will become shallower and weaker away from the surface, just as with the larger magnet but much sooner due to proportion of surface area, even though it has the same surface gauss rating.
\ \ \ / / / 50 gauss
1mm > \\\/// 500 gauss (not to scale)
--- < 2000 gauss
4mm Dia magnet
Now let us multiply the magnets as in a typical Magnetic Bracelet.
\ \ \ / / / \ \ \ / / / \ \ \ / / / \ \ \/ / / \ \ \/ / / \ \ \/ / /
\\\/// \\\/// \\\/// \\\/// \\\/// \\\///
--- --- --- --- --- ---
4mm Dia magnets
From this 7.Diagram you can see that the magnetic fields are separated by distance to each other.
8. Test for yourself. Two very simple tests to do yourself is by using a new 2p pence piece (I say new because there are still the old copper coins in circulation which won’t work on the following).
Lay the coin on plain copy paper on a flat surface and measure 2 cm away. Place the magnet on its edge so the face is pointing towards the coin and now move the magnet slowly closer and closer until the coin is attracted to the magnet. The coin should slide across the surface to the face of the magnet. E.G My Pulse/Pulsar Wristbands 1cm.
Use 3 x 2p pieces and see how many the magnet can hold end on end on the rim of each coin. My Pulse/Pulsar Wristbands 2 or 3 x 2 pence pieces.
Does the magnet “snatch” the coin from your fingers?
Do more Magnets in a line increase magnetic power? No No No! More magnets in a bracelet with the same gauss rating will only cover more area. Each magnet works in relation to its own surface area, they DO NOT add together. Some companies however, add the total number of magnets and strengths and quote an “overall gauss rating” which is wrong and misleading.
I’m not suggesting that Magnetic Bracelets do not work. I am merely correcting the incorrect assumption that more magnets are stronger than a single larger magnet of the same strength.
10. DOES THE SIZE OF THE MAGNET MATTER?
Oh yes, in the world of magnets size does matter. The larger the surface area the greater the magnetic field will travel, however depth and thickness of the magnet also plays a big part. The magnetic field in the core of the magnet is much denser than on the surface and some companies may quote this “Core Gauss” rating and whilst it is technically correct it is not the same as the surface gauss which is what you will be exposed to. So 2000 surface gauss can be quoted as high 12,000 core gauss.
BI-POLAR OR UNIPOLAR
This is a magnet with both North and South Pole on the same surface. This configuration is strong in its application when the magnet needs to stick to a metal surface as in advertising or craft magnets but not in Magnetic Therapy. Because the two opposite poles are so close together they will naturally attract each others magnetic field which means the magnetic field lines won’t travel very far from the surface. This lack of penetration is not good as a therapy but great for sticking to fridges. The material used is mostly rubberized, which I mention in my MAN MADE MAGNETS section. The same applies to some Magnetic Jewellery where manufacturers sometimes put two or more opposing magnets next to each other which will only lessen the magnetic field projection.
N S N S N S N S N S N …..Not good. Shallow penetration
NORTH ......Best. High penetration
N gap S .....Good. Good coverage and penetration
When a Magnetic Field flows from the surface of a magnet or the earth, the direction is Negative to Positive or North to South the same as an electric current. On a magnet surface there is opposite directional flow around the edge as the magnetic field is attracted to the opposite side of the magnet so you have a magnetic reversal of South flowing around the edge of the north side of the magnet and visa versa on the other side.
Some companies claimed this was a patented and unique configuration of the magnet they used in order to claim enhanced benefits but as we can see it is apparent in all single pole/uni-pole facing magnets.
<<< I >>>
<<< I >>>
S <<< I >>> N
<<< I >>>
<<< I >>>
The North, Negative Pole of a magnet is often marked Blue or White and the South, Positive Pole is marked Black or Red