Microwave irradiation resulted in thinner cell walls, smaller chloroplasts and mitochondria, and enhanced emissions of volatile compounds, in particular, monoterpenes and green leaf volatiles (GLV). These effects were stronger for WLAN-frequency microwaves. Essential oil content was enhanced by GSM-frequency microwaves, but the effect of WLAN-frequency microwaves was inhibitory. There was a direct relationship between microwave-induced structural and chemical modifications of the three plant species studied.
For adults and children alike, the process by which wireless radiation may cause cancer remains uncertain, but it is thought to be indirect. Wireless radiation has been shown to damage the blood-brain barrier, a vital defense mechanism that shields the brain from carcinogenic chemicals elsewhere in the body (resulting, for example, from secondhand cigarette smoke). Wireless radiation has also been shown to interfere with DNA replication, a proven progenitor of cancer. In each of these cases, the risks are higher for children: Their skulls, being smaller, absorb more radiation than adults’ skulls do, while children’s longer life span increases their cumulative exposure.29
These studies are not definitive. Much more research is needed. But they raise serious questions that cast doubt on the adequacy of the FCC rules to safeguard public health. The FCC emissions cap allows 20 times more radiation to reach the head than the body as a whole, does not account for risks to children’s developing brains and smaller bodies and considers only short-term cell phone use, not frequent calling patterns over decades.
40. Set clear rules and guidelines for downloading media and apps. Giving your kids free reign to use all the features on their smartphones can quickly rack up your wireless bill and introduce security risks to their devices. “Downloading new ringtones or games can add unwanted expenses or hidden bugs. Set limits and rules about downloads.” – Amanda Martin, Cell Phone Safety Tips for your Child, Securemama.com; Twitter: @securemama
One of the convenient features of having a smartphone is to quickly access email or social media accounts with just a tap of a finger. However, this also means that you are always connected to accounts that may contain sensitive information. Consider logging out of certain accounts if you can so that others can’t access those accounts if they are using your phone. Keep in mind that depending on the type of phone you have, you might not be able to log out of some accounts, such as email accounts, but may have to remove the entire account from your phone. In this case, make your decision based on your own privacy and safety risk. While it may be inconvenient to access the account through the browser instead, it may be safer.
Cancer is the obvious start. An early concern with mobile technology was clusters of the disease around those living near phone masts. One study in Israel found a 4.5-fold increase in cancers of all kinds in the immediate vicinity of a mast (Int. J. Cancer Prev., 2004). In 2009, a Korean team of researchers carried out a pool analysis of the results of 23 studies, which involved almost 38,000 subjects.