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Magnetic Therapy White Paper


No one is exactly sure how or when magnetic therapy was first discovered. Many experts believe that is was over 3,000 years ago when the Greeks and Egyptians noticed that they felt better when laying down on loadstones (magnetic rocks). Other scientists thought magnetic therapy came about 4,000 years ago from Hindu scriptures using magnetic rocks for treatment of various diseases. It was said that Cleopatra was known for wearing magnetic bracelets and necklaces for healing. Aristotle wrote about magnetic rocks being used for therapeutic treatment of various conditions.

Today, magnetic therapy is very advanced in Asian countries like Japan and China, as well as European areas like France and Germany. Most recently, there is a growing interest coming from the United States, England, Holland and other European countries.

Magnetic therapy is beneficial for many uses. Often it is used in treating diseases such as cancer, rheumatoid and insomnia. Most of the time magnetic therapy is used for therapeutic purposes to help relieve pain, reduce inflammation and swelling, and help conditions such as arthritis, poor blood circulation, and joint, muscle or bone injuries.

Strength and Gauss Rating

The strength of a magnet is determined by how much iron weight it can lift and is measured in gauss units. The gauss (also known as Br or manufacturers rating) of a magnet alone is not the actual strength of a magnet. Many companies falsely describe their product by listing the Br gauss rating as the strength of its magnet. A magnet's actual strength is determined by the strength of the magnetic material (gauss rating), the size (volume) of the magnet and the distance the magnet is from the surface it is placed under. The surface gauss rating is the number or strength that is actually being emitted from the surface of the magnet and is penetrated into the body. You should always check the surface gauss rating to receive the magnets proper strength value. Some experts use a simple formula to determine the surface gauss rating. The formula divides the gauss rating number by 3.9 to get an approximate surface gauss rating. (EX: 3950 gauss rating/ 3.9 = 1013).

Different Types of Magnets

Below is a chart of the different types of magnets and their different gauss ratings:

Magnet Type Br Gauss Rating Surface Gauss Rating
Flexible 2,450 300-500
Iron 8,000 500-800
Ceramic 5 Button 2,300-3,950 600-1,200
Rare Earth
8,700-12,500 1,200-4,000

Flexible magnets are very low cost and easy to use. They come in sheets and are thin enough to cut with scissors. They usually have an adhesive backing for easy application and use. Flexible magnets are typically used for crafts, toys, displays and visual aids. They are easily demagnetized compared to the more durable magnets.

The iron magnets are almost never used in products for therapeutic purposes because of their low strength and ratings. Their intensity has almost no beneficial value to the body at all.

Ceramic magnets are the most effective magnets for use in therapeutic products. They have a strong surface gauss rating that provides deep penetration and excellent results and are highly resistant to demagnetization.

The rare earth or Neodymium magnets are the strongest magnets available today. They are extremely resistant to demagnetization, but have to be protected against rust. They are susceptible to rust in humid conditions and can be dangerous in extremely hot temperatures. Rare earth magnets should not be used with any heated devices.

The Difference Between the Poles

There exist major concerns about the improper use of the south (positive) pole, the north (negative) pole and bipolar uses of magnetic therapy. The positive magnetic field is a hyperactive field that increases stress at the cellular metabolic level and induces anaerobic bacterial growth also the south pole of the magnet can decrease cellular oxygen, stimulate wakefulness, increase inflammation, swelling and pain, intensify symptoms and encourage fatty deposits.

The north (negative) pole is used for medical treatments worldwide and is known to be highly effective. The negative magnetic field can increase cellular oxygen, encourage restful sleep, reduce inflammation, swelling and pain, reduce fatty deposits and do the reverse effects of all other positive field applications. It also slows down and arrests cancer cell growth. The negative field of the magnet, when used properly, amplifies energy flow and reduces pain quickly. In many cases, surgery has been able to be cancelled completely due to its applications.


  1. Magnetic therapy should never be used under the following conditions:
  2. Never use magnets if you have a pacemaker or other such devices.
  3. Magnets should not be used on the abdomen during pregnancy.
  4. Magnets should not be used if there is any bleeding externally or internally (magnets promote blood flow).
  5. Magnets should only be used externally.

Don't forget that magnets will affect all electrical equipment including hearing implants and hearing aids. They may also affect other magnetic material such as data-storage magnetic media such as disks and tapes as well as the magnetic strips on credit cards and other such objects.

These are scientific factors that should be considered when using magnetic therapy products. This report was not written to promote Magna-Mat® or its products. It is simply an informative paper to give all people interested in magnetic therapy a complete overview of what types of magnets exist, how to determine their actual strengths, how to use the different types of poles and what effects are possible from using magnetic therapy. A knowledgeable customer is a better one.