“Children are our greatest treasure. They are our future.” - Nelson Mandela
The children of today’s generation are more digitally savvy than any generation that came before them. Ask any 11 or 12 year old, and chances are that they will be much more clued into the latest viral internet trends than you are.
While this sense of comfort with technology has thrown open several new creative and educational opportunities to younger children, it also means that they are constantly in contact with wireless devices throughout much of their lives.
This beg the question - does this constant exposure to wireless radiation affect the well-being of children? Let’s explore this question in detail today.
EMF & The Human Body
Several scientific studies over the years have evaluated the effects of EMF radiation on human beings.
It is a fact that our body’s nervous system relies on electrical signals to send and receive messages on almost every biological activity - and these cells can get excited and impacted by exposure to EMF radiation.
Our research at Omnia demonstrates how each atom in the human body resonates at a balanced vibrational frequency. However, exposure to ambient radiation with a different frequency than our own (which is the case with EMF radiation) can throw our bodies into a state of dissonance or imbalance.
Why Does EMF Radiation Affect Children More?
A report published in 2000, commonly called the ‘Stewart Report’ by the UK Independent Expert Group on Mobile Phones, stated that children may be more vulnerable to the effects of EMF radiation compared to any other age group.
While we are aware of the effects of EMF radiation on adults, why is it that young children are perceived to be more sensitive to wireless radiation? The answer lies in their rapidly evolving physical and mental capabilities.
Since young children’s brains and bodies are still in a developing stage and are not fully formed, they appear to be more susceptible to the effects of wireless radiation. Here are three crucial reasons why children are more sensitive to EMF than adults.
1 - Higher Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) In Children
While the skull thickness of adults is around 2mm, it is only 0.5mm for 5-year-olds and 1mm for 10-year-olds. Additionally, the ionic content and moisture content is higher in children versus adults.
This difference in the skull thickness, smaller head diameter, and high moisture and ionic content increases the specific absorption rate, or SAR, of children in comparison to adults.
SAR refers to the rate at which energy is absorbed per unit mass by the human body when it is exposed to radiofrequency. This is the predominant way that our phones are tested for safety, which we talk about in this article.
An article published by Gandhi et al. in 2012 revealed that the SAR for a 10-year-old child is up to a whopping 153% more than the SAR usually used to evaluate the cellphone safety certification process.
The study also noted that if electrical properties are considered, a child’s head absorption rate could be up to two times that of adults, and the absorption of their skull’s bone marrow could be up to 10 times that of adults. This higher rate of absorption of wireless radiation in children makes them more vulnerable to EMF exposure than adults.
Cellphones that are currently approved as "safe for use" by the public are designed for the SAR tolerance limits for adults, not children.
2 - Higher Sensitivity Of The Nervous System In Children
An article published by Dr. Jin-Hwa Moon states that the developing nervous system found in children are more conductive in nature.
This means that their nervous system ends up absorbing more electromagnetic energy than adults do, even when exposed to the same level of EMF radiation.
3 - A Lifetime Of Exposure
While the baby boomer and Gen X generation may still remember a time where there were no cell phones in use, and millenials entered the smart phone generation in their teens, Gen Z has had untethered access to wireless devices since their infancy.
This means that kids today have experienced constant exposure to wireless radiation by cell phones, TVs, laptops and other wireless devices since they were in utero.
As a result, the children of today will be exposed to EMF radiation for a longer duration than today’s adults. The impact of EMF on their physical and mental well-being should be given serious consideration.
Is This Cause For Concern?
Here's Devra Davis, a Professor of Medicine, President and Founder of the Environmental Health Trust talking about the potential effects of microwave radiation.
As you can see from the reasons stated above, if an adult human body is like antennae that absorbs and responds to wireless radiation, a child’s antennae is much stronger!
Keeping this in mind, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a new set of recommendations in December 2017 that were aimed at limiting the exposure of EMF radiation in children.
While this isn't a cause for panic, it does mean that children are more sensitive to the effects of EMF than adults, and their exposure to the use of wireless devices should be regulated accordingly.
5 Tips To Limit EMF Exposure In Your Children
It is unrealistic to expect zero EMF exposure in today’s society. However, there are easy ways by which you can significantly reduce the EMF levels that your children are exposed to in their daily lives:
1 - Restrict Their Screen Time
Earmark a limited duration of screen time for your children. This applies not just to cell phones but also to tablets, laptops, and TV. This will not only reduce their exposure to EMF radiation but also encourage them to seek out other creative hobbies, physical exercise and offline social interaction that is crucial for their overall self-development.
2 - Keep Wireless Devices Away From Their Rooms
Make a conscious decision to store all wireless devices away from the bedrooms or playrooms where your children spend most of their time.
This also means that your Wi-Fi router should be installed in a spot that is the furthest away from these rooms.
3 - No Wireless Gadgets At Night
Make it a habit to turn off all the wireless devices in your home before you go to sleep. You don't need to be connected while you're dreaming!
This will drastically cut the EMF exposure in your children and you as well.
4 - Don’t Store Cell Phone In Baby Carriers
In case you are taking your toddler or newborn out for a walk, it’s a good idea to not keep your cellphone in the storage area of your carrier.
5 - Use Protection Devices For Your Gadgets
Radiofrequency shields or products that create resonance between your body and your devices can be one way to reduce the EMF impact on your kiddos. When you're choosing a product, just make sure that you're muscle testing and tuning in to your body to ensure that the products you choose is the right one for you and your family.
EMF and Children Final Thoughts
The progress and fate of humankind lie in the hands of our children. That’s why it should be our priority to ensure the safest and most conducive environment for them to thrive in during their formative years.
By being aware of the higher sensitivity of children toward EMF, we can be in a better position to find potential ways to limit their use of wireless devices and their exposure to wireless radiation.
References & Interesting ReadsEMF-limiting recommendations by the American Academy of Pediatrics
Article: Health effects of electromagnetic fields on children
Article: The underestimation of absorbed cell phone radiation, especially in children
Article: Sensitivity of children to electromagnetic fields
The Stewart Report: Independent expert group on mobile phones
Study: The effect of chronic exposure to EMF on sleep quality, stress, depression and anxiety
Study: Occupational electromagnetic field exposures associated with sleep quality