What is that “Smartphone” Really Costing You and Your Family?

Technology is distracting us from the people and relationships that mean the most in our lives. If you are addicted to your phone- there is help.

Meters aren’t the only “smart” things to be introduced in the last several years that are harming the health of our communities.  Addiction to ‘smart’ phones is a growing problem- not only because of cancer risk and overall health problems related to microwave radiation, but also from the subtle yet pervasive alienation that results from mass ‘smart’ phone use in public spaces- a subject that- as this recent excellent article on Alternet points out- is rarely discussed.

Following is a compilation by safe technology advocate Amy O’Hair (author of the Primer on FCC Guidelines) of what ‘smart’ phone addiction really costs us- both individually and as communities.   A thriving street space- where kids can play safely, and social exchange can happen- is crucial to healthy communities.  We’ve seen how the automobile can obliterate the numbers of local friends people have.  Now the smartphone risks damaging what remains of the social fabric.

What is that “Smartphone” Really Costing You and Your Family?

By Amy O’Hair

☠ It’s costing you irreplaceable, meaningful time with your kids—or your date—or your lover—or even with yourself. http://www.latimes.com/business/technology/la-fi-tn-smartphone-nearby-1-in-10-use-during-sex-20130711,0,6002103.story

☠ It’s costing you relaxation and rest: now your boss expects more from you, 24/7. http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-10-31/were-all-addicted

☠ It’s costing you the real pleasures of travel and adventure. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/14/iphone-ad_n_4096997.html

☠ It’s costing your health in the long term. You wouldn’t volunteer to suck on a tailpipe or lick lead paint or drink pesticide, but those are all in the same cancer-making category as the RF radiation from your phone. http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/5-ways-your-cell-phone-is-harming-you

☠ It’s costing your brain: 4G cellphone radiation alters your brain activity in clearly measurable ways. There was never any long-term testing on the safety of your phone or the cell network. http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/30-minutes-exposure-4g-cell-phone-radiation-affects-brain-activity-new-study

☠ It’s costing your health in so many ways: you’re at risk for future cognitive impairment, immune disorders, neurological damage, stress response, disrupted sleep, fertility and reproductive problems, DNA damage, and finally tumors and cancers. http://www.opencenter.org/heads-up-cell-phones-and-wifi-do-we-need-to-be-concerned/

☠ It’s costing you high-quality, health-giving sleep—even hours after you get away from the screen.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/05/tablet-light-sleep-melatonin-e-reader-_n_1847889.html And http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/23/sleep-habits_n_4145681.html

☠ It’s costing your child’s normal mental development. http://communities.washingtontimes.com/neighborhood/between-rock-and-hard-place/2013/nov/3/parents-be-smart-do-not-give-your-kid-smart-phone/

☠ It’s costing your child his health, now and into the future: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/17/teens-on-screens_n_4101758.html And http://www.saferemr.com/2013/09/american-academy-of-pediatrics-demands.html

☠ It’s costing your teen her well-being. http://www.ehjournal.net/content/12/1/90/abstract

☠ It’s costing your baby a normal neurological development during pregnancy. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/02/23/should-pregnant-women-avoid-using-cell-phones.aspx And http://electromagnetichealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Children%E2%80%99s-Health-Panel-Summary-10-31-13.pdf

☠ It’s costing your fertility—or that of your child, in the future. There are many studies showing how RF radiation damages sperm and testicles, and fetuses during pregnancy. Here’s just one. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22465825

☠ It’s costing you and your child a sense of empathy and connection. http://vimeo.com/71749330 And http://billmoyers.com/segment/sherry-turkle-on-being-alone-together/

☠ It’s costing you your common sense: Are you one of the many who “couldn’t live without their phone”? Do you like that? http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-10-31/were-all-addicted

☠ It’s costing all of us the environment: that vaunted “cloud” is a greenhouse-gaseous energy-sucking behemoth. http://www.electronicsnews.com.au/features/sorry-the-wireless-cloud-isn-t-green-it-s-an-energ

☠ It’s costing all of us basic public safety and awareness: a whole train full of device-entranced people don’t even notice a man waving a gun—till he shoots someone. http://www.sfgate.com/crime/article/Absorbed-device-users-oblivious-to-danger-4876709.php

☠ It can cost you the phone itself. Half of all robberies include a smartphone … thieves take phones like taking candy from a stupefied baby. A candidate, returning from meeting about community crime, distracted by a call, is robbed of his phone at gunpoint, in front of his own home. http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/whats-driving-oaklands-robbery-epidemic/Content?oid=3750763

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WHAT CAN YOU DO?
How you can make your phone less costly to your health and to your life:

–Use it less. Turn it off. Can’t get simpler than that.

–Need more? The essential 5 tips: http://www.ewg.org/cellphoneradiation/5-Safety-Tips : Speakerphone or earpiece. Text, text, text. Hold it away from body during use. Only when signal is strong. NOT in your pocket, not under your pillow, ever.

–Yet more? Here’s a list of 10 tips: http://centerforsaferwireless.org/10-Tips-for-Safer-Cell-Phone-Use.php

–Are you addicted? Some excellent tips for getting a handle on your smartphone addiction and taking back your life: http://dotcomplicated.co/content/2013/07/addicted-smartphone/

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2 Responses to What is that “Smartphone” Really Costing You and Your Family?

  1. "smart phones" addictions are no longer cool - they're embarassing says:

    this is a phenomenal approach – thank you for bring this angle up.
    “smart phone” addicts appear to have a lower iq and lower intelligence.
    observe.

    start calling out on the addictions.
    we also need someone or some coalition needs to file a lawsuit against apple.

  2. sj says:

    Excellent piece, Amy.
    I would only add it is costing every person in range of your phone and the cell tower the same health risks and impacts. If people still care about others in some way, this point could be added.
    Robert C. Kane’s intelligent essay about Second hand RF from other people’s usage:
    http://www.goaegis.com/articles/robert_c_kane_071202_p4v7n6j8q0n.html
    Thanks!

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