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6 Modern Gadgets That Affect Your Health
Friday, October 22, 2010 8:06 AM
By Sylvia Booth Hubbard
You may not be able to live without your cell phone or laptop, but evidence is mounting that the fun, useful gadgets of modern life, such as cell phones and computers, may be affecting your health — raising the risk of headache, infertility, and even brain cancer.
Holding your laptop too close to the skin for long periods of time can result in “toasted skin syndrome,” a permanent, mottled-look that is caused by long-term heat exposure. In rare cases, the laptops can lead to the type of damage that causes skin cancers, according to Swiss researchers. Be safe, they suggest, by placing the computer in a carrying case or using a heat shield if you hold it in your lap.
Another report found elevated scrotum temperatures in men who rested laptops on their laps. Prolonged heat can lead to reduced sperm production and affect fertility.
2. iPods and headphones
A new study found that nearly 1 in 5 American teens have hearing loss, and the problem is increasing. Experts blame using earbud headphones on personal music players, such as iPods and MP3 players.
Hearing loss can occur in as short as an hour and 15 minutes. A study conducted at Northwestern University found hearing loss in young people who used headphones that was similar to that found in the aging adults. Experts advise using larger headphones that cover the ear opening instead of going inside it.
3. Cell phones
Can cell phones cause cancer? The jury is still out, but researchers at the University of Washington discovered that two hours of exposure to the levels of radiation emitted by cell phones splintered the DNA of brain cells in rats, making them similar to cells found in cancerous tumors.
A Russian study found that children who used cell phones had poorer memories than those children who didn’t.
The effect of cell phone radiation on male fertility is especially troubling. Research in seven countries found that young men who are heavy users of cell phones drastically lower their sperm count.
“All the research shows the same thing,” award-winning scientist Devra Davis told the Daily Mail.
“If you take young men who are trying to become fathers, those who use mobile phones at least four hours a day have about half the sperm count of others. Sperm exposed to mobile phone radiation in the lab is sicker, thinner, and less capable of swimming.” Experts advise limiting cell phone use.
4. Video sports games
They may make you get up off the couch and move, but sports games like the Nintendo Wii may put you at risk for shoulder and elbow injuries.
“You are playing an activity that you normally would not do in real life,” Dr. Mark Klion who is associated with the Mount Sinai School of Medicine told blisstree.com. It’s a repetitive activity that really has zero limitations to it.
“When you play the tennis game, you can hit just so many tennis balls,” he said. “But when you were playing outside, half the time you’d be chasing balls. You’re able to do a lot more in a shorter limited period of time. That adds up to an overuse type of injury. And we’ve seen a bunch of injuries from the Wii. Most of them are related to the upper extremities — to the shoulder, elbow, and wrist.” Klion recommends that new Wii users start slow, and limit their playing to 30 minutes. And like in every sport, everyone should do warm-up exercises.
5. Computer screens
Even though staring at a computer screen for hours won’t cause permanent damage, it can strain eyes or make existing eye problems worse. And sitting at a computer can be a major cause of headaches. Britain’s College of Optometrists found that two of every five office workers complained of headaches. A quarter admitted they had difficulty focusing and half said their eyes were tired. Take frequent breaks from the computer and rest your eyes by looking at distant objects.
Slumping in a chair or on a couch to watch television can lead to numerous problems with your back and neck. “I’m seeing an increase in children with back problems relating to them being more sedentary and the perils are the same for adults,” British chiropractor Carl Irwin told the Daily Mail. “Over time the joints in the spine stiffen, which can cause early onset degeneration, straining, and weakening of the abdominal and core muscles.”
And, of course, sitting in front of the television for hours can also add to the risk of obesity, a contributing factor in cardiovascular disease.
© 2010 Newsmax. All rights reserved
Note: All these products are producing EMFs - electromagnetic radiation. We would go further in adding additional risk factors to most of these gadgets. Read more about electromagnetic sensitivity and the risk of electromagnetic pollution.
Most family rooms are hotbeds of electromagnetic radiation, TV, wi-fi, video games, computers, cell phones. Protect your entire family by hanging a BioElectric room Shield in this popular, but risk filled, gathering place.
Read more about the dangers of cell phones, in Devra Davis' new book "Disconnect"
The first is an EMf Protection Blanket that was originally designed to protect pregnant women and their babies. But it's also excellent for anyone who uses a laptop on their lap. (Men you have reason to be concerned as well)