Backstory

Due to an un-reviewed guest blog post on the Scientific American causing concern on the Internet regarding a possible link between EMFs (electric and magnetic fields) and cancer caused from exposure. We felt compelled to educate potential customers and set the record straight regarding EMFs and the materials we use.

According to Discover® magazine's website: "[The blog post in Scientific American] gets the researchers’ explanation exactly backwards: it said that the springs acted as antennas and amplified radio waves, increasing the likelihood of cancer; the researchers actually said the springs attenuate radio waves and decrease incidence of cancer."

Facts & Misinformation

Since then, there have been a handful of videos uploaded to YouTube (such as this video and this video), which show a person holding an EMF meter (electromagnetic radiation detector) while measuring the results over a traditional innerspring mattress. The innersprings shown in these videos are continuous coil innersprings — which means the coils are inter-connected with a tightly coiled wire called a helical. (Helical wires are sometimes used in antenna.)

Please note: We do not use continuous coils (or open coils) or connecting helical wires between the coils in any Brentwood Home Mattress. Instead, we use fabric-encased innersprings — meaning, every coil is individually wrapped inside sealed fabric pockets so they function independently and are not interconnected. (As reference, this video explains the different types of innersprings.) This is important, because if the coils are not connected, their ability to function as an antenna is greatly diminished. 

Factcheck: Snopes

The misconception that coil mattresses promote cancer came from a 'Scientific American' blog post that interpreted the results of an already wildly speculative paper incorrectly.

Claim: Coiled mattresses cause cancer by amplifying radio waves.
Rating: False.

Read Snopes EMF Fact Check Article

Background: According to the EPA


Overview: Electric and Magnetic Fields

Electromagnetic fields (EMF) are a combination of electric and magnetic fields of energy that surround any electrical device that is plugged in and turned on.

  • Scientific experiments have not clearly shown whether or not exposure to EMF increases cancer risk. Scientists continue to conduct research on the issue.

  • The strength of electromagnetic fields fades with distance from the source. Limiting the amount of time spent around a source and increasing the distance from a source reduces exposure.

About Electric and Magnetic Fields

Electromagnetic radiation consists of waves of electric and magnetic energy moving together through space. Electric fields are produced by electrical charges and magnetic fields are produced by the flow of current through wires or electrical devices.

EMFs are commonly found near power lines and other electronic devices such as smart meters. Electric and magnetic fields become weaker the further you move away from them. The fields from power lines and electrical devices have a much lower frequency than other types of EMF, such as microwaves and radio waves. EMFs from power lines are considered to be extremely low frequency. Scientific studies have not clearly shown whether exposure to EMF increases cancer risk. Scientists continue to conduct research on the issue.

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