The mobile phone is omnipresent in our lives and is totally addictive. Using it to not only communicate with one another but also to chat, play games, see movies, read, follow news and so much more. We know and recognize it as a tool that has revolutionized how we communicate. However, there is a lot of concern about the impact of mobile radiation on human health. Many doctors, researchers, and scientists all over the world suggest precautions to reduce the level of radiation you absorb from using your mobile phone. Cell phone manufacturers also have the warnings in their fine print.
Let’s look at some of the major health issues caused by phone radiation:
* Fertility and reproduction – Prolonged exposure to radio frequencies has a negative impact on fertility and many researchers have associated RF with reduced sperm count, motility and concentration.
* Neurotoxic effects – Prolonged exposure to wireless can reduce brain cells causing brain cell death in the memory and learning centers of the brain. Cell phone radiations also alters brain activity in humans
* Cognition and impaired memory – Many research papers have demonstrated that wireless signals can damage cognitive abilities such as learning, memory, attention and reaction
* Hearing loss – Excessive use of mobile phones can result in high-frequency hearing loss and inner ear damage. Studies have also shown a significant risk of tumors on the auditory nerve in the brain
The harmful radiations also lead to lower productivity, fatigue, headaches and machine breakdowns etc.
You also might not be aware that The World Health Organization (WHO) and International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified radiofrequency electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B). In addition to that, in India, the Rajasthan High Court in 2012 ordered the relocation of mobile towers from educational institutions, hospitals and playgrounds. Supreme Court of India upheld the 2012 Rajasthan High Court’s decision to remove all cell towers from the vicinity of schools, hospitals and playgrounds because of radiation “hazardous to life.”
It is important, therefore, to adopt some precautions to protect ourselves from mobile radiation.
* Keep your cellphone away from the body – It is quite damaging to keep your cellphone in the pocket of your shirt. In fact, avoid keeping it in your pant pockets. Best is to keep the cellphone in the bag.
* Use Landline phone – If you have a landline at your home/workplace. Try using it instead of your cellphones.
* Turn off your phone or put it on airplane mode when not in use – It is difficult to follow but not impossible. Whenever you feel that constant data connectivity is not required for few hours, you can switch it off or put it on airplane mode. Do it as much as possible. You can do it before you go off to sleep.
* Before handing over the phone to your kids to watch the videos, download the videos first and put the phone on airplane mode.
* Talk on speaker – It is better to use hands-free speaker or earphones while talking on the cellphone. Try to make it a habit. Once you are done talking, remove your earphones. If you do not want to use hands-free then keep your phone 1-2 cm away from ear. Do not use Bluetooth.
* Text as much as possible.
* Don’t talk on the phone while your phone is on charging as the amount of radiation emitted by your cellphone while charging is 10 times higher.
* Avoid using your phone on low battery – Try not to access your phone when the battery is low as the radiation increases when battery is low. It is also suggested not to use the phone when signals are low.
* Products & services to purify & mitigate the negative effects of radiations- There are products & services that can nullify the negative effects. Beware of the offerings that claim to reduce radiations. Radiations cannot be used for more than a few minutes but can be purified with simple and effective products / methods. Eg: Envirochip.
The author, Ajay Poddar is Managing Director, Syenergy Environics Ltd