Kids are not just smaller adults, their growing minds and bodies make them extremely vulnerable to the harmful effects of the environment around them, including the radiations emitting out of a smartphone/tablet or any other electrical gadget. Because children are adopting technology at a far younger age than ever before, it’s even more important to investigate and educate the parents if exposure to Electromagnetic radiation is a health hazard.
To educate parents about EMF (Electromagnetic radiation), it is essential to know what is EMF and does it have any severe impact on the human body?
Firstly, let’s see what EMF is. Electromagnetic radiation is a type of radiation that includes visible light, radio waves, gamma rays, and X-rays, in which electric and magnetic fields vary simultaneously.
Interestingly, small amounts of EMF’s may be beneficial to the human body, because like other stressors they send the body into cleanup/repair mode. It seems that the real concern comes when exposure goes over the permissible limit or what the body can reasonably repair, which leads us to five facts about EMFs that every parent should know:
1. Kids are more vulnerable to EMF- Children who begin using mobile phones at ages younger than 20 have a 520 percent elevated risk of developing glioma – even after just one year of use (this is compared to a 140 percent high risk across all ages). Children’s bodies operate differently than adults. Thus, the DNA of children is more vulnerable to the errors that occur during normal protein synthesis, and any damaged DNA is more likely to pass to more cells (through cell division and replication), spreading rapidly in the body. Also, the bone in a child’s head is thinner as compared to an adult, leading to less shielding of the brain’s neurons from external forces.
2. Weaker signal strength in mobile phones may be harmful- Keep an eye on the signal strength of your mobile phone (i.e. the number of signal bars you have). The weaker your cell signal, the harder your phone has to work and the more radiation it gives off. It’s better to wait until you have a stronger signal before using your device.
3. Large-scale exposure to EMF causes sleep deprivation- A thing that every parent should be aware is that too much EMF exposure can decrease melatonin production, which is associated with poor sleep quality, increased ageing, and lowered immune function.
4. Increase in the cases of Autism and ADHD- A recent study conducted by researchers revealed that fetal exposure to Electromagnetic radiation may result in Autism and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Syndrome) in children as developing brains of kids are more susceptible to these harmful radiations.
5. EMF exposure might increase blood-brain permeability- Human beings exposed to EMF’s mimic the equivalent of a cell phone show an increase in blood-brain barrier permeability almost immediately. Kids have a more permeable blood-brain barrier compared to adults. So every parent needs to consider this aspect when deciding whether to let them play games on our smartphones or iPads.
There seems to be a dose-response relationship also sometimes called exposure-response relationship (the change in effect on any human caused by differing levels of exposure to radiations) with these radiations. So the important thing here is to be wise and take these precautionary steps to reduce exposure from all sources and not panic.