Electromagnetic Fields and Paranormal Claims
If you are a regular viewer of the many paranormal reality shows, you probably have a firm understanding of what EMF is and the impacts associated with it. This article is meant to deepen the discussion and hopefully will give you a better understanding of it. We will also deviate a bit from what others may say regarding their implications within an investigation based on our experience in the field.
What is an "EMF"?
EMF stands for electromagnetic field. An electromagnetic field is one that contains both magnetic and electrical properties that surrounds objects with an electrical charge.
It is naturally occurring as the movement of electrons within the Earth creates a field that surrounds the planet. This is why a compass works as it does.
An EMF is also a man-made phenomenon as every electrical device emits some level of an electromagnetic field. This field is created when energy runs through a circuit and electrons pass through a conductor.
Common Sources of Household EMFs
As mentioned above, any powered item will create its own electromagnetic field. The strongest fields usually occur when a building's electrical system is faulty or when an electrical appliance has an issue or defect. The worst offenders include computer monitors, televisions, cordless telephones, and hair dryers.
Unfortunately the devices with the highest normal level of EMFs are the ones that are used closest to us.
Impacts to Health as a Result of High EMFs
The US EPA safety guidelines state that EMF exposure should be limited to less than 1mG (milliGauss). A gauss is a unit of measure of a magnetic field.
Short-term and moderate impacts due to moderate to heavy levels of EMF include the following:
Skin rashes, itching, burning or tingling sensation
Forgetfulness, confusion or poor concentration
Feelings of tightening of the chest
Panic attacks or anxiety
Ringing in the ears
Shortness of breath
Long-term exposure to moderate to high levels of EMFs are thought to cause leukemia, birth defects or miscarriage, brain tumors and other forms of cancer.
Paranoia and Hallucinations
When most paranormal investigators begin an investigation, they usually obtain baseline readings of the electromagnetic field. When high readings are detected and a source is identified, many chalk up any claim to paranoia and hallucinations caused by high electromagnetic fields. It is our job to look for alternative answers first then look to dispel those answers and attempt to gather evidence to say whether a location is haunted.
Our group works under this principle. Where we differ is some groups will automatically claim a location is not haunted due to the fact that the client has been exposed to high EMFs. I cannot state this following statement strong enough - No one can positively prove that a location does not contain residual energy or an intelligent entity.
In our experience we have picked up some amazing personal experiences and evidence in locations where others would have left and claimed that high EMFs were the basis of any and all claims. I admit a good deal can be the result of hallucination and paranoia, but there is also many times where something paranormal truly is happening.
It is our job to find evidence stating whatever conclusion we make,- we cannot write off claims automatically. Our approach must be scientific; we look to prove our theories right or wrong.
High EMFs cannot turn on devices, nor open and shut doors or move objects.
It seems that many bedrooms are ripe for high EMF exposure. It is said that electric blankets release strong EMFs if plugged in an outlet - even off. Add the fact that many have an alarm clock at arm's length and it makes for a potential health risk. Alarm clocks are also notorious offenders. So a person for eight hours is covered by an EMF generator with an alarm by their heads pumping out more EMFs and can cause havoc.
Now add a medical condition such as sleep apnea and some interesting claims are made. If you are not aware, sleep apnea victims can generate vivid claims because their bodies are paralyzed (body's self-protection during REM) and semi-conscious where dream and reality are blurred a bit. The trouble breathing, the body's paralysis, and haze between dream and reality can make someone feel they are being held down or attacked by a spirit or demon.
We recommend moving electrical appliances about six feet from the bed in order to lessen impacts. A full night's sleep is a long time to be subjected to high levels of EMFs without the ability to walk away from the source.
Ways to Mitigate Man-Made EMF’s
We are not electricians, so they would be the best source in solving any household EMF’s related to electrical systems and faulty wiring. A bit of a warning – electricians as you can imagine, can be quite expensive – we are not recommending any courses of actions, that choice is yours to make.
Some ways electricians may recommend lowering EMF’s include:
Replace faulty wiring
Replace existing wiring with armored cable
Properly ground offending electrical systems
Make sure plumbing does not carry EMF
Provide magnetic shielding for high EMF sources such as electrical service panels or other normally operating high EMF sources.
Only a licensed professional should attempt any resolution to high EMF fields in a property.
Paranormal Entities and EMFs
Up until this point I have been talking about electronics being the source of electromagnetic fields. Another source is ghosts and spirits. The presence of a residual energy or a spirit causes a change from the baseline EMF. This is why our EMF meters are a valuable tool during an investigation as it provides measurable data that can back-up other evidence.
For example, if our meter detects a drop in temperature, a spike in the electromagnetic field, and we were able to record a voice or footsteps at that moment, we will have in my opinion some substantial information. It is difficult to debunk three pieces of corresponding data.
The presence of a ghost or spirit can often be detected through a feeling of a slight or heavy electrical charge in the air. If you are a little sensitive, these charges can be felt quite easily. I have had great success just walking a location without meters and noticing areas of enhanced static feeling. I make note of the locations and concentrate evidence gathering at those locations.
Also keep in mind the health effects of short-term high EMF exposure. We typically see 2 - 7mG readings when an entity is present. Normal households will average 0.2 - 0.7mG. EPA suggests exposure limited to less than 1mG. Some people in haunted locations can get quite ill having moderate to heavy symptoms including headaches, nausea, and fatigue - all symptoms associated with moderate to high EMF exposure. Sometimes these conditions can be exasperated if the entity has been sapping one's energy in order for it to obtain energy. Again, by gathering data about the baseline EMF levels and ruling out other causes such as mold, we can associate brief slight to severe effects with the paranormal. These symptoms are common enough when dealing with a stronger entity, and it occurs outdoors or in locations without power so we can assume that entities can cause some temporary issues because of their strong electromagnetic field.
Potential Energy Source?
We all know that ghosts and spirits are a form of energy. A residual is energy that has been somehow been trapped and recorded and plays itself over and over for a period of weeks to centuries or longer. Energy with intelligence is a spirit or soul. It is important to remember that according to the Law of Conservation of Energy that "energy in an isolated system remains constant; it can neither be created nor destroyed; it can only be transformed from one state to another." When the human body dies, the energy will not die but transform into a different state.
We generally see a spike in the intensity of paranormal events during times where the Earth's geomagnetic fields have fluctuated (new moon, full moon) and other events such as solar flares and electrical storms. Why the spike? Since ghosts and spirits are a form of energy they need energy to manifest and an increase in energy available to them equals greater activity.
So this is where we may differ from some groups - if paranormal entities benefit from an increase in what I call "natural" EMF, then why can't they harness artificial or man-made sources? Who can say that a location with high electromagnetic field can't be a perfect storm of increased activity? We are surrounded by so many spirits and so much residual energy that we do not even notice. Most of the activity is extremely subtle that it makes sense that in locations with high artificial EMFs activity is more noticeable.
How FPS Treats High EMFs
While we agree with the medical establishment that high levels of electromagnetic fields can cause paranoia and in some cases hallucinations, we feel as if it would be a disservice to rule out any claim simply because a location has high EMF levels. We owe it to our clients and ourselves to fully investigate in order to get to the bottom of claims.
We will continue to gather evidence in order to support our theory that artificially high EMFs can actually intensify paranormal entities to the level that the feeling of being watched is warranted and claims are legitimate.