Technology can be very helpful when used safely. Warnings about cell phone use and exposure aren’t new – especially in regard to children. In the U.S. Silicon Valley parents have been limiting their kids’ use and exposure to digital, electronic, and wireless technology for many years already. Recently their efforts have become more obvious, desperate, even paranoid (spying on their nannies). Not surprisingly, insurance companies don’t seem interested in doing business with wireless companies anymore.
Outside of the U.S., government agencies and officials have been taking an active role in raising awareness to protect children and everybody else from cell phones and other sources of digital, electronic and wireless tech for many years as well.
Harm from cell phone use and exposure can be caused by:
- Blue Light which can cause macular degeneration, blindness, insomnia and more.
- Cell phone radiation (including Bluetooth) which can cause cancer, disrupt the blood brain barrier, cause memory loss, behavioral, emotional, and mental health issues, antibiotic resistance, and much more.
- Digital Addiction from apps, games, social media, and other software and products that have been deliberately created by tech companies and psychologists using “persuasive design.”
Regardless, according to Verizon, “high-tech” families provide cell phones to children at 7 ½ years of age (on average). Of course, ultimately it’s up to parents if and when they want to provide cell phones, other devices, and wearables to their kids. Anyone making money off these products will always be willing to justify parents’ purchases.
On November 1, Environmental Working Group (EWG) was one of many organizations that issued a statement about research results proving harm from cell phone radiation exposure. Excerpts include:
The largest-ever animal study of cellphone radiation effects, released today by the National Toxicology Program, or NTP, confirms earlier evidence from human studies that cellphone radiation increases the risk of cancer. EWG said the findings reinforce the need for people, especially children, to exercise caution when using cellphones and other radiation-emitting devices.
“This report should raise alarms for policymakers and awareness for all Americans,” said Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., senior science advisor for children’s environmental health at EWG. “These studies should have been done before more than 90 percent of Americans, including millions of children, started using this technology day in and day out.”
In a press release, John Bucher, Ph.D., an NTP senior scientist, stated, “We believe that the link between radio frequency radiation and tumors in male rats is real, and the external experts agreed.”
Today, 2G and 3G wireless networks are being replaced with 5G networks, which use a distinct and untested form of radio frequency. As EWG reported, the Federal Communications Commission is bowing to industry lobbyists and clearing the way for 5G installation in a way that would bypass federal environmental laws.
Meanwhile, parents and concerned government agencies are advocating for children to spend less time on cellphones and other wireless devices. As The New York Times reported this week, parents in Silicon Valley, the community that helped make cellphones so irresistible, are growing increasingly concerned about the effects of technology on kids’ development.
In December 2017, the State of California issued official guidelines advising cellphone users to keep phones away from their bodies. When the groundbreaking guidelines were made public, the state’s Department of Public Health Director Karen Smith said:
Simple steps, such as not keeping your phone in your pocket and moving it away from your bed at night, can help reduce exposure for both children and adults … Children’s brains develop through the teenage years and may be more affected by cell phone use. Parents should consider reducing the time their children use cell phones and encourage them to turn the devices off at night.