Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Wireless Phones Can Affect The Brain, Swedish Study Suggests

Date:
November 11, 2009
Source:
The Swedish Research Council
Summary:
Mobile phones and other cordless telephones have a biological effect on the brain, according to new research from Sweden. It is still too early to say if any health risks are involved, but medical researchers recommend caution in the use of these phones, above all among children and adolescents. Few children who regularly use mobile phones use a headset regularly.

Mobile phones and other cordless telephones have a biological effect on the brain, according to new research. It is still too early to say if any health risks are involved, but medical researchers recommend caution in the use of these phones, above all among children and adolescents.
Credit: iStockphoto/Edward Bock

A study at Örebro University in Sweden indicates that mobile phones and other cordless telephones have a biological effect on the brain. It is still too early to say if any health risks are involved, but medical researcher Fredrik Söderqvist recommends caution in the use of these phones, above all among children and adolescents. Few children who regularly use mobile phones use a headset often or always, even though the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority recommends this.

"Children may be more sensitive than adults to radiation from wireless phones," says Fredrik Söderqvist, who is presenting his research findings in a new doctoral thesis at Örebro University.

On the one hand, he examined the use of wireless telephones among children and adolescents, on the other hand, whether adolescents themselves perceive any health problems that might be related to this use.

He then went on to study blood samples from adults, looking at two so-called biomarkers to see whether wireless phone use has a biological effect on the brain. One of these studies focused on a protein that exists in the so-called blood-cerebrospinal-fluid barrier, which is part of the brain's protection against outside influences. The study revealed an association between use of wireless telephony and increased content of the protein transthyretin in the blood.

Fredrik Söderqvist stresses that the increase as such does not have to be a cause of concern, but since it indicates that the brain is in fact affected by microwaves from wireless telephones, there may be other -- as yet unknown -- effects that may impact our health.

"We should all follow the recommendations of the Radiation Safety Authority when it comes to using headsets and avoiding mobile phone use when the coverage is poor."

Self-perceived health problems

The study also shows that users themselves experience health problems that may be caused by wireless telephones. Children and adolescents who regularly use wireless telephones more often reported various health symptoms and graded their well-being lower than those who do not use them regularly. According to Fredrik Söderqvist, it is not possible to draw any conclusions about what is cause and effect on the basis of this study, but he feels that it is urgent to examine this association more closely.

"The connection was strongest regarding headaches, asthmatic complaints, and impaired concentration. But more research is needed to exclude the effects of other factors and sources of error, even though it is difficult to see how this connection could be fully explained by such factors."

Impact may be felt in the future

Today nearly all children from the age of 7 have access to a wireless telephone, but usage takes off only around the age of 12, and more than 80 percent of all 19-year-olds use mobile phones regularly. At the same time, the study shows that fewer than two percent of the children and adolescents use a headset often or always.

"This is worrisome, since the possible health effects from long-term exposure to microwaves have not been clarified, especially among children and adolescents. The threshold values in place today protect us from warming, a so-called thermal effect. But if there are mechanisms that are independent of warming, it is not certain that today's thresholds provide protection. And it may be that these are effects that will not be perceived until later on in the future," says Fredrik Söerqvist.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Swedish Research Council. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Swedish Research Council. "Wireless Phones Can Affect The Brain, Swedish Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 November 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091111121251.htm>.
The Swedish Research Council. (2009, November 11). Wireless Phones Can Affect The Brain, Swedish Study Suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091111121251.htm
The Swedish Research Council. "Wireless Phones Can Affect The Brain, Swedish Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091111121251.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) — The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) — Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

AFP (July 24, 2014) — America's death penalty debate raged Thursday after it took nearly two hours for Arizona to execute a prisoner who lost a Supreme Court battle challenging the experimental lethal drug cocktail. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) — A study by German researchers claims watching TV while you're stressed out can make you feel guilty and like a failure. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:  

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile iPhone Android Web
          Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins