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71% of adults sleep with or next to their mobile phones on a typical night. 40% of adults also check their phones when in the bathroom. 86% of smartphone users will check their phones while in conversations with friends and family (in real-time). These statistics paint a stark picture and a bleak reality – we really can’t live without our phones. But in the midst of us getting gradually addicted to our phones, not to mention our other technology, it’s easy to brush aside the negative effects – predominantly from the increasing levels of EMF radiation.
But skeptics don’t fully agree – “EMFs don’t exist – at least not in harmful capacities”, “It’s all theoretical – there’s no science behind it”, and “Any radiation protection isn’t even effective” is what we’ve heard them say. But this blog aims to demystify the main points and try to add some clarity to why EMFs are something we need to pay attention to and take precautions for.
EMF Misconceptions: Separating Fact from Fiction
“There isn’t enough concrete data on EMFs – so their effects can’t be that bad.”
There’s a plethora of data to support the existence of EMFs. This blog goes into detail about how EMFs affect our different biological systems – in particular the nervous system, the reproductive system, and our brain. Many countries have also recognized the severity of these effects, and have implemented corresponding policies in response to protect people as much as possible. The fact of the matter is that when mobile phones first came out in the market, there hadn’t been much research on them, so no one fully understood their impacts. Additionally, when research is done, it does not take into account the number of electronic devices surrounding us on a day-to-day basis. As new technologies such as 5G are continuing to roll out without proper precautions, day by day we’re gathering more and more data – all of which is pointing in the direction of needing to take action ASAP.
“EMFs don’t cause cancer or other serious illnesses.”
There are multiple causes for cancer. Radiation at extremely high levels is a known carcinogen. The World Health Organization also classifies lower levels of EMR, from devices like cell phones, as Class 2B carcinogens. The agents classified as Class 2B carcinogens are defined as “possibly carcinogenic to humans”, and the list of these agents once included cigarettes before more research was done to move them to a higher classification. We also know that EMFs have the power to exacerbate the development of cancer cells. EMFs, even when non-ionizing (lower radiation), cause oxidative stress, inducing a cell danger response, and disrupting biological processes that naturally occur leading to a plethora of serious illnesses including cancer, Alzheimer’s, and endocrine system damage. Oxidative stress has also been linked to cancer because of thermal damage to cells.
“Government standards on phones already ensure that we’re fully protected.”
In a previous blog, we spoke about EMF regulations around the world, and how they differ in seriousness and effectiveness. For example, countries like France, Israel, and Russia have implemented strict policies to protect their citizens from EMFs as much as possible including cell phone tower regulations and phone usage restrictions in schools.
However, in the USA and some other countries where EMFs still have not fully been recognized as a legitimate issue, effective policies haven’t been put into place or implemented. Furthermore, the USA relies on SAR as a measure for most phone standards, but this measure hasn’t been updated since 1996, and the testing for this level was not standardized, focusing only on the impact on the head. Many of these standards are out of date, not generally standardizable, and don’t look at the bigger picture. In the last year, the FCC was found guilty by a federal court for ignoring evidence that updated regulations were needed.
“Cell phones and other devices emit very low-level radiation so I don’t need to worry.”
While yes, cell phones and other devices don’t emit extremely high levels of radiation, what matters is a) how long you use it, b) how many devices you are exposed to, and c) what distance you’re at from your devices. When you think about it, with people now using their phones for around 45 hours a week (more than a full-time job!), and being constantly surrounded by other devices (routers, laptops, monitors, TVs), the effect can add up. If you only used your device for less than an hour a day, and didn’t use or weren’t surrounded by other devices for the rest of your day, then yes the low level of radiation would be minuscule in effect. But in reality, we’re unconsciously exposed to so many devices at once, and the radiation accrues, so we must take preemptive actions today.
“Bluetooth earphones are very low radiation so they can’t affect us.”
