Parents Ignoring Mobile Phone Risks

Mobile Phone Risks, Mobile Phone Protection

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Parents of young children are disregarding health concerns and continuing to allow their youngsters to use mobile phones, research revealed today.
The number of children aged under 10 who own mobiles has doubled in the past two years despite repeated warnings over the health risks they pose.
Health campaigners say parents are taking the view that the security that handsets provide outweighs the possible damage caused to young brains from radiation.
Statistics from international research consultancy MobileYouth show that just over a million children aged five to nine in the UK have their own phones.

That figure is predicted to rise to 1.5million by 2007.
It also predicts that this year the number of under-16s in the UK owning a mobile phone will grow to 5.5million – an increase of nearly half a million on last year.

The average age at which a child gets a first phone is eight – compared to 12 in the US.
Youngsters are thought to be at higher risk from mobile phone radiation because their nervous system is still developing, they absorb more energy though their head and are likely to be exposed to emissions for more years.
Sir William Stewart, chairman of the Health Protection Agency, has called on parents to ban under-eights from using mobile phones and wants teenagers to restrict their use and rely more on sending text messages.

Michael Clarke, radiation expert at the Health Protection Agency, said there is a contradiction in parents calling for mobile phone masts to be erected away from schools and then allowing their youngsters access to handsets which expose them to far higher levels of radiation.
Handsets expose users to between 1,000 and 10,000 times more radiation than mobile phone masts. Dr Clarke said: “We feel we should discourage prolonged use of mobile phones.
“There isn’t actually a proven health risk. What we are talking about is the possibility of one emerging after prolonged use.
“Our view is that it is sensible to take a precautionary approach to mobile use, especially in the very young, because it is such a new thing.

“I cannot predict what I might find out tomorrow. Children should not be spending hours a day talking to their friends. Parents are the best people to judge the needs of their children but they should have all the information.”
The UK’s first mobile phone specially designed for children was withdrawn from sale by distributor Communic8 earlier this year after a Government report raised health concerns about youngsters using handsets.
The MyMo phone was aimed at four to eight-year-olds to use in an emergency.

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How Dangerous Is Cell Phone Radiation Part 1

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How Dangerous Is Cell Phone Radiation Part 2

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Today we’re going to pick up virtually any consumer magazine or open any Internet news web site and read about a frightening new threat: That radiation from cell phones is dangerous, perhaps causing brain tumors or other cancers, maybe even cooking your brain like an egg or like popcorn. Most people have no knowledge of science other than what they hear on the news, so we have a whole population growing up with this understanding. Is the fear justified? Do cell phones have the potential to cause physical harm, or are they completely safe? Or, like so many other questions, is the truth somewhere in the middle?

Let’s take a closer look at exactly what kind of threat is being reported. A recent article on quotes Dr. Debra Davis, Director of the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Environmental Oncology, saying that “You’re just roasting your bone marrow” and asking “Do you really want to play Russian roulette with your head?” The article goes on to give five recommendations for limiting your exposure to cell phone radiation: Using a headset, using the speakerphone, getting a different phone, and so on. CNN followed up with another article with more quotes from Dr. Davis, this time saying that children are especially at risk because their brains are still developing, so they should be allowed to use cell phones in emergencies only.

As the director of an oncology center, she must have all kinds of experience treating cancer patients, and since she’s going on CNN to talk about cell phone risks she must have a lot of experience dealing with cancer caused by cell phones. Right? Well, you’d think, but apparently CNN is not quite that particular about their guests. Dr. Davis’ Ph.D. is in “science studies”, whatever that is, and she is neither a medical doctor nor does she have any specialization in physical sciences like radiation. Now, I’m not trying to disrespect Dr. Davis — she has a fine background loaded with experience and all sorts of publications and accolades in her field — but I do want to draw attention to the fact that when CNN brings a doctor onto television to talk about a health problem, you shouldn’t take anything for granted. You’re the one who assumed that she treats cancer patients and has seen harmful effects from cell phone radiation. The fact is that the only danger Dr. Davis actually cited was that “since cell phones have only been in widespread use for 10 years or so, the long-term effects of their radiation waves on the brain has yet to be determined.” Neither she, nor CNN, cited a single case of harm being caused by a cell phone, nor did they present any theoretical arguments indicating any plausible danger.

Dr. Davis is also dramatically wrong on one very significant point: That there has not yet been time for long-term studies to have been conducted, or that the question of cell phones and cancer is otherwise inadequately studied. In fact, the Journal of the National Cancer Institute published the results of a massive study in Denmark that followed the cancer histories of 420,000 cell phone users over 13 years. You’d think that someone in Dr. Davis’ position would know about that, or at least take the slightest trouble to search for studies before going on CNN to proclaim that no such studies exist. The study’s main interest was to search for increased incidences of brain or nervous system cancers, salivary gland cancer, and leukemia. The study concluded:

Risk for these cancers … did not vary by duration of cellular telephone use, time since first subscription, age at first subscription, or type of cellular telephone (analogue or digital). Analysis of brain and nervous system tumors showed no statistically significant [standardized incidence ratios] for any subtype or anatomic location. The results of this investigation … do not support the hypothesis of an association between use of these telephones and tumors of the brain or salivary gland, leukemia, or other cancers.

The lack of any connection is not surprising, given that no plausible hypothesis exists for how a cell phone could cause tissue damage. RF below the visible spectrum, which includes the frequencies used by cell phones and all radio devices, is not ionizing radiation and so has no potential to damage living cells or break any chemical bonds. Microwave ovens, which operate just above cell phones on the frequency scale, work by oscillating such an extremely powerful field back and forth, causing the water molecules to rub against each other and create heat by friction. Cell phone signals are three orders of magnitude weaker, too weak to move the water molecules, and do not oscillate to cause friction. Scratch the heat hypothesis, scratch the ionizing radiation hypothesis, and there are no plausible alternatives. Of course it’s not possible to prove that there is no potential for harm, but all sources of harm known or theorized to date are clearly excluded.

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