Among the various questions you may ask yourself about cell phones is whether mobile radiation is harmful. The short answer is yes, and it is possible that you are getting a dose of radiofrequency energy every time you use your phone. However, this radiation can have many different effects on you. Some of these effects include:
Cell phone usage has risen exponentially in the past 10-20 years
Increasing cell phone use has been a trend that’s been growing exponentially over the past decade. It’s no secret that cell phones have sparked social and economic changes, while also saving consumers money. In fact, it’s become such a ubiquitous device that it’s hard to find someone who doesn’t own one.
Cell phones have become ubiquitous, but the smartphone has emerged as the star of the show. The smartphone has become an integral part of everyday life, especially for the younger set. In fact, smartphone use is expected to skyrocket to more than two-thirds of the global population by 2026.
The smartphone has become the most important part of a businessperson’s toolkit, allowing them to communicate with their business associates more efficiently. Mobile telephony has been a driving force behind the development of the rural economy, while also facilitating social and cultural changes.
Radiofrequency energy from mobile phones
Despite claims of health hazards, many scientists and health professionals believe that the radiofrequency energy from mobile phones is not harmful. However, some studies show that exposure to the radiation could cause problems. These studies are still being conducted.
RF radiation can cause heating to the head, ear, heart, and other body parts. In addition, it can interfere with navigation systems. It is recommended to keep the phone at least 30-40 cm away from the body during text messaging and internet browsing.
The specific absorption rate (SAR) is a measure of the rate of absorption of RF energy by the human body. This is measured in watts per kilogram of body weight. SAR decreases rapidly with increasing distance from the source.
Long-term exposure to radiofrequency energy
During the early 1990s, mobile phones began to become widely used. Today, they are even used by younger children. Many of these devices are capable of transmitting peak power of 0.1 to 2 watts. The power levels decrease rapidly with increasing distance from the handset.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has an ongoing program to monitor research in this area. It recommends that people use their phones in good reception and that they use them 30-40 cm away from their bodies. It is also advised to use hands-free kits.
The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) provides scientific advice on the safety of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields. The Commission reviewed two studies: one on rodents and one on children and teens. The results of both studies found no significant correlation between the use of cell phones and brain tumors.
Effects on the brain and lungs
Despite extensive research, scientists have not yet found conclusive evidence linking mobile radiation to the development of cancers of the brain or lungs. But cell phones are not the only source of ionizing radiation. Other sources include radar and microwave ovens, infrared radiation, and x-rays.
Studies involving small animals such as mice and rats have not yet found conclusive evidence linking cell phone use to cancers of the brain or lungs. However, some studies have found that these cells have been damaged by radiofrequency radiation.
Mobile phone radiation is believed to increase the local temperature in the brain by a fraction of a degree. This can lead to cell apoptosis or cell death.
Effects on the skin
Several studies have shown that mobile radiation may have some effects on the skin. The effects of mobile radiation on the skin vary depending on the duration of exposure.
Radiation induced skin lesions tend to appear in cycles. The duration of the cycle depends on the dose and depth of penetration.
The Global Solar UV index, developed by the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations Environment Programme, indicates the level of solar UVR at Earth’s surface. This index alerts us to the need for protective measures.
The effects of mobile radiation on the skin include increased skin pigmentation, a decrease in skin elasticity, and a disruption of the skin’s circadian rhythm. In addition, blue light from cell phones may cause damage to the skin.
Impacts of mobile towers on wildlife
Various studies have pointed to the negative effects of electromagnetic radiations from mobile towers on wildlife. These include the potential effects of EMR on bees, bee colonies and other pollinators. However, there is no definitive link between mobile phone tower radiation and human health.
In the United Kingdom, a study found that the density of urban bird species decreased 75% over 30 years. This coincided with the proliferation of cellular mobile base stations. Other studies show that EMR exposure may reduce the territorial availability of some species.
The Indian Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) constituted an expert committee to study the possible effects of communication towers on wildlife. The committee comprises officials from the Department of Telecommunications and the Indian Council for Medical Research. The report was submitted in 2011.
The inter-ministerial committee studied the possible effects of communication towers on bees, birds, fish and other fauna. It concluded that EMR may be responsible for the decline in animal populations. In order to minimise the effects of EMR on wildlife, the advisory suggests that new cell phone towers be installed at a distance from sensitive areas.