Radiation from your iPhone?
Are your gadgets harmful to your health? Can your iPhone cause cancer? Before you start to panic, read on to learn about what cellphone radiation is, how it affects your health and what to do to protect yourself.
What is cellphone radiation?
Cellphones transmit and receive calls from network towers using radio waves. Other everyday gadgets like radios, TV’s and microwave ovens also use the same technology. All these gadgets emit low frequency radiation that is non-ionizing – which is not really harmful in small amounts. The harmful ionizing kind of radiation, like X-ray, messes with electrons that mutate cells and cause cancer very fast.
The EMF radiation that is emitted by any digital device is very quickly dissipated with distance, so if you put some distance between your body and your phone… even a few centimetres, it is usually enough to reduce the effect.
However, cell phone radiation, although non-ionizing, is a special case because we use and keep phones so close to our body for very longer periods of time.
Whenever we stick a phone to our ear to make a call, the brain is exposed to radiation in small amounts.
Is it bad for me?
In short – yes. Pretty much. Although a long term effect is not yet scientifically proven for sure, there are two problems you should be aware that have been repeatedly demonstrated.
Blood erythrocytes clustering
Our brain has a very diverse network of tiny capillaries that deliver oxygen in our blood to different sections of our brain. Our neurons need to eat and breathe. Those capillaries are really tiny and under the influence of low intensity EMF, the erythrocytes in our blood tend to form some tight clusters. They can no longer fit into those tiny blood vessels and they simply create a plug that closes these particular blood vessels forever.
After that, this particular part of the brain is dead forever since it can no longer get oxygen and food.
This happens very gradually since this exposure is very small. If it accumulates in one area where the cell phone has the greatest exposure, it will create a tumorous growth in time, especially in addition to the second problem…
Heating up your brain
Exposure to low intensity radio waves causes increased heat in the brain when the phone is pressed against the ear during calls. This increased heat dissipates and the temperature returns to normal after the call is ended or when the phone is moved away. The question is not really whether small amounts of low frequency radiation is bad (it is not – it can’t be avoided) but whether regular long-term exposure is.
A great deal of research has gone into the effects of prolonged use of mobiles, particularly in causing disease or tumours that lead to brain cancer. The World Health Organization says there is not enough data yet to conclusively link increased risk of cancers to cellphone use. Cellphones have only been used widely for around a decade and cancers typically take around 30 – 40 years to develop. However, they have classified exposure to radiation from prolonged cellphone use as “possibly carcinogenic” (WHO, 2011)
What can I do?
There is no need to panic and definitely no need to trash your phone. Fortunately for us, magnetic field created by our digital devices dissipate very quickly with distance. A few precautionary measures today are all that you need to avoid being terminally sorry later. Exposure to radiation is still exposure, and while we can’t avoid it completely, it makes sense to limit what we can where we can. Here’s how:
Text instead of call when possible – While not always the best option, it still needs to be said. Those of us who use cellphones for work or to keep in touch with family members out of state will still call, so instead:
Use wired headphones – Get a simple headset like an ear bud with a wire. Do not use any wireless devices like Bluetooth. They also use the same radio waves to transmit and receive the signal and people tend to wear them all day without removing. This is as harmful as or even more harmful than using a cell phone to your ear.
Don’t sleep with your phone tucked under your pillow – Your cellphone transmits and receives radio waves every time it is turned on. Again, move it away from you whenever you can. Just do not keep it anywhere near you. Nothing is that important to wake you up at night.
Keep in mind, your mobile phone emits EMF even when it is set to airplane mode. Any modern digital device does. It comes mainly from the CPU of the device and parts around it, so if you want to leave it close to you when you sleep, just switch it off completely.
Avoid use in low coverage areas – Mobile phones increase power in order to connect when the signal is weak. This means they are emitting even more radiation than usual. Radiation is also stronger when connecting the call at the start so put whatever possible space between you and your mobile at these times.
Limit use for children – Regulate children’s call minutes or make sure they use ear phones. Children are considered a special risk group because their brains are still developing, their skulls are thinner and they started using mobile phones earlier in life compared to adults now.
Keep your phone as a phone – Yes, I know… most modern phones have entire computers stuck inside of them. With Internet, games, books and so on. But keep in mind what its main reason for existence is. It’s a phone. Use it to call and text people and put it away when you are done. Don’t get addicted to your phone. Remember, even some 10 years ago, mobile phones didn’t exist and people were just fine without them.
Some countries and a few US states have already issued safety precautions similar to those tips. Following these can only keep you and your family on the safe side.