Electrical hypersensitivity (EHS) is often a combination of up to three factors:

  1. a natural sensitivity, similar to other idiopathic or allergic reactions, which is not common in the general population. There are about 12 million allergy sufferers (according to Allergy UK in September 2007) in Britain and the number is increasing all the time,
  2. sensitisation by some trigger, which could be one or more of a variety of commonly encountered substances.
  3. sensitisation by some incident, which has the capability of damaging the bioelectrochemical communication within the body.

Chronic environmental overload, both physical, chemical and psychosocial, when added to genetic predisposition and chronic or acute illness (e.g. viruses have certainly been implicated in some environmental syndromes) increase a person's susceptibility and contributes to the development of electromagnetic sensitivity symptoms.

Initiation of EHS often comes at a time when people are experiencing an intensive work period, which suggests that the changes in people's systems due to stress may increase the person's sensitivity to environmental factors. Stress sensitive hormones have been found to be elevated in people at work in electromagnetic environments (and in EHS sufferers), but not when they are at leisure.

Problematic Electrical Appliances

  • Computers
  • Computer monitors
  • Laptops
  • WiFi systems
  • Mobile phones
  • Cordless phones
  • Televisions
  • Game consoles
  • Fluorescent lights

Some common initiators associated with the development of electrical hypersensitivity which have been proposed are:

  • Living, or working near overhead power lines, substations, underground cables or electrified railways
  • Working in environments with high EMFs (including photocopiers which also give off ozone)
  • Radar
  • Use of electrical appliances
  • Electric shocks or lightning strikes
  • Dental amalgam fillings
  • Chemical exposures (Paint, pesticides, insecticides, lice & flea treatments, bleaches and cleansers, field and garden sprays, furniture and carpet treatments, wood glue and varnish). Many of these have been found to cause neurological damage, which may then be made worse by EMF exposure.

It makes little difference what the initial provocation is; environmental exposure of the immune system by chemicals inside the home or outside, pesticides, or electromagnetic fields, once a person is exposed to any of these, it seems the likelihood of reacting to all of them increases dramatically.