English Paper on Negative Effects of Cell Phone Exposure

Negative Effects of Cell Phone Exposure

Introduction

At the turn of the century, there was a significant social, economic, as well as political change across the world that was triggered by technology, especially the internet and cellphone. The smartphone, which is the latest variant of cellphones, is a versatile miniature computer that allows the owner to do more than text or call. According to Economides and Nikolaou (2008), the smartphone’s capability to take high-resolution photos and videos, connection to the interment, as well as supporting an array of applications (such as books) has made it a must-have. Consequently, cellphone manufacturers have shifted their attention to Android as well as IOS devices manufacturing. Despite their versatility, smartphones have been at the center of several health discussions in which health technocrats have highlighted the risk of cancer due to their overuse. However, the true nature of the health hazard caused by the smartphone is yet to be comprehensively discussed.

Discussion

Cellphones are known to emit radiation thus forming the basis of the hypothesis about them causing cancer and other health hazards. As stated by Carlo and Martin (2002), they discharge forms of non-ionized Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) known as Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) radiation as well as Radio Frequency (RF). The RF radiation is a product of cell signals, Bluetooth, as well as Wi-Fi. On the contrary, ELF radiation is emitted by a particular hardware part of the phone. The body tissues that are close to where the device is held, in most cases around the ears, absorb both RF and ELF radiation.

The degree of exposure or the amount of radiation emitted is reliant on several factors, including the type of cell phone or smartphone used, distance from the phone antenna, time spent using the phone, and the distance of the user from a cell tower. High-end phones manufactured by major manufacturers are tested for the amount of radiation they emit and then covered with a material that reduces the health risks associated with the devices. Nevertheless, smaller manufacturers who have just joined a competitive market may not be as cautious about the radiation health risks because they cannot afford to do so.

Though not as destructive as ionized radiation, for instance, that found in an X-ray or CT scan, recent studies, including that conducted by Moulder et al. (2009) have indicated that non-ionizing EMF radiation can cause specific health complications. Since the beginning of the 21st century, when more individuals became attached to their cellphones, various discussions concerning identifying the definitive health risks caused by cellphones have emerged. It is for this reason that the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences experimented with rats in 2009. The result indicated that of the rat specimen used 2% to 3% developed brain tumors (p. 107). Additionally, 2% to 7% developed heart tumors that could adversely affect the health of the rats. The results also indicated that only 1% of the female population was affected by the radiation to cause brain tumors. Additionally, 2% developed heart tumors (110). In reference to recent evidence linking RF radiation to cancer, the World Health Organization’ (WHO) Department of International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) argues that it has become more apparent that smartphone may be triggers of several cancers. Moreover, children with underdeveloped, thinner skull as well as underdeveloped brains are more at risk to EMF radiation as compared to adults. Given that a lot of children own cell phones nowadays, chances are there will be an increase in tumor cases if the results of these studies hold water.

Current researches on conducted by George and Schram have shown that cellphones cause health issues such as;

  1. According to a study by Moulder et al., (2009) RF causes a reduction of Melatonin a factor that causes the brain to lose its natural rhythms thus causing insomnia .
  2. Decreased bone density in the pelvis. The study by Moulder et al. (2009) indicated that cell phone radiation found in electromagnetic fields emitted by cell phones have the capability of affecting cartilage production thus altering mineral density around the areas of the body on which the phones are the cellphones or placed.
  3. Infertility in men. Radiation from cell phones affects the functions hypothalamic, pituitary, thyroid, and ovarian or testicular axis, thus inhibiting optimum reproductive function (Eapen, Kumar, & Bhat, 2010). Men are at most risk than women because these glands are mostly affected when producing sperm.
  4. Deficient brain function. According to the results of a 2014 study by Rowan (2014), RF radiation waves were identified to have a direct link to brain diseases. Such as leukemia, brain tumor, inflammatory responses, genotoxic effects, as well as neurodegenerative diseases, which cause a variety of neurological effects including insomnia in children aged below 12 years old (pp16-22). According to the study, it was evident the cell phone radiation could pass through the thin, undeveloped cranial cavity in children. Additionally, cellphone RF waves are said to trigger epileptic seizures and migraine headaches in some individuals after prolonged use.
  5. Effect on female fertility Pre-birth effect on fetal growth. Women are affected by cell phone radiation because RF affects the hypothalamic or ovarian axis that can cause ovulatory and fertility challenges. Additionally, pregnant women are highly at risks as cell phone radiation prevents a fetus from developing fully (Moulder et., 2009) An experiment by National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences on cellphone radiation on pregnant mice highlighted the effects of radiation on the development of a fetus. It caused premature birth or in other cases underdeveloped mice at birth.

Conclusion

Cellphones have become part of the day-to-day life considering the variety of functions that have been provided to users by their manufacturers. Cellphones are currently the most social gadgets in human history. However, there over the past, there have been a variety of issues that have been brought forward about the health risks brought about by the devices. Undoubtedly, it is evident that though the amount of radiation presented by cellphones is considered less harmful compared to that of X-ray machines, there are a variety of health issues that are assistive of them. It is evident that cell phone radiation causes Insomnia, decreased bone density in the pelvis, infertility in men, deficient brain function, and effect on female fertility Pre-birth effect on fetal growth. It has been found that children are at more risk of developing complications that are brought about by the use of phones because of their underdeveloped craniums. Thus, it is essential for parents to regulate the amount of time that their children spend talking on the phone. There is also need for adults to regulate the rate of use of the devices.

 

 

References

Carlo, G., & Schram, M. (2002). Cell phones: Invisible hazards in the wireless age. Basic Books.

Eapen, C., Kumar, B., & Bhat, A. K. (2010). Prevalence of cumulative trauma disorders in cell phone users. Journal of Musculoskeletal research13(03), 137-145. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Charu_Eapen2/publication/274910911_Prevalence_of_cumulative_trauma_disorders_in_cell_phone_users/links/573175df08ae100ae55755ba/Prevalence-of-cumulative-trauma-disorders-in-cell-phone-users.pdf

Economides, A. A., & Nikolaou, N. (2008). Evaluation of handheld devices for mobile learning. International Journal of Engineering Education24(1). http://www.academia.edu/download/6588668/10.1.1.137.9318.pdf

Moulder, J. E., Erdreich, L. S., Malyapa, R. S., Merritt, J., Pickard, W. F., & Vijayalaxmi. (2009). Cell phones and cancer: What is the evidence for a connection?. Radiation Research151(5), 513-531.https://www.researchgate.net/profile/John_Moulder/publication/12978385_Cell_Phones_and_Cancer_What_Is_the_Evidence_for_a_Connection/links/09e415115329fb300e000000/Cell-Phones-and-Cancer-What-Is-the-Evidence-for-a-Connection.pdf

Rowan, C. (2014). 10 Reasons Why Handheld Devices Should Be Banned for Children Under the Age of 12. The Huffington Post.http://www.mrshatzi.com/topics/cell-phones-in-class/articles/10-reasons.pdf