Salisbury Press

Monday, September 16, 2019
PRESS PHOTOs COURTESY OF DAVID SHAHAR AND MARK G. L. SAYERS, AND NATURE.COM.These images show horn-like bone spurs growing at the base of the skulls of some young adults. To view a copy of the Creative Commons license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. PRESS PHOTOs COURTESY OF DAVID SHAHAR AND MARK G. L. SAYERS, AND NATURE.COM.These images show horn-like bone spurs growing at the base of the skulls of some young adults. To view a copy of the Creative Commons license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

Another View

Thursday, June 27, 2019 by The Press in Opinion

Are cellphones safe for our health?

Everywhere one goes, young children to adults can be seen using cellphones.

After seeing a WFMZ 69 News report about researchers in Queensland, Australia, finding evidence of horn-like bone spurs growing at the base of the skulls of some young adults, I searched the Internet to learn more.

I found a June 20 Fortune article titled “Cell Phones Might Be Causing Horns to Grow on Young People’s Skulls: Study” by Chris Morris.

According to the article, “Researchers [David Shahar and Mark G. L. Sayers] at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia, have found evidence frequent use of mobile devices could be fundamentally altering our physiology.

“Specifically, they’re seeing horn-like bone spurs appear on younger adults (the most frequent users of those devices),” Morris said.

Morris further states in the article: “Our findings raise a concern about the future musculoskeletal health of the young adult population and reinforce the need for prevention intervention through posture improvement education,” the scientists noted in the report, which was originally published a year ago, but has come to more prominent attention recently.

Exactly how accurate is the study and just how safe are cellphones, especially in light of the following statement made by the Food and Drug Administration?

“According to current data [as of May 2], the FDA believes that the weight of scientific evidence does not show an association between exposure to radio frequency from cellphones and adverse health outcomes.”

The FDA website further states, “Still, there is consensus that additional research is warranted to address gaps in knowledge, such as the effects of cellphone use over long-term and pediatric populations.”

There may be no way at this time to tell what the long-term consequences of using a cellphone will be on a person’s health.

There are, however, several things we can do to reduce the risk until a definite verdict on the safety of cellphones is reached:

·Limit the amount of time using a cellphone to one’s ear.

·Use the speaker on the cellphone when appropriate.

·Text whenever possible.

·Place the cellphone on a table a couple of feet away from you when it is on or you are sleeping.

·Turn off the cellphone totally for awhile and reconnect with your kids, loved ones and friends.

Some studies are showing there is no harm. Others are showing there may be harm to a person’s health and the FDA advocates more research needs to be done on the use of cellphones to determine how safe or unsafe they are; it may be better to err on the side of caution and find a safer way to use your cellphone rather than bringing it close to your face and ear.

Susan Bryant

editorial assistant

Parkland Press

Northwestern Press