Pregnant women who use hairdryers, microwaves, vacuum cleaners or who live near pylons could be putting their babies at risk of asthma, claim scientists.
They warn that exposing unborn children to potentially harmful magnetic energy produced by household appliances and power lines could treble their child’s chances of suffering from the condition.
Experts believe that the finding could partly explain why asthma rates in children have increased so dramatically in the last few decades.
Scientists in California looked at 800 mothers-to-be and worked out the levels of magnetic energy – known as electromagnetic fields – to which they were exposed.
Their babies were followed for the next 13 years to find out how many developed asthma.