Bluetooth earphones were shown to be more harmful because they at such proximity to our brain where the barrier is thinnest. The key here is how long you use these and whether you take breaks. Using only one piece can also be harmful because of disproportionate radiation distribution. Yes, they’re a tad safer than being stuck to your cell phone by the ear, but using these devices for more than 1-2 hour intervals can be extremely harmful. If you’re looking to use these for 2-4 hours, maybe consider using wired earphones which can emit less radiation.
“Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS) doesn’t exist.”
There’s a plethora of data depicting otherwise – a few hundred people per 1 million experienced this so although it’s rare, it still exists. EHS is a condition where individuals experience non-organ-specific effects in response to technology exposure. Some effects included dizziness, fatigue, tiredness, and skin rashes. A recent report by the EU recommended a reduction of exposure to EMFs to protect those who suffer from this condition – many countries have officially recognized its existence as a disease, and it’s expected that more people may become sensitive to technology in the coming years as our exposure to devices increases by the day.
“EMF protection technology is not effective.”
There are different approaches that varied EMF protection technology adopt.
One approach to EMF protection is “blocking” or “shielding” products, which primarily rely on the use of conductive or magnetic materials such as metals. They lower the exposure to EMF by absorbing the waves or acting as a barrier between you and the source. Some consumer products that utilize blocking technology may use metals that divert the radiation, without absorbing it like other conductive materials, to form a barrier that blocks the waves moving towards the body.
Aires Tech products modulate rather than block EMR/EMFs. Our patented nanotechnology transforms EMR waves not only from our individual devices, but also from the surrounding sources of radiation. A major problem with the waves from technogenic sources is that they are non-coherent, meaning they are inconsistent and incompatible with our own biological EMR. Modulation technology allows for protection from EMFs by converting the waves into a coherent form, harmonizing them with our own and optimizing our environments. Check out our blog on how it works to learn about in depth version about the science behind it.
“TVs and radio signals have been around for a while – but no one’s ever been affected so radiation is not important.”
There are 4 different types of TVs nowadays: CRT TVs (from 1960-2000), LCD TVs, Smart TVs (Plasma, LED), and computer monitors used as TVs. The oldest TVs emit low levels of X-ray radiation – which is even more dangerous than other types of TV, and although people were still affected by these – there were not even studies by scientists to prove it. However, today scientists say that the dust off these TVs is still slightly radioactive! But since most people have moved on to the new TVs nowadays, let’s focus on LED TVs – these use less power than the old plasma TVs so there’s less EMF radiation. With smart TVs, these can be extra harmful because there are the extra elements of using the wifi router and Bluetooth, adding to the already high level of radiation. With any TV you use, make sure you’re at a distance and make sure you turn it off when it’s not in use. However, in short, TVs emit high levels of radiation and it was the lack of studies that contributed to the misconception that “no one was affected”.
“EMF from 5G is safer than 4G.”
5G networks have been the new and hot topic – by 2025 there’s expected to be global and widespread coverage. 5G aims to allow for larger bandwidth and faster rates. Now because it’s such a new and upcoming product, there’s not a lot of research – we might be a case study in the future as scientists begin to gather data now. But from what we know about the way it operates and how it requires more power, it might have more negative effects than 4G. It also requires more towers as it can’t handle large proximities like 4G, and it will work alongside 4G, meaning that you’re exposed to double the level of frequencies – potentially being even more harmful. So, unfortunately, the signs right now don’t demonstrate 5G being any safer than 4G.
Conclusion: Busting EMF Myths with a Dash of Common Sense
In concluding our discussion on myths about EMFs, it’s important to reaffirm our stance: EMFs, as emitted by our everyday technology, pose negative risks to our health. Therefore, it’s imperative to take proactive steps in mitigating EMF exposure. This can include using EMF-modulating technology, limiting time spent on devices, and maintaining a safe distance from high-emission sources. As we embrace the conveniences of technology, it’s equally important to stay informed and take necessary precautions to protect our health from the potential hazards of EMFs.