PEMF therapy completely transformed my physical and mental health – here’s how it can change your life, too
There are lots of things I struggle with in life – not least getting into a pair of tights without ripping one or both of the legs – but there are two particularly relevant to this story: hip pain (related to an injury in my early 20s when I felt too invincible to heed the advice of a physio), and anxiety.
Why are these two key here? Well, unlike the inevitability of laddering my tights before I’ve even stepped out of the door, they are both things that I found PEMF therapy has infinitely helped with – in a relatively short space of time.
Very rarely are we able to solve a problem by lying down (unless your specific issue is that you are overtired) but that’s exactly what I was told to do when I joined a PEMF mat workshop.
I’ve always leaned toward talking therapy – psychosynthesis, EFT, cognitive behavioural therapy and so on – yet, more and more, experts are chipping away at the links between our physical bodies and our mental wellbeing. And I’m not just talking about eating nourishing foods or going on walks, though these are certainly components.
So, why wasn’t I giving my body the same therapy as my brain? The answer was that I didn’t know, but after one session on a PEMF mat (hold tight for the explanation on what on earth that even means), I felt better than I had done in months – possibly even years.
So what is PEMF? PEMF (Pulsed electromagnetic field) therapy sends magnetic energy into the body. These energy waves work with your body’s natural magnetic field to improve healing.
“PEMF Therapy (Pulsed Electromagnetic Field) has been around for over 60 years (some even say since 2000 B.C.),” Lauren Berlingeri, co-founder of HigherDOSE, the celebrity-loved brand behind the PEMF mat I alluded to at the beginning of this article. “It is a biohacking and rehabilitation treatment that helps regenerate damaged or injured cells throughout the body. Basically, it just helps give your body what it needs to heal properly. PEMF relies on pulsed energetic currents that run through the body to promote natural healing over time.”
The currents are delivered in low frequency bursts – and different wavelengths have different effects. For example, with my own infrared PEMF mat, the first two settings are more relaxing and help you fall asleep, whereas the higher two are better for energy and getting focused. So, depending on the time of day, or your intention for using it, you simply change it.
Just a few years ago, PEMF was only available to those who could afford to shell out thousands and attend weekly sessions at a clinic, and it all needed to be under the supervision of a medical professional. Now though, just as we’ve all adapted to a life at home, so too has PEMF therapy evolved into a more accessible treatment that can now be enjoyed within your own four walls.
“PEMF therapy is typically performed by lying down on a special mat that has a copper coil or an electromagnet. This allows a pulsating magnetic field to go through your body on a deeper level with more targeted control for a longer period of time,” Lauren explains.
It sounds intimidating, but actually PEMF frequencies are not unlike what you’d already be experiencing in nature, which means your DNA and cells don’t get negatively affected, she assures me.
I’ve now been using a PEMF mat for two months – a relatively short time when it comes to talking therapy but, as it turns out, enough time for physical therapy to totally transform my life. Here’s how…
After my first workshop, I began to carve out time each morning to simply ‘lie down’, a pretty unusual daily task. Sometimes I just lie down on it, experimenting with different positions, sometimes I carry out a yoga sequence on it and sometimes I sit cross-legged and go through a meditation or breathwork exercise, but you can use it any way you like – as long as you’re on it, you’re benefiting from it.
Extraordinarily quickly I noticed that I didn’t have my hip pain any more – whereas before it would begin to ache after walking for a short period of time or feel stiff in the morning, it’s rare I feel so much as a twinge from it now, whether I’m doing high or low-impact exercise.
I am able to meditate more effectively. I’ve always liked the idea of stillness (and, let’s face it, needed some more of it in my life) but up until now had struggled to really achieve it. The PEMF mat encouraged me to feel more grounded in a way that felt effortless and seemed to help me clear my mind more efficiently than any mindfulness I’d done before.
Rather than dreading the idea of stillness, I now relish it. Time on my PEMF mat feels sacred – and you don’t need to be spiritual to feel it. My mum – who once proclaimed that she would rather walk over hot coals than listen to someone talk about spirituality (the irony was not lost on me) – tried it a few weeks ago after some heavy persuasion from me, and said she too felt more peaceful, more able to clear her mind.
Which leads me on to the most profound way that PEMF has impacted me: I feel less anxiety.
Perhaps it’s to do with a clearer mind, perhaps it’s to do with the grounding impact of a daily practice and routine, or perhaps it is to do with the magnetic therapy helping to calm my parasympathetic nervous system (also referred to as the ‘rest and digest’ system as it functions to conserves the body’s natural activity, and relaxes us once a perceived emergency has passed).
Whatever it is though, I feel more stable, more in control and less governed by my anxious instinct that my day-to-day life poses some sort of immense danger to me (although I know instinctively that moving between the sofa and my fridge is unlikely to pose any real threat – except the threat of an empty fridge).
I am more able to focus on tasks during a day that proceeds a morning moment on the mat, able to cling onto that sense of calm, rather than getting caught up in thought spirals that lead to heightened angst.
And I am not a miracle case. As Lauren Berlingeri tells me, “There are so many benefits!”
“Frayed cells lead to a frayed mind, meaning worse sleep and poor focus. Bad sleep leads to a messy day, which leads to more stress, which turns your central nervous system into overdrive, which leads to worse sleep that night. This nasty cycle feels terrible and creates a lot of internal and external ageing.
“In order to get a proper night’s rest, your body needs to produce the proper amount of melatonin and Human Growth Hormone (HGH). PEMF therapy helps release both hormones, leading to deeper sleep and a better opportunity for your body to do the hard work of healing while your mind takes a break.
“You know how some people say, ‘You’ve got good energy,’ or ‘Good vibes only?’ Well, that’s because our cells literally have their own voltage. A healthy cell is vibrating at around -20/-25 millivolts, but when we get sick, we end up with cells operating at a lower capacity, making the body ill-equipped to heal.
“PEMF sends a mild electrical magnetic current through the body increasing blood flow to the cells and tissues, helping to inhibit pain and inflammation. With inflammation stalled, your cells have a chance to pick up their own pieces and join forces, leaving you with more energy and better healing resources.”
Lauren adds, “PEMF is great for muscle recovery too. Getting those gains at the gym can be short lived if you’re not engaging in proper recovery. PEMF can help the muscles rebound much quicker by increasing the oxygen delivered to the muscles, improving endurance and preventing injuries caused by overuse. If you’re injured, PEMF can accelerate healing with tendons, ligaments, bones, and tissue.”
Pretty unbelievable, right?
Wellness practitioners, meditation facilitators and yoga experts are also starting to incorporate PEMF therapy into their work with clients. Aysha Bell, for example, a meditation, yoga and reiki coach, has noticed that working with a PEMF mat has helped her clients to “go deeper, faster”.
“I have started offering my sessions with the PEMT mat, bringing together transformational guided meditation with PEMF therapy and sound therapy, has been a game changer, my clients report that they feel even more supported, grounded and connected.”
In fact, she predicts that PEMF therapy is about to take off in a major way.
“I believe PEMF sessions with sound will be the next wellness revolution. Just like my mission to get meditation into the homes of many, I would like to see people being able to keep the benefits of the PEMF at home or have sessions in the studio weekly offering Sound and PEMF sessions.”
Interested in trying it out for yourself? I’ve picked out several top-rated products that will help you reap all the benefits from the comfort of your own home. They’re not the cheapest, but if we’re talking cost-per-wear, they’re likely to become the most economical item you own.
Welcome to the club, we’re all pretty chilled here.