Mobile Phones – A Health Hazard for Children

Mobile Phone Health Hazard, Cellphone Radiation Protection

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The world today is driven by technology. And the youth is at the helm of this technology revolution. This generation relies on technology as heavily as it relies on air for breath. Technology driven communication avenues such as cell phones, social networking websites, chatrooms et al have brought the world to the fingertips of the youth. And the one technology tool at the forefront, considering the frequency of its usage, is the cell phone.

The cellphone today is a lifeline for many. It is estimated that around 4.5 billion people use the cellphone worldwide. And it comes as no surprise that a huge chunk of this quantity consists of the youth. The cellphone is more of a necessity for them than a luxury. Umpteen number of surveys conducted on the youth worldwide have figured out that they consider cellphones an integral part of survival and some have even gone to the extent of saying that they would rather go without food for a day than without their cellphones. With constant texting, calling, listening to music, playing phone games or simply fiddling with the phone being such an integral part of their lifestyles, it is little wonder that not having it around strikes them with paranoia.

However, as is said, excess of everything is bad, it holds true for cell phones too. They do come with their share of cons. The most devastating ill effect caused by cellphones is the electromagnetic radiation that they generate. And the most concerning fact is that medical research on the health hazards caused by cellphones is being carried out at a much slower pace than the rate at which cellphone features and technologies are progressing. And as such prolonged usage of them, especially by the youth, are bound to affect their well being. So far, there has been no conclusive evidence that electromagnetic radiations caused by cellphones cause cancer, tumors and other deadly diseases of the kind, but there have been enough studies and researches that have been conducted to raise eyebrows and suspicions on the same. Prolonged usage has been shown by studies to cause extreme fatigue, high blood pressure, increase of heartbeats and warming of the brain cells, which in no way can do good to the human body.

Another major ill-effect associated with the cellphone is addiction to it which can directly translate into a clumsy personality. Constant usage of the cellphone by the youth devours up the time that they could have otherwise devoted to quality work, leading to inefficiency and lesser mental participation at work. Also it leads to lesser physical activity, as most of us would prefer curling on a bed and talk our hearts out with someone rather than take a stroll on the nearby park. This is also a cause, if not a major one, of rising cases of obesity among youth.

It is an acceptable fact that everyone has a social life and it is indeed fun to talk to someone(or text) over the cellphone about the happenings in our social circle, but it is indeed not fair to our health if we are social to the point that we cannot even imagine a day without that handy lump of metal that facilitates this social communication. So to the ones who are battling cellphone addiction, I am hoping this article helps you break free from the shackles of this destructive dependence, considering the damage that its prolonged usage causes to you.

Use the cellphone judiciously. It is a tool of communication, and let it be just that!

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When it comes to children and teenagers, there have been nearly a dozen countries around the world issuing warnings about the health risks to children and teenagers using cell phones. France is in the process of making it illegal to market cell phones to children under the age of 12. The Unite Kingdom, Germany, Belgium, Israel, Russia, and India have advised that children should have their use of cell phones limited or used only for emergencies.

Finland’s Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority are saying that radiation from cell phones could be a health risk, but research as to the effects of prolonged use is still unclear. In Russia, it has been recommended that children under the age of 18 should not use cell phones at all.

And further, if there were no concerns, why was there a Senate hearing (September 14, 2009) led by Senator Arlen Specter – a brain cancer survivor — to examine the potential dangers of cell phone usage and specifically the risk of Brain Cancer. The outcome of the hearing was inconclusive, but it was concluded additional and better research needed to be done. However, Michael Thun, vice president emeritus of Epidemiology and Surveillance Research for the American Cancer Society, who attended the conference, said it could be too early as yet to know if there are long-term effects of cell phone use, because cancer often takes decades to manifest. As an example, it took 30 to 40 years after wide use of cigarettes that epidemiologists saw a big rise in lung cancer. By the 1950’s, lung cancer rates had an increase of nine-fold. Radiation researcher, Dariusz Leszczynski of Finland, also spoke at the hearing saying, “the industry safety standard are not sufficiently supported because there has been very limited research with human volunteers, including children and on the effects of long-term human exposure.”

There are numerous studies in progress around the world. And newer studies are on the rise including a 10-year study on the effects of cell phone radiation on laboratory rats that will be conducted by the National Toxicology Program as part of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Office of Communication in Raleigh, NC and who were selected by the FDA. The results of this study are expected to be published in 2014.

The particular Cell phone Brain Tumor types that scientist are addressing in research studies are gliomas, meningiomas and acoustic neuroma.

Gliomas are most often fast growing cancerous tumors such, but they can be benign or slow growing. A glioma is a central nervous system (CNS) tumor with the most common site involving the brain, but it can also affect the spinal cord or optic nerve. Several studies show evidence that development of a glioma increases with years of cell phone usage.

Meningiomas are tumors that arise from the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord. The majorities of these types of tumors are non-cancerous and only rarely are they cancerous.

Acoustic Neuromas are non-cancerous tumors that develop on the nerve that connects the ear to the brain. These types of tumors usually grow slowly and as it grows there can be hearing loss and loss of balance. Sometimes the tumor can press on the brainstem and in rare cases it can grow large enough to compress the brainstem and create a life-threatening situation.

As part of many studies, the research is on the connection between development of a brain tumor due to cumulative effects from repeated exposure of cell phone EMFs to one side of the head. This is referred to as ipsillateral exposure. Most people favor using their cell phones on side of the head instead of switching back and forth.

As a consumer you have to ask yourself, if there are no risks or danger, why have the instruction manuals of some cellular phone manufacturers include warnings stating in some of their instruction manuals that you should keep the Cell phone pointed away from your body as an example the Nokia 1100, Apple iPhone, and Motorola V195, GSM, and BlackBerry 8300.

Further, you would also have to presume that there must be some risk involve, since there are a number of Wireless Protection Products that are out on the market ranging from Air Tube head sets, Radiation Pouch Shields, Cellular Shields, absorption pendants, and the list goes on. Although not as prolific as Cell phone Accessories, as more information about the risks of cancer and cell phone use emerges, more EMF Protection Products will appear on the market.

While it may be a number of years before some consensus is arrived at on the effects of RF Emissions From Cell phones and their link to brain cancers, there are some basic precautions that can be taken.

• Limit calls to 2 minutes or less.
• Leave phones off when not in use.
• Use the speakerphone when having a conversation.
• Don’t put a cell phone in your pocket or belt in the on mode.
• Do not use a cell phone in enclosed metal spaces such as vehicles or elevators.
• Do not make a call if the signal strength is one bar or less.
• Buy a cellphone with a low SAR (Specific Absorption Rate).

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