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Cell Phones May Pose Cancer Risk for Kids

kids health

Kids Love Cell Phones

Think twice before your let your kids use your cell phone (or their own!).

Holding a cellphone against your ear may be hazardous to your health. So may stuffing it in a pocket against your body,” writes Randall Strauss in The New York Times.

In fact, if you read the fine print of the legal notices with most cellphones, you’ll see that they feature a warning about holding the phone against your head or body.

Devra Davis, an epidemiologist who has worked for the University of Pittsburgh and has published a book about cellphone radiation, “Disconnect” says that we should be concerned about low-energy radiation from cell phones.

While there has not been a general increase in brain cancer since the arrival of cell phones, there has been an increase among 20-29 year-olds who use cell phones more than any other group.

“Most cancers have multiple causes,” said Davis, who says that research shows that low-energy radiation could damage cells in ways that could possibly lead to cancer.

What’s most disturbing is that children are more vulnerable to radiation than adults. Strauss writes:

Radiation that penetrates only two inches into the brain of an adult will reach much deeper into the brains of children because their skulls are thinner and their brains contain more absorptive fluid.

According to Davis, no field studies have been completed on cellphone radiation and children.

The Interphone International Case-Control Study, the largest study of cellphone use and brain cancer, showed that subjects who used a cellphone 10 or more years doubled the risk of developing brain gliomas, a type of tumor.

Carolyn recently reported that according to a recent Pew survey, “82% of 12-17 year olds sleep with or next to their cell phones” — clearly, that’s not such a great idea for various reasons.

So what can we do to reduce the risk of cancer? Play it safe by wearing headsets or a speaker phone, texting instead of calling and to keep calls short. Pregnant women should also keep phones away from their abdomens.

Are you concerned about cell phone safety?

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photo: flickr/Nezemnaya

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