A new study published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, revealed that asthma, a breathing disorder, is disproportionately commonly found in children whose moms have been exposed to high magnetic fields during pregnancy.  Power lines, microwaves, vacuum cleaners, and hair dryers all increase risk.

Hundreds of pregnant women in northern California were told to carry a meter in order to assess daily exposure to magnetic fields. Evaluations on 626 children revealed a positive relationship between asthma incidence and the frequency of asthma in these children.

Children of individuals with the most intense exposure levels to magnetic fields were 3.5 times more likely to develop asthma than children of mothers with the lowest exposure, the study revealed.

Study author Dr. De-Kun Li told HealthDay that "the public health risk is serious" if exposure to magnetic fields does indeed cause asthma.

It remains unclear why exposure to magnetic fields may increase risk of asthma, Li told Reuters.  He added that past studies have found that fields affect immune response.

May experts are urging pregnant women to limit their exposure to magnetic fields by decreasing proximity from electrical appliances, Li told the Daily Mail.