I used to have problems going to sleep, so I spent many years researching the best and healthiest ways to fall and stay asleep. This introduced me to the idea of earthing. From there, I discovered earthing mats and their wild popularity. Naturally, I was intrigued.
If, like myself, you are interested in earthing pads, read on.
How Does an Earthing Mat Work?
Earthing mats or pads work by giving your body a direct connection to the earth via the electrical system in your house.
Earthing mats have conductive wires woven into them such that when they come into contact with your skin they allow your body to discharge positive ions into the mat and then through the cord and into the grounding wire of your outlet.
This is exactly what all your electronic devices use the grounding wire for as well, and the ground opening (the round one in the US) should be in contact with the ground outside if your electrical system is properly constructed. (Use an outlet tester to ensure that’s the case.)
What is Earthing?
For centuries, humans had direct contact with the earth by walking barefoot outside. The novelty of your bare feet touching the ground has dramatically increased in the modern era. Very few people today ever feel the earth directly beneath their feet or let it touch their skin directly.
Even though many don’t like walking barefoot, a lot of research has been done to support the healing properties and overall benefits of your bare feet touching the earth. The practice of touching the ground directly can be called earthing or grounding.
Earthing is simply when you walk barefoot on the ground or let it touch your skin directly. Though this practice sounds a bit New Age-y, research suggests that touching the earth has an impact on your body.
The Earthing Hypothesis
The earth has a negative charge. I know that you are going to hate me for this, but you need to think back to high school science class. A negative charge is caused when there are excessive electrons. Electrons do not like to be single, so they attract other molecules to be complete.
This is where it gets interesting. When we touch our skin directly to the ground, our body absorbs the earth’s electrons to neutralize our own charge. As more electrons are brought into our body, they neutralize the effects of free radicals.
You might be wondering, “Why doesn’t this happen when I walk with shoes on?” The reason for this is that most wear rubber-soled shoes. This neutralizing effect does not happen when we walk with shoes since rubber prevents the intake of electrons.
What Is the Scientific Proof that Earthing Works?
The idea of using the energy of the earth to balance the charge of our own bodies definitely sounds far fetched, but it is not. There has been a lot of research done on the topic that proves time and time again that earthing is a scientific process that is beneficial for a person.
The Journal of Environmental and Public Health, the Journal of Inflammation Research, and the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine are just a few scholarly and peer-reviewed sources that have published and supported the effectiveness of grounding.
Health Benefits of Earthing
Since the idea of earthing is a relatively new topic within the scientific field, grounding is under-researched. Nevertheless, recent studies have specifically looked at the connection between using earthing products and inflammation, muscle damage, cardiovascular disease, mood, and chronic pain. It has many benefits for the human body.
One of the biggest benefits of grounding is increased and better sleep. This is because grounding has been shown to relax and improve mood. When this happens, you can sleep more easily. These results also help with stress, depression, and fatigue.
Another major benefit of earthing is its impact on inflammation. Some studies have been conducted that show that grounding helps reduce chronic and non-chronic inflammation. As a result, earthing can also decrease pain and benefit those with chronic disease.
Similarly, grounding can help with post-exercise muscle damage. In this research, it found that grounding after exercise affected the creatine kinase, white blood cell count, and pain. This made it easier for the athlete to recover faster.
Some more recent studies have also shown that earthing can affect cardiovascular diseases as well. This includes red blood cell fluidity, blood flow, and clumping. This specific benefit needs to be researched more.
Here is a complete list of the possible benefits of using an earthing product:
- Improved sleep
- Improves immune response
- Decreases inflammation
- Relieves stress and depression
- Enhances healing
- Improves cardiovascular function
What are the Side Effects of Earthing?
Those with electrosensitivity should be careful when earthing. When you live in rural areas, the electrons are wildly helpful for your body and do not normally affect those with electrosensitivity.
In more electrically polluted areas, however, getting grounded can be difficult due to the increase of the electromagnetic field. If you live in an area with more reliance on these fields, grounding can potentially make your situation worse. This won’t be an issue for most users.
Consult your doctor for further information if you’re still concerned.
What Is an Earthing Mat Made of?
Earthing mats/pads are normally made with some sort of resin and foam. Inside the mat are silver wires that make it conductive. Since electricity chooses the path of least resistance, silver is the perfect material for this.
Silver is a great conductive material that is safe use and durable. Without these wirings, your mat would be, well, just like any other mat.
The silver wires will get connectivity through a cord that will be attached to the mat. Often, these cords can be removed so that you can wash them and store it more safely. You will simply plug one end of the cord into the mat and the round into a three-prong outlet.
Homes or wiring systems built before the 1960s may not be suitable for these kinds of products. You will probably need a rod for this purpose. Almost all wiring systems, however, are up-to-date enough. You can use an outlet checker to test for this problem.
Earthing mats are an advanced technology that gives you the benefits of getting in direct contact with the ground while remaining in your home. By using this product for 30 minutes a day, you can decrease inflammation, boost recovery times, and sleep better. You can also opt for a grounding sheet for even more improved sleep.
Those with electrosensitivity should be careful when using this product, however, because it requires electrical outlets for their charge. Still, most people will get the benefits of coming in contact with the earth all while staying grounded and barefoot inside